A-B. Starting from the mapboard at the car park, exit through the ‘door-in-the-wall’ and turn left on to the woodland path following the green arrow (and the purple arrow which is for the longer loop called the Jenkinstown Wood Loop). Follow this path for 150m to reach a T-junction with a sandy roadway where you turn left.
B-C. Now the loop begins to ascend gently and passes a track (on your right) to St Colman’s Well. Approximately 300m later you reach a 3-way junction where the purple loop veers right. You turn left here.
C-A. Continue to follow the green arrows along the sandy roadway for almost 1km to reach another ‘door-in-the-wall - this marks your re-entry to the trailhead area!
Just a 10min drive from Kilkenny City in the South East of Ireland, Jenkinstown Park was once part of a large estate. Today, the old house is long gone but remnants of 1870s parkland have survived, including rare Chinese Necklace Poplars. The facilities also include a picnic site, forest walks, deer park and a craft centre. A small garden to commemorate the Irish poet Thomas Moore – a friend of Byron and Shelley. Moore wrote the Last Rose of Summer while staying at Jenkinstown House - Sir John Stevenson set the poem to its widely-known melody, and it was published in a collection of Moore’s work called Irish Melodies (1807-34). The actual rose that inspired him lives on – a cutting taken from it flourishes in the National Botanic Gardens at Glasnevin, Dublin. The main tree species in the park are beech, ash, oak and Norway spruce - other flora include bluebells which form a purple carpet among a wood of beech during mid to late April. Fox, badger, stoat, red and grey squirrel and deer are in an enclosure. Many species of birds inhabit this wood including the pheasant, raven and long-eared owl - and there are bats in the old church!
This loop is one of a network of trails being developed by Coillte (the Forestry Board) as part of the Coillte Outdoors Programme. check the Irish Trails website for more details