Ravensdale Forest


Ravensdale forest is situated just east of the M1 motorway approximately 8 km north of Dundalk.

Site Description

The site is mixed woodland rising steeply to the summit of Black Mountain (506m) with many kilometres of forest roads and tracks. There are three way marked trails in the forest, the Tain Trail, the Ring of Gullion and the short but interesting Ravensdale Loop. The forest is rich in archaeological features such as the standing stones just a short detour off the Ravensdale Loop and has many interesting features such as bridges and old driving roads. The forest is varied with many species including larch, Douglas fir, large beech and oak and of course Sitka spruce. With clear felling and re-planting the area has developed a broad range of forest types which add to its overall biodiversity and aesthetic appeal.
The Tain Trail - named for the legendary Bull of Cooley enters the forest at the southern end of the forest near Curralhir Bridge and follows forest roads and tracks to continue over the mountains into Omeath on Carlingford Lough. This national way marked trail is marked with the yellow walking man sign and offers a strenuous climb to the summit of approximately 2 - 3 hrs. However the walker will be rewarded with magnificent views. The Táin - TÁIN BÓ CULAINE - is the legendary tale of the attempted theft by Queen Maedbh of Connacht of the Brown Bull of Cooley and the exploits of Cúchulainn the Ulster hero to protect the Bull and Ulster from her armies.

A second trail - the Ring of Gullion - leaves from the car park and heads up the Ravensdale Loop trail and then follows the river before turning north towards the border with county Armagh where it continues on across the slopes of Clermont Hill.

The final trail is the short but interesting Ravendsale Loop. This hour long trail gives the walker a good insight into Ravensdale with a chance to see its river, bridges, large trees, standing stones and old coach roads. 

Ravensdale Forest Features

Archaeological, Picnic Site, Walking Trails,

How do I get there?

Take the new M1 motorway north, exit at the Jonesborough turnoff. Turn right and go over the motorway flyover, at roundabout take the second exit right for Ravensdale. After a short distance take minor road to the left, Ravensdale car park is located approximately 4 kilometres down this road on the left hand side.

Get directions to this site


No of car spaces:30
map legend

Contact Info

Contact name:Colm Brophy
Contact email:colm.brophy@coillte.ie