Shannon and the erne

TRACKS AND TRAILS  Episode 2

Enniskillen

Presenter/Walker; Colin Murphy

Guides; A selection of guides including Fermanagh native and presenter Graham Little

Location;  Cavan, Fermanagh, Upper Lough Erne

Summary

Setting out in Belturbet Co. Cavan comedian Colin Murphy  cycles to the border to meet Fermanagh native Graham Little, and together they cycle to Upper Lough Erne. This is not so much a lake as a watery maze of islands, inlets and meandering waters. The two lads cycle along the  Kingfisher cycle  which goes all around Upper Lough Erne.

Graham parts with Colin as he reaches the National Trust estate of Crom, containing over 2,000 acres of natural landscapes and woodland. Colin pays a visit to Crom Castle where Viscount Crichton suggests  Colin visit one of the oldest Yew Trees in Europe, which has been witness to many events in Irish History for nearly four hundred years!

Colin having realized long ago that the best way to see Fermanagh is by water, is met by Share Adventure Centre manager Robert Livingston who sets him up with an Indian type canoe to discover the  Canoe Trail on the Upper Lough stopping off at inlets and islands on the way. The lake truly was a motorway for the Maguires who ruled Fermanagh from their Castle at Enniskillen.

In recent years the Lakelands of Fermanagh and the border counties have been opened up to both walkers and water enthusiasts by the creation of the Shannon Erne Canal which links the Shannon with the River Erne. It means you can now travel like the former inhabitants of these lakes did in ancient history from Limerick to Ballyshannon along the Shannon-Erne waterway.

Colin’s final destination before cycling off to Enniskillen is Aghakillymaude Mummers Centre  at Knockninny. Jim Ledwith fills him in on the Mummers tradition in the weeks before Christmas, when men make hats and dresses from Straw and go to visit houses and perform drama and songs and get food and drink in return.

Back on the road Colin arrives at his final destination, Enniskillen Castle. Colin was delighted with the chance to spend time getting to know Fermanagh as he usually just passes through it in his car.

Use the following links to find further information on this adventure

http://www.cycleni.com/101/kingfisher-trail/

http://www.canoeni.com/canoe-trails/lough-erne/