Walk the Croaghan Way for National Trails Day

To recognise National Trails Day on Sunday 2 October 2011, Ballymoney Borough Council has organised a walk along the Croaghan Way accreditated way marked way.

This circular 3 mile route starts and finishes at Altarichard Car Park, Altarichard Road, located on the Orra Scenic Route and commences at 2pm. Previously known as the Milibern Walk, the route includes a walk to Croaghan summit from which there are spectacular views of Rathlin Island and beyond to the Scottish coastline.

The route is also situated within the Antrim Coast & Glens Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and forms part of the Antrim Hills SPA (Special Protection Area) and the Croaghan & Slieveanorra Area of Special Scientific Interest (ASSI).

The walk will be guided by Rachel Bain, Biodiversity Officer and Sonya Crawford, Countryside Access Officer and participants will have the opportunity to find out more about the importance of this special area for flora and fauna. It is an area where Merlin and Hen Harrier nest and feed and buzzards are a common site overhead. Red grouse too can be found nestling among the many heathers and moorland /heathland plants which dominate the landscape. Walkers must bring warm, waterproof clothing and a moderate to good level of fitness is required for this walk as there is a steep ascent and stiles to climb.

The open heath/moorland terrain is likely to be marshy underfoot and sturdy waterproof walking boots are essential. The event is free of charge, all you have to do is pre-register your interest by telephoning the Countryside Access Officer on 028 276 60227.Further information is available by visiting www.ballymoney.gov.uk or www.nationaltrailsday.co.uk