Stone Rings and the Ring of Kerry

Trip Start Apr 05, 2006
Trip End Apr 27, 2006

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Flag of Ireland  , Munster,
Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Beautiful sunny and warm day after a wet night.  Headed off to Castletownbere about 10:30am.  Found the Castletownbere Standing Stones and the old Ring Fort to the north of town.  Only about half the stones were standing but still an interesting site.  The Fort was essentially a raised platform of stone and earth above what was originally a bog at relatively high altitude. 

Down to the Dunboy Castle which took a bit of getting to due to heavy earth-moving equipment blocking the track in.  They were working on the ruined mansion. The castle was little more than foundations and part walls. 

On to Eyeries and Ardgroom; the latter with a sign to a stone ring off the main road but not on the smaller roads, so we gave up and moved on.  Just before Lauragh we found another sign to Cashelkeelty Stone Circles. After walking along a muddy track that climbed up the bubbling stream and the occasional small waterfall, we eventually came to rough mountain moorland grazed by black-faced scottish sheep.  A track (an old green road) heading west up the slopes led to the stones but after a fair walk, the girls decided not to come all the way.  At least two arrangements of stones exist but in such rocky country, it is difficult to know which are country stones and which are fallen, apart from the obviously aligned stones.  The 1st set pointed east to west and the 2nd south-west to north-east.  Other smaller stones appear to have been aligned towards the north a bit further on. 

We had lunch at our roadside park before moving on to Kenmare and the Ring of Kerry to Sneem and castle Cove.  At the latter we found a stone fortress; Staigue, which appears to have been occupied a few hundred years BC and probably by a chieftain.  Back home, stopping for tea at Glengarriff.  The girls had Irish Stew and Austin had Roast Beef and vegetables - all very nice and tender.  Finished the night with a cuppa and packing for our departure next day.
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