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Ballygar County Galway Ireland
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Ballygar, an attractive little town, on the N63, is situated by the River Suck, which forms the county boundary with County Roscommon, and thus is an ideal base for the angler. It is a limestone river, rich in fly life, and was once regarded as one of the prime trout fisheries in the country. It also runs low in summer because of a drainage scheme. Ballygar Carnival has been as annual event since 1945. It is a festival of entertainment for all ages. Events include, dancing, discos, funfair, street entertainment, fancy dress, country fair & sport tournaments.

A stroll along the River Suck

The River Suck close to Ballygar

The best of the trout fishing is from early in the season to about mid-June. The average size of the trout is said to be approximately 0.75 lb. The best of the mayfly hatch is from Rookhill downstream. Stretches that are very worthwhile are in the vicinity of Tryhill and Ilandcave Bridges,and also at Nolan's Fort.
Hollygrove is a 50 acre lake located between Ballygar and Athleague, upstream of Rookwood Bridge on the River Suck system. It is within half a kilometre of the main River Suck. The lake is a fairly shallow , typically 5 feet with two deep veins where bank fishing is best. While all coarse fish are present it is primarily a Tench and Pike fishery. There are a good stock of Hybrids, Roach and Rudd also. You can expect Tench to 7lbs and Pike to 25lbs+. Specimen Tench have been recorded over recent years. Angling for Tench is best during night hours. For coarse angling pre-baiting is always recommended for best results. Most Pike are caught trolling dead bait. Spinning from the Island has proved successful using an American 'Jerk' bait.

Patrick Sarsfield Gilmore
Patrick Sarsfield Gilmore (below), considered the "father of the American concert band," was born in Ballygar, Ireland in 1829. After immigrating to the United States in 1849, P.S. Gilmore settled in Boston, where he began his long and illustrious career as one of America's foremost bandleaders and concert organizers.
Beyond his accomplishments as bandleader and concert organizer, P.S. Gilmore was also a successful composer. One of his Civil War songs, "When Johnny Comes Marching Home," first appeared as part of The Soldier's Return March and was later published separately under the pen name Louis Lambert.

East Galway Walking Festival Patrick Sarsfield Gilmore
Walking Festival

The "Suck Valley Way" is the West of Ireland's most unique and diverse lowland walk. This 100km way-marked stretch is suitable for all types of walker and can be taken at stages of varying length.
The River Suck links a 60 mile stretch of countryside in West Roscommon and East Galway known as The Suck River Valley. Walkers can enjoy this unspoiled countryside by walking The Suck Valley Way. Towns and villages in East Galway will come alive with guided walks and tours, dramatisations, music, poetry, exhibitions, clan reunions, traditional games and dancing during this series of events between 22nd June and 12th July. The events celebrate the 400th anniversary of the historic march of the famous Irish chieftain, O'Sullivan Beara. He led his followers from Beara in West Cork to Breifne in Leitrim in 1603. This route passed through the many towns and villages of East Galway who are now celebrating this historic march with a variety of historic, cultural and fun events. The events are being co-ordinated by "Galway Greenways", a group of volunteers from the 11 Galway communities, and form part of a national series of events being run by 65 communities along the route. The route taken by O'Sullivan Beara is currently being developed into a long distance walking, cycling, heritage and clans route, known as the "Beara Breifne Greenway".


Ballygar's long street and square are kept neat and tidy, and it is not surprising that the town has won a number of Bord Failte Tidy Town awards. Just 1.5km north of the town, lies Aghrane Woods with lay-by, picnic sites and forest walks.
It was also the home of famed Galway footballer, Mattie McDonagh, the only Connacht man to win four All-Ireland Senior Football medals.


Towns & Localities in County Galway

 Aran Islands | Athenry | Ballinasloe | Ballygar | Barna | Carna | Carraroe | Claregalway | Clarinbridge | Clifden | Clonbur | Corofin
Connemara | Corrandulla | Dunmore | Galway City | Glenamaddy | Gort | Headford | Kinvara | Leenane | Loughrea | Milltown | Monivea
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