Killarney

Gap of Dunloe

This is a wild and rugged gap excavated by forging ice flows during the Ice Age. Following signposts off the R562 road to Killorglin one comes to Kate Kearney’s Cottage. During the mid 1800s a local girl ran a sibin (illegal drinking house) here for travellers passing through the Gap. The Cottage eventually became a coaching inn, where the hostess, Kate, allegedly cast her spell on all who entered and toasted them with her special brew. It is now a pub, restaurant and souvenir shop with lots of lively music and dancing sessions in the evening. By car or coach, on foot or bicycle, one can reach Kate Kearney’s Cottage. Beyond Kate’s a road leads up through a narrow gorge created by a glacial breach, on the left is the Purple Mountain and on the right is the MacGillcuddy’s Reeks. Here are to be found waterfalls, mountain lakes and imposing cliffs. Once the top is reached the road passes through Gearhameen Valley, a grazing ground for Red Deer, a fine view of the Upper Lake surrounded by its own Oakwood’s and with a backdrop of the beautiful Mangerton Mountain.
The trip through the Gap can be undertaken on foot, by bicycle, on horseback, or by jaunting car, the whole trip is about 10km. When Lord Brandon’s Cottage is reached, after some refreshments, one has the choice of taking a boat on the Upper Lake, passing through the Long Range (Middle Lake) to the Meeting of the Waters under Brickeen Bridge, and actually shooting the rapids on the way to the Lower Lake and back to Ross Castle.
Ogham Stones Dunloe: The earliest writing in Ireland began probably around 300AD and this we know from stones inscribed in the alphabet known as Ogham. Ogham is called after the Celtic god of writing named Ogmios. The alphabet is made up of sets of up to 5 strokes on, diagonally across, or on either side of a central line. The central line begins at the edge of the stone.