Planning Your Route This book describes the best route along the canal bank for walkers. It should be noted that the underfoot conditions along any given stretch can be variable, ranging from a narrow grassy track to a surfaced public road. In the text we have indicated significant changes to the towpath characteristics but inclement weather can change a normally accessible grassy bank into a difficult muddy stretch. Footwear appropriate to the time of year is important. There are one hundred and twenty kilometres of canal channel wholly within Co. Kildare, Our leaflet describes three major sections: the Royal Canal, the Grand Canal, and the Barrow Line. It divides the latter two into shorter sections of about thirteen to twenty kilometres in length, which will help with walk planning. A walking pace of about five kilometres per hour is a good planning average. The towpaths can be tackled in all but the most severe of weather. Do remember that sections on the bog ramparts have little shelter so in a bad weather conditions, warm clothing is a must. Do take along a flask and sandwiches because some of the more remote stretches have little in way of shops. Keep a close eye on children near deep water such as the lock chambers and also on the public road sections of the route 6