Monday, October 06, 2008

2008 Ireland Trip -6 Sep 08, Part I

This is the Bayview B&B where we stayed in Clonakilty. I figured there would be some good birding locales at a place called "Bayview" and I wasn't wrong.

This B&B was very nice, but it was really frilly and it seemed so "not me," but I enjoyed the stay and the owners were very nice.

We started the day by doing some birding along the estuary. The big find of the morning was this black-tailed godwit. There were a couple of them out in the marshy field. I also saw purple sandpipers, grey herons, little egrets and black-headed gulls in Clonakilty.

The primary reason we stayed in Clonakilty was so that we would be near Dromberg Stone Circle. I wanted to get there early in the morning just in case this was a tourist hotspot.

It was pretty easy to find, but it wasn't really a hotspot for visitors, although there were plenty that came through while we were there.

We saw signs such as this one all over Ireland, especially near ruins and other attractions. I wonder if litigation lawyers are as bad over there as they are here in the states.

This is the entrance to the site.

The sign boards are all fading in the weather - I'm not sure there's much sunshine in Ireland to fade these, but I guess UV irradiation passes through cloud cover as well as in clear skies.

The stone circle isn't a large one - maybe 30 feet across. The stones are not all that tall, either, which you can see in the pictures posted below where there are people in the image for size comparisons.

The lighting changed dramatically during the time we were there. You can see the ocean there in the background.

There was an interesting assortment of coins and trinkets left as offerings in the circle.

The ground was pretty soggy from all the rain that had been occurring all month and last.

Blue sky started to appear while we were there.

Another angle. The farmland in the background is lovely in the morning light.

This looks like an alter stone, but I wonder if it has fallen on its side. The site was discovered and excavated by a farmer many years ago.

Another view,

and another.

There's Michael, getting in tune with his inner Druid.

Up the hill from the stone circle was an excavation of a couple of other buildings.

These were probably similar to the beehive huts seen on the Dingle Peninsula.

This and the following two signs can be clicked on for a larger image. You can read all about them.

This is the view from the huts back to the stone circle.

A view of the surrounding countryside.

More tourists arrived as the morning progressed.

I particularly enjoyed meeting this guy and his dog. The dog breed is a Deer Hound Lurcher, which I learned is a Scottish breed. The parental breeds were grey hound and terrier. The fur was very soft and silky. This is obviously a working dog that needs a lot of exercise.

Last view of the circle with sun coming out from behind the clouds. Next post will be on our tour of the Beare Peninsula later in the day.

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