Mary White hiking on the Barrow Track in Carlow. Photo: Tony Maher
We are delighted you have checked out our website. Here’s a little bit about us and how we came to set up Blackstairs Ecotrails.
Mary White is a former Green Party Member of the Irish Parliament for Carlow/Kilkenny and former Minister of State for Equality, Human Rights and Integration. She is a linguist, walking guide, forager, flora and fauna specialist. She speaks to a wide public on Deep Ecology, Eco Tourism, Climate Change, Sustainability and other green issues.
Mary runs Blackstairs Ecotrails, an award-winning Eco-tourism business in the Blackstairs Mountains and the Barrow valley, with her husband Robert and daughter Dorothy-Ellen.
Mary is also a well- known conference speaker on green issues. Mary has written a walk guide to these hills – Walking in the Blackstairs with the late Joss Lynam. After a long Mount Leinster Anti-Mining campaign, Mary also wrote a book called Mount Leinster Environment Mining and Politics (still in print) to highlight the beauty of the Mount Leinster area.
Robert is from Co. Carlow and was brought up near the Barrow River, with a deep love of wild life and ecology. A passion which he later studied. Robert is a geographer and mathematician, forager and walk guide. They met in Trinity in their final year and have spent 40 years happily together, exploring the local environment and keeping records of flowers, birds, fungi and grasses.
Their Eco tourism business is about sharing their passion for the environment with their guests and developing a sustainable business in the heart of the Blackstairs Mountains.
Both are members of An Taisce, Bird Watch Ireland and the Irish Wild Life Trust. They have also been involved in surveys for the Breeding Atlas of Irish Birds and completed surveys of over -wintering birds in Ireland. They have been recording birds, butterflies and fungi in the Mount Leinster area for over forty years. Over the years they have tracked changes in the local biodiversity due to agricultural practices and climate change.
We look forward to sharing this special part of rural Ireland with you.