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Irish Canal Ultra Series

Barrow Line Race 30 Mile Course Change

Unfortunately, due to ongoing works and closures of the Blueway on the Barrow Line of the Grand Canal between Monasterevin and Rathangan, it will not be possible to hold the Barrow Line Race on the Barrow Line in 2022.

The event will now take place on the Main Line of the Grand Canal, starting at Tullamore and running 30 miles east to Robertstown. This means there will be no change to the meeting location for the bus, the finish line or the distance for the event.

The race will go ahead as planned meeting at Robertstown on Saturday 21st of May, getting on a bus which will leave all the runners to the start line now in Tullamore and they will run the 30 miles back to the finish at Robertstown. The entire run is on the Grand Canal Way and there will also be two bag drops along the route near Daingean (about 10 miles in) and Edenderry (about 20 miles in).

New route from Tullamore to Robertstown along the Main Line of the Grand Canal

Course Description

The run will now start out on the north bank of the Grand Canal at the start of Fiona Pender Way on the east side of Tullamore.

Bury Bridge, Tullamore Harbour where the run will start.

Heading east back towards Robertstown runners will stay on the north bank gradually climbing up from the 26th Lock just outside Tullamore to the 21st Lock at Ballycommon in a distance of 5 miles or 8km.

Bolands Lock Keeper Cottage, 26th Lock Tullamore

After passing the 21st Lock runners will then cross over the dam in front of Campbell’s Bridge which is the entrance to the former Kilbeggan Line of the Grand Canal.

Campbell’s Bridge and Dam over the old dry Kilbeggan Line at Ballycommon.

Staying on the main line with the water on your right hand side the Grand Canal Greenway passes through some bogland before reaching Daingean about 14km into the run.

Warehouse at Daingean

After Daingean, at the next bridge, Killeen Bridge will be the first bag drop. This is roughly 10 miles / 16km into the route.

Runners will encounter several more bridges over the next 9 miles /15km all the while staying on the north bank of the Grand Canal with the water on your right, passing through Rhode on the way towards Edenderry.

Rhode Bridge

The 2nd bag drop will be just before Edenderry at Colgan’s Bridge 18 miles /30 km into the run. Just after Colgan’s Bridge runners will run up the steep Downshire Bridge to cross over the Edenderry Branch of the Grand Canal before coming down on the other side.

Downshire Bridge over the Edenderry Branch

The first 18miles /30km of the run is on a soft stone, tar or road surface. Once past Edenderry runners have a 4 mile /7km stretch on grass as they move towards the 20th Lock at Ticknevin.

Looking east from Bord Na Móna Bridge between Hartley Bridge and Hamilton Bridge

After passing the 20th Lock, it is back to a road surface again and it is a short run to Hartley Bridge at Ticknevin where runners need to be cautious as they cross the road over to the other side while still remaining on the north bank of the canal.

It is another 3km before runners come to Hamilton Bridge where runners need to cross to the south bank of the canal. This is the first time the canal is crossed on the run and comes 25 miles/ 40km into the run.

Hamilton Bridge which must be crossed.

Once on the other side it is just short of 3km before runners reach a gate for a short grass stretch coming into Allenwood. After the short grass stretch, runners come on to a main road approaching Shee or Scow Bridge which they most cross back onto the north bank of the Canal to rejoin the Grand Canal Greenway. This crossing is at 27 miles /45km into the run.

Shee Bridge which must be crossed

Once back on the north bank it is a straight run in for the last 3 miles towards Robertstown, passing south of Allenwood, by the 19th lock Lowtown and the split for the Barrow Line and finally the last leg towards Binn’s Bridge and Robertstown.

Old Grand Canal Hotel, Robertstown

By royalcanalrunner

Ultra Distance Runner and Royal Canal Enthusiast.

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