Rossbrin Loop Walk
|Type of Route
|2 -3 hours
Rossbrin Loop Walk is a scenic coastal walk of about 11.5 km on tarred surfaces.
Follow the purple arrows and the Fastnet Lighthouse soon becomes visible from the high point of the walk. A climb on the far side leads to a steep decent to Rossbrin Cove. As the walker passes from old Ballycummisk Copper Mine on the right there are spectacular views south over Rossbrin Castle. Continue on by the pier, and after two steep sections the walker rises to the site of the old Cappaghlass Copper Mine, before crossing an area of moorland with 360º views. A steep drop affords a birds-eye view of Jeremy Irons’ Castle. Return via Greenmount to Ballydehob.
The Rossbrin Walk route is marked with purple arrows which you need to look out for.
Starting at the Trailhead (1) you walk south alongside the water and under the 12 arch bridge soon veering right and up a gentle hill. Pass under the single arch railway bridge and you’ll see the school to your right as you reach a cross-roads (2).
Turn LEFT here and walk along a winding country lane (Greenmount road) for about 1.5km when you will see a road branching off left into some woodland opposite an old shed (3). You’ll be returning up that side road but just for now continue STRAIGHT ON for about 1.5km more along a quite good road which can be quite busy. You now approach a cross-roads (4) and you need to turn sharp RIGHT uphill almost doubling back on yourself.
You’ll be climbing steadily now for about 0.8km and after the road levels off you’ll see Stouke Burial Ground on your right. A good place to take a rest and explore for a few minutes.
Continuing north for about 0.5km you come to a junction (5) and need to turn LEFT walking gently uphill for about 0.5km and past an old farm on a bend in the road. 50m after the farm buildings is a public road to the LEFT (6) which you must take.
The road continues to climb but soon levels out. As you begin your descent from the top of Ballycumisk towards Rossbrin, look out for the brilliant view to the south. You can see Castle Island off to your right and Rossbrin Castle below you (O’Mahony Castles). Look out for signs of an old copper mine which was worked here in the late 1800s. After about 0.7km you reach a cross roads (7) and you have to cross STRAIGHT ON and continue.
The road winds downhill now and there are many bends as you descend past some old copper mine workings.
Look for signs of this archaeology in the fields and an explanation sign on a gate. After about 1km you are nearing sea level and there is a road branching off to the right (8). Ignore this and continue STRAIGHT ON veering left onto the road alongside the harbour. You may be able to see the boatyard across the bay to your right and the slip where boats are launched. Walk east now, keeping the water on your right and you’ll pass a small pier and a few houses.
Eventually you leave the water behind and start the slog up a short steep hill passing a side road and then descending to a farm ahead of you (9). Ignore turnings to the right and left and continue past the farmyard up the hill beyond. It’s a bit of a slog but soon levels off and you’ll see some derelict miners’ cottages ahead and an information board. To your left is an old mineshaft safely fenced off and away to your right the remnants of a tall chimney recently destroyed by lightning. Soon after the mine you reach a junction (10) and you need to turn RIGHT.
There follows a pleasant stroll across open moorland with splendid views of Kilcoe Castle as you crest the hill and descend a short steep hill to Foilnamuck (11) where you need to keep LEFT.
The next 1.5km is a gentle stroll through pleasant countryside, passing a few farms and then descending to a sharp left bend to follow the gurgling river upstream to the old bridge which brings you back out to Greenmount Road (3) where you passed by earlier on the walk.
Turn RIGHT and follow Greenmount Road just over 1km till you reach the cross roads where the school is located. Here can turn RIGHT to bring you back to the trailhead or continue straight on to reach the village where refreshments no doubt are awaiting you in one of the many fine cafés and pubs.