|Visited 14th May 2012
Wrote impressions down immediately after the visit "Brilliantly atmospheric site overlooking Bantry Bay and the western mountains". This site is well signposted and involves an uphill walk on a narrow road. It is possible to drive up but parking spaces very limited.
In his superb little book “Exploring West Cork” Jack Roberts has written about Kealkil as follows:
“This is deservedly one of the best known and most important sites in the area consisting of an alignment of two large standing stones, a five stone circle and a radial cairn. The site is situated on a hill to the south of Kealkil village and is sign posted at major junctions.
The site was excavated in the 1930’s and the largest of the alignment stones was replaced in its socket. This originally stood at over 5 metres high (17 ft in the original excavation report) but about two metres of the lower portion had broken when it fell. The cairn was one of the earliest radial stone cairns to be properly identified and these comparatively rare and very curious monuments still baffle archaeology in the present day. Perhaps the suggestion that they were used as astronomical calendars is the best interpretation so far put forward but as yet no one has deciphered how they may have served this function. If megalithic architecture was based on a system of orientation and astronomy then this site with its outlook across a mountainous panorama to the west and north could lend itself to a wide range of interpretive possibilities.”
Footnote: The information board says Kealkil is from 'An Chaolchoill' meaning 'the narrow wood'.
Posted by tjj
22nd May 2012ce
Edited 22nd May 2012ce