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Lough Derg


Lough Derg

Lough Derg is the second-largest lake (or lough) in Ireland and is the third-largest in the whole island (after Lough Neagh and Lough Corrib) . It is a long, relatively narrow lake, with shores in counties Clare (south-west), Galway (north-west), and North Tipperary (to the east). The lake is the last of the three largest on the River Shannon, with the other two, Lough Ree and Lough Allen lying further north. Some towns or villages on Lough Derg include Gary Kennedy, Portumna, Killaloe & Ballina, Dromineer, Terryglass and Mountshannon.

At its deepest, the lake is 36 metres[1] deep and covers an area of 118 km² (45.5 sq miles). The lake is a popular place for leisure boating, sailing and fishing. Close downstream of where Lough Derg empties into the Shannon are the falls of Doonass, the largest fall on the otherwise gently sloping river, with the nearby location of the world’s then-largest hydroelectric power plant at Ardnacrusha
in 1927.

In the nineteenth century, Lough Derg was an important artery from the port at Limerick to Dublin through the canals in the midlands of Ireland. Navigable over its full 40 km length, Lough Derg is today popular with cruisers and other pleasure traffic, as well as sailing and fishing. The University of Limerick have an activity centre by the lake, just north of Killaloe, where there are canoes, kayaks, windsurfing, sailing dingies, and other recreations.