Day 94 Canal Walk (Photo A Day 2012)

This is the walk along Coalisland Canal. A favourite amongst those of us trying to keep fit or who enjoy a nice walk in the country. Local photographer Plunkett Scullion has got some great wild life photographs along this stretch of waterway between the town and the Blackwater River which links it to Lough Neagh the largest fresh water lake in Western Europe.

Coalisland Canal (sometimes known as The Tyrone Navigation) is a canal  is about 4.5 miles long. Construction of the canal began in 1733, but progress was slow and it was not officially opened until 1787. The canal was built to reduce the cost of transporting coal from the Tyrone coalfields to Dublin. An extension known as “Dukart’s Canal” was built to link the coalfields of Drumglass with the head of navigation at Coalisland. It opened in 1777, but was an engineering failure, and closed when the main canal opened. After some difficulties with the infrastructure, traffic slowly increased, and did not reach its peak until 1931. Traffic then declined rapidly, and the canal was abandoned in 1954

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