The Irish language translation of Bailieborough is Coill an Chollaigh, meaning forest of the boar. Today, you are not going to encounter any boars in this small County Cavan town, well known for its proximity to lakes and forests.
Nor indeed, will you meet any in Castle Lake forestry, where this loop has been developed. The loop begins and ends at the car park on the lakeshore and takes you around Castle Lake, with some fine views and interesting sites along the way, including a memorial to those who died at Rebel Hill in 1798. The longer loop (add 3 kilometres) takes you by the graves of the Marist brothers who occupied Bailieborough Castle. The castle (the remains of which are also to be seen in the forest) was built by William Bailie, a Scottish undertaker or planter, who was granted the lands of Tandragee in east Breffni by King James I. He built the castle and enclosed the demesne by 1629.
A-B. Start from the car park at Castle Lake. Facing the lake, start through the barrier on your right. Follow the blue arrows along a forestry road on the southern end of the lake. After 1 kilometre veer left at a Y-junction and continue for another 1 kilometre to reach a crossroads. Turn left here.
B-A. After 100 metres turn sharp left at another crossroads. Climbing gently now, the loop soon affords you spectacular views over Castle Lake and the surrounding countryside. Descending again you reach a wooden footbridge which takes you across a river.
C-A. Shortly after crossing the footbridge the loop rejoins the lakeshore, the trailhead is only 600 metres away.