Lyracrumpane Mass Path – The resting place of Fionn Mac Cumhaill.
Lyracrumpane or Ladhar an Crompain which means the space between converging rivers is located in the Stack’s Mountains of north Kerry between the Smearlagh river and the Crumpane river. The rivers converge just downstream from Lyracrumpane bridge. Folklore states that Fionn Mac Cumhaill, chief of Na Fianna fell to his death in the Stack’s mountains and is buried in Lyracrumpane.
Directions to Trailhead
Take the N21 road between Limerick and Tralee. Approx 3 km outside the town of Castleisland heading towards Limerick / Abbeyfeale, turn left onto a minor road signposted for Lyracrumpane.
Follow this road along forest plantations and bogland for approx 12 kms, until your reach the Four
Elms pub on your left. Park here. GPS - N 52 20.040’ W 009 30.089’
Distance: 6.5 km
Estimated Time: 1.5 - 2 hrs
GPS: N52 15.7960 W009 27.2380
Leaving the Four Elms pub, in front of you is a hand drawn and painted map board which shows the route of the Mass Path. Follow the green arrows along the route.
From A to B
Turn left along the road going downhill, passing a traditional pump with natural spring water gushing out of it. Fill up your water bottle here for the journey ahead. Turn right after approximately 400 m into a forest track. You are now on the Lyracrumpane Mass Path. The local faithful used this route to walk to church every Sunday for many years. Soon you walk along the bank of the river Smearlagh, an important spawning ground for salmon.
From B to C
Cross the Smearlagh River at the metal bridge, the village church sits at the other side of it. Walk through the church yard and out the gate, turning left onto the road. You will have passed 2 stones along the way by now with inscriptions on them. These stones commemorate the wisdom of Fr John
O’Donoghue, author and poet, who’s memory is held dear in the sentiments of the Lyracrumpane community.
From C to D
Passing the picnic area at the forestry site on your right along the road, your walking loop continues straight ahead. However, the map board and seat provided by the forestry services offers an
informative break on the journey.
From D to A
Continue following the green arrows which take you along the side of the local playing fields. If the time is right you could catch a game of gaelic football being played between Lyracrumpane and its local rivals. Follow the route behind the community centre and along the river Smearlagh once more. This route brings you back to the metal bridge. Continue straight ahead again along the mass path and back to the Four Elms pub.