Visits For October, 2007

Sunday, 7th October 2007

Rock Scribings In County Louth

The day started off with lots of fog, so I didn't hold out much hope for my search for rock art in County Louth. Luckily, as soon as I'd cleared Dublin the fog cleared, too. Since the M1 tore its way through Meath and Louth I haven't driven around the back roads much, so it was quite a pleasure to get out and about properly.

I had intended to head right up as far as Carlingford, but I was frankly too tired after rooting out the three rock art panels I did manage to find. One panel eluded me, so I presume that the Drumcah panel has become overgrown. On the way back I stopped off at Rathiddy standing stone, which poeticaly had a crow standing on its top as I approached.

My trip started with a visit to check out the amazing looking chambered cairn at Fieldstown, but both of the cairns there are now gorse covered. Again, an important prehistoric site has been allowed to become hidden and the roots of the gorse bushes can only be doing harm. This monument should be cleared and should be made a National Monument.

Fieldstown (Co. Louth)Chambered Cairn1 New Image
Fieldstown (Co. Louth)Cairn2 New Images
Drumgonnelly (Co. Louth)Rock Art7 New Images
Drumsinnot (Co. Louth)Rock Art4 New Images
Cortial (Co. Louth)Rock Art3 New Images
Cuchulain's Stone - Rathiddy (Co. Louth)Standing Stone6 New Images
Tullagee (Co. Louth)Rock Art2 New Images

Sunday, 14th October 2007

Not a Lot of Action in North Wexford

The plan was to visit all the standing stones marked in north Wexford. The result was visiting the sites of a lot of standing stones in north Wexford. So many of them have disappeared. All I found was one rather sadly fallen roadside stone. Feeling somewhat deflated by this I headed southeast to look for a bullaun stone. I found that, but it isn't exactly going to set the megalithic world on fire.

On a much better note, the proofing of Monu-Mental About Prehistoric Waterford is completed and it will soon be going to the printers. We are anticipating a late November release.

It's been a long time since I added any hi-res images to megalithomania, so I think I will endevour to do some over the coming weeks. I will also replace some of the terrible ones that I do have available! Unfortunately I don't have an easy mechanism in place to do upload these at the moment (which is why I haven't added any for a long time) so I will probably code that first (which is why it will happen over the coming weeks.)

Aughnamaulmeen (Co. Wexford)Standing Stone2 New Images
Riesk (Co. Wexford)Bullaun Stone3 New Images

Saturday, 27th October 2007

Rain Doesn't Stop Play in Donegal

The day started out with a list of bullaun stones in Donegal and the intention of visiting them and then heading for Inishowen and seeing some rock art. The bullaun-stone-visiting part of the day didn't go exactly to plan. In fact, the only bullaun stone I saw wasn't actually on the list!

I started off with one of the few portal tombs I haven't visited yet and then headed north for Inishowen. After finding some very worn rock art and some not-so-very worn rock art, I got into conversation with a man, Desi McCillion, on the shores of Lough Fada. It turns out that he was a local history buff, so the conversation carried on for some time. He didn't know of the one stone I had located, so I showed him where that is and he told me of some nice sites, including a Christianised bullaun stone. This went straight on my list. Sadly, he also informed me that one of the people I was trying to track down, Conell Byrne, had passed away this year. Now, I never knew him, but everywhere I went in the eare looking for information his name drew instant recognition. He was a very well respected man in these parts. He had a wealth of local history knowledge, but sadly much of that is lost, because it was mainly kept in his head. Although not well-known outside of Inishowen, I feel I must mention his passing and what a loss it is to us all.

Anyway, after my conversation with Desi I set off to see a few sites from my original list and a few sites that he had told me about. I finally arrived on Doagh Isle in the pouring rain. It was lashing down. In a break in the weather I headed into the fields with some GPS coords provided by Ken Williams. The panels were still on display and they are still beautiful! There is masses of rock art on Doagh Isle and a lot of it is unique to the area. I then found two other panels nearby, but these are very worn. Then the rain started up again and I got soaked desperately trying to find one beautiful panel that I had an illustration of, but all I got is wet ... very wet!

All-in-all it was a good day. Some tombs, a stone circle, some high crosses, a bullaun stone and several rock art panels. Unfortunately, the weather was so bad and the light so weird that not many of the photos of the worn rock art panels turned out. I will post them and I'll mark where the motifs are, but with some of them you'll just have to take my word for it ... or, even better, go out and see them for yourself.

Cloghroe (Co. Donegal)Portal Tomb6 New Images
Meendoran (Co. Donegal)Rock Art2 New Images
Meendoran (Co. Donegal)Rock Art2 New Images
Bocan (Co. Donegal)Stone Circle4 New Images
Knockergrana (Co. Donegal)Court Tomb5 New Images
Claggan (Co. Donegal)Church2 New Images
Clonca (Co. Donegal)Cross4 New Images
Carrowmore (Co. Donegal)High Cross2 New Images
Carrowmore (Co. Donegal)Bullaun Stone2 New Images
Carrowmore (Co. Donegal)High Cross2 New Images
Carrowreagh (Co. Donegal)Cross-Inscribed Stone2 New Images
Magheranaul (Co. Donegal)Rock Art3 New Images
Magheranaul (Co. Donegal)Rock Art3 New Images
Magheranaul (Co. Donegal)Standing Stone2 New Images
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