How is it one remembers a track encounter from 25 years ago? Old memories came flooding back when I started on this track. Back then the Cork Orienteering Club did a walk up this 'Lost Valley', as I remember they called it. The weather was ferocious and we were bent into the gale for the entire time. This walk was more benign, though no less challenging.
Start at the Church Q54080 10118 and walk (very carefully) back the main road to enter the track Q54482 10133 at the gate by the road bend. After a short distance veer to the right at the T-junction. The local farmer had no objections to our presence and in fact the track is way-marked with a red monk (though this route is not specified on the map!). The walk in along the Glenahoo River valley is like entering a massive cathedral without a roof. The sides loom way above you and it seems as if there is no escape at the far end. The track continues to the head of the valley and swings up left along the river.
At the brook crossing Q56207 07584 we left the track and followed the brook up along to its source. The waterfalls and rock pools are majestical, and poor conditions even enhance the experience! Keep high up on the bank, as the sides are extremely steep with a clear fall to the brook below. From the brook source head due N to the middle of the col. Then swing NE and over a sheep fence to the conical summit of Coumbaun.
Head back SW to the col and then directly W to the summit of Beenatoor. The gale coming up out of the valley over the ridge is spectacular. Head N down the ridge until Q55864 09162 and then descend NW down to the forest corner. Either head down the right-hand side of the field or pick up the forest track located in the SE corner of forest enclosure.
Swing right at the valley track and retrace you steps, remembering to swing down left at the track junction. There is good wholesome food to be had nearby in Stradbally, if required.