Day 1: Tipperary Town to Cappawhite
The Multeen Way, from Tipperary Town to Milestone, is part of a 700km long walking trail from Dursey Island in Cork to Blacklion in Cavan and known as the Beara-Breifne Way.
We decided in August 2021 to begin walking the Beara-Breifne Way, taking it section by section, and opted to start with the Multeen Way as it was one of the shortest sections and closest to home. With winter evenings approaching, the time taken to travel further afield wouldn’t leave us with as much time for walking and, as we had only the weekends available to walk, it seemed wiser to leave the longer, more further afield sections, until summer had returned.
The Multeen Way
A warning here! The Multeen Way is listed on several websites as being 23km in length. I don’t know where this distance comes from. I plotted the route out on Viewranger and the distance was just over 33km. Armed with this knowledge, we split the route up into two days’ walking: Day 1 from Tipperary Town to Cappawhite, and Day 2 from Cappawhite to Milestone.
Day 1: Tipperary Town to Cappawhite
We actually walked almost 21km on the day, but I’ve allowed for some meandering around the Motte on the way out of Donohill, and for some wandering around the graveyard opposite.
We met up in Cappawhite at 10 o’clock in the morning and left a car in the square there. Cappawhite on a Sunday at 10am is very quiet and there was no problem parking the car. There’s a Centra shop where we were able to buy coffee and sausage rolls for the breakfast.
Then we drove back to Tipperary and parked the other car in the free car park in the town.
From there we walked down through the town and out past the post office to the road towards Donohill.
Tipperary to Donohill – Roads, roads ,roads
From Tipperary to Donohill involves walking by road, and there are a couple of roadside memorials along the way. The first is a memorial to three volunteer Anti-Treaty IRA members.
Volunteer Patrick Butler.
member of 8th Battalion, 3rd Tipperary Brigade, Old I.R.A.
His death was not registered.
On 28 July 1922, 3 members of the Anti-Treaty IRA, died at Kingswell, north of Tipperary town, Co. Tipperary, when the mine they were setting prematurely exploded.
The second memorial is that of Patricia O’Reilly who died in a road accident in 1999. I’ve included the memorial here because not only was the stone put on the roadside as a tribute to this lady, but it’s a reminder that the road is a dangerous one and to be wary while walking it.
Stopping at the Cross in Donohill
The gentleman above is John Crosse who owns Crosse’s bar in Donohill, and it was a pleasure to meet him. He was very hospitable towards us and, even though the pub was shut, he invited us in to use the facilities and chatted to us at length about the O’Sullivan Beara way, and about a local fair that was taking place that day. We were invited by him to come along to the fair but, unfortunately we spent a bit longer than we anticipated at the motte and the graveyard outside the town, and we still had a fair bit of ground to cover to reach Cappawhite.
Donohill Motte and Bailey
To the northeast of Donohill lies the earthwork mound (motte) of Donohill Castle which was attacked by O’Sullivan Beara’s people in the winter of 1622
You can leave the track for the Multeen Way and climb to the top of the Motte before descending once again and joining the track which passes by the cemetery and well.
I can’t pass by a graveyard. I have to stop in for a while and look at the headstones while contemplating the people who have gone before us.
While strolling around Donohill cemetery, I came across the grave of Dan Breen and that of his wife, Brigid Malone. Dan Breen was an Irish Volunteer and had taken part in the Soloheadbeg ambush in 1919. Findagrave.com gives further details on Dan Breen, and I’ve since bought a copy of his book ‘My Fight for Irish Freedom’ which I’m looking forward to reading.
St. James’ Well
We stopped at the well, a short walk down from the cemetery. Like many other wells around the country, it lays claim to healing properties for eyesight. So, seeing as (‘scuse the pun) my last prescription glasses had been increased in strength, I thought I’d bless myself with the holy water and say a quick prayer.
Inside the well there’s a metal cup on a long chain that I used to lift up some water from the shallow pool within. I wouldn’t advise drinking it though. It looked a bit murky.
The Cattle are (Fol)lowing….
I have never been followed by a herd of cattle before, but these insisted on getting quite close to us until we managed to give them the slip at the end of the field where there was an electric fence.
Further down the track, I stopped just in time to avoid getting a burst from this fence strung across our path. I’m just glad I’d chosen this moment in time to pay attention to what I was doing.
We came to the beautiful entrance gates above that led to what looked like a private house where there was a trail that took us around the back of the house.
If this is what giant hogweed looks like, then I have never seen giant hogweed before. It was ENORMOUS!!
I tried to take a selfie with the hogweed, for perspective, but that didn’t really work out. Partly because I didn’t want to get too close to it, although it looks like it’s dying off at the moment.
Sea of Grass
We had to walk around this field to get to the road to Cappawhite. It truly is a sea of grass, and I actually felt sea sick walking though it. I even feel nauseous looking at the photo.
The Road to Cappawhite
These beautiful gates marked the end of our journey through the fields and the start of our walk along the road again. Thankfully we didn’t have to walk on the road as another stile crossed the wall on the far side and we were able to walk inside the wall and away from the traffic.
Someone in Cappawhite (the Tidy Towns maybe?) has done an AMAZING job on the flowers along the road into Cappawhite. There are beautiful blooms of dahlias, gladioli and sedum to name but a few.
Just look at these fabulous walls. That looks like a millstone in the centre.
I must have taken more photographs of flowers and gates than I did of anything else, but it was really the most bright and pleasant road I’ve ever walked – a lovely way to finish that section of the Multeen Way.