This one is very difficult to find, because the passage is sunk below ground level and you can't see it until you are right on top of it, so the directions on this page will be very useful to anyone wishing to visit this wonderful little tomb.
The short 2m long passage and chamber are set into a westward facing slope with fine views of Knocknarea (County Sligo), but it's hard to say what the passage aligns to.
The main reason for visiting this site is to see the very unusual carvings on its orthostats . These are quite unlike any others found in Ireland. They are also the only passage tomb art found in the west of Ireland.
The carvings now seem to be eroding quite badly and it is a crime that these rare examples are left to the wrath of the elements.
A barrow is essentially a mound of earth over one or more burials. They are more usually to be dated to the Bronze Age. There are many forms of barrow including ring, bowl, long and bell barrows.
Ring barrows are formed by digging a circular trench or fosse around a central burial, with no mound.
Bowl barrows are formed by heaping up soil over the burial(s) from a surrounding fosse, these often have an external bank too (see Ballyremon Commons (County Wicklow)).
Bell barows are simply round mounds with no fosse or external bank.
Long barrows are rare in Ireland and are more common in southwest England. Their shape is basically ovoid rather than round (see Ballynoe (County Down))
Click Thumbnail to View Full Size Image
Turn right out of the Carrowmore visitors' centre car park and then right again. Take the next left turn and continue for aroun 500m until you pass a ruined schoolhouse on the right. Shortly after this there is a bungalow and house (under construction when I was here) on the left. Walk along the farm track at the side of the bungalow. Stop when you reach a large tree. Walk up the hill to the right of the track at right angles to it. Be careful you do not fall into the chamber, which you should come across about 60m from the top fence!
This is an explanation of (and a bit of a disclaimer for) the coordinates I provide.
Where a GPS figure is given this is the master for all other coordinates. According to my Garmin these are quite accurate.
Where there is no GPS figure the 6 figure grid reference is master for the others. This may not be very accurate as it could have come from the OS maps and could have been read by eye. Consequently, all other cordinates are going to have inaccuracies.
The calculation of Longitude and Latitude uses an algorithm that is not 100% accurate. The long/lat figures are used as a basis for calculating the UTM & ITM coordinates. Consequently, UTM & ITM coordinates are slightly out.
UTM is a global coordinate system - Universal Transverse Mercator - that is at the core of the GPS system.
ITM is the new coordinate system - Irish Transverse Mercator - that is more accurate and more GPS friendly than the Irish Grid Reference system. This will be used on the next generation of Irish OS maps.