Barrow Way Near Leighlinbridge

Weir on the River Barrow Near Leighlinbridge

Having lived beside the River Barrow for five years now, I have learned to love my little stretch of the river.  I’ve strolled along its banks throughout the year and watched the changes in the hedgerows as the seasons change but I’m still only beginning to get to know this beautiful river

The River Barrow for Kids

My son has lived all his life besde the river and I love exploring it with him.  In our small family expeditions, we’ve spotted the different barges and talked to their owners; chatted to fishermen and looked at their catch; picked up sticks to use as guns, bows and magic wands, splashed in the puddles on wet days, looked for butterflies and bumble bees on sunny days and fished for whirligig beetles in a stream beside the towpath. The river and its banks provide an endless range of activities for kids.  Now as Autumn is here, there’s the fun of spotting the different colours in leaves and fruits and popping ripe blackberries into our mouths as we go.

River Barrow for Kids

Going Fishing for Beetles – Barrow Towpath

The River Barrow for Groups

I was delighted this summer to be at the launch of the new barrowriver.ie website and the fantastic phone app created by Ingenious Ireland.  Hopefully they will bring lots more people to explore this fabulous river.

Walking the Barrow Way

Walking the Barrow Way

This Autumn, I’ve had the chance to explore the river with other groups of people.  As part of the Carlow Autumn Walking festival organised by Carlow Tourism, I led a group of 47 along the towpath from Clashganny Lock and up through the grounds of Borris House pointing out native trees and shrubs to the adults and shaking spiders from the trees to keep the children entertained.

Guelder Rose

Guelder Rose on the Barrow towpath

Today I walked from Maganey Bridge to Carlow Town with another group as part of Féile an Fhómahir.  As we walked we looked at hips, haws and sloes in the hedgerows, searched for the last few vetch flowers, spotted galls on rose and willow and caught a Red Admiral and a Speckled Wood butterfly in a net to take a closer look.

Rose Gall

Rose Gall

The River Barrow for Schools

Next week, I’ll take another walk along the river bank with a group of school children as part of the Heritage in Schools scheme and hopefully pass on some of my love for the river and the wildlife along its banks to them.

Speckled Wood Butterfly

Speckled Wood Butterfly

For solitary rambles to check out what’s happening in the hedgerows, and outdoor adventure for a family of three or group walks to share the wonders of nature with others, the River Barrow is perfect for all and I hope to enjoy many more walks along its banks throughout the seasons.  Browse the website or contact me if you’d like to know how Wildways Adventures could help you explore the River Barrow or other places.