Lough Shannagh – swim in the centre of the Mourne mountains in soft, peaty waters of the Lake of the Foxes. Banns Road track winds uphill, crossing the Mourne Wall and Miner’s Hole River to Lough Shannagh. At the south end of the lough there is a small gravel beach. For great views of the lough, continue around to the right (east) towards Doan, a small rocky mountain at 594m high, which provides a good climb achievable by children but gives a real sense of having climbed a mountain, rewarded by superb views of the lough.
Take the Moyad (Mountain) Road B27 north from Kilkeel, 7km along there is a small car park at Banns Road with the track leading into the hills.
A shorter but much steeper route to the lough is from the parking area on the Slievenaman Road not far from Fofany Dam. Walk the path by Ott Mountain then follow the river up the steep climb to the Mourne wall between Slieve Loughshannagh and Cairn Mountain, climb over the wall and drop steeply down to the northwest of the lough.
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