An easy loop from the Fastnet Trails Ballydehob trailhead around small, quiet lanes with very varied views and a few climbs going from farmland to coast to moorland and back.
We celebrated the last day of 2019 by heading to Ballydehob to walk the Rossbrin Loop. The sky was overcast with some dramatic clouds but the forecast was good and proved to be correct with pleasantly mild temperatures and no wind. The trail begins along a relatively busy road for these parts so some care was needed but subsequently we saw very little traffic.
At the top of the first hill, Stouke burial ground has some interesting tombs and a bullaun stone that is a holy well which Herself has described.
The route rises and descends past farmland before reaching the coast at Rossbrin. The gaunt stack of Rossbrin Castle was outlined against a darkening sky by the time we reached the bay where wading birds were dotted across the mud-flats at low tide. There is another holy well here, hidden on the shore.
Climbing up from the coast, the route passes old mine workings at Cappaghglass, a reminder of how busy this area must once have been, before crossing high moorland with views across the estuary to Kilcoe Castle. A long descent reaches the Greenmount Road again for the last leg back to the trailhead.