In a effort to stay fit, ive decided to try and climb up to some of the more challenging sites to get to. This isnt too bad to get to and thankfully the weather was ok because Id say this could be a very bleak place on a bad day.
What I did was park at the church/graveyard and then walk up a pretty step part of the hill to the cross. Once over the lip you can see the hillfort that the passages are in. It is beside the OS height marker.
Im sure the wall around it was possibly built from the cairn material which is a real pity. It also blocks the views from the passages. I think I remember in Martin Brennans book that Chamber 1 is meant to be aligned to the north for the pole star/ moon?
However looking thru the passage you would imagine it looks out pretty low on the horizon, hard to tell really.
The basin is great but i couldnt make out any of the rock-art that is meant to be on it.
As an aside i found someones mobile phone, its a big hill so to come upon it is some luck. Handed it back anyway, never can get enough good karma!
The views up here are amazing but its also unusual how the hills to the north where chamber 1 is meant to be aligned to are quite low. Hard to pick out anything really that could be used as a marker.
The whole hill seems to be full of stone, strewn about the place, a lot of field walls made from good stone. I wonder is there any record of any destroyed monuments up here.
Description: Situated on the summit of Baltinglass Hill in the SE sector of Rathcoran hillfort (WI027-026001-). It was excavated in 1934-6 (Walshe 1941, 221-36) and was found to consist of a multiperiod kerbed cairn (diam. c. 27m) underneath which five structures were identified. The cairn material has been built up to form a massive protective wall around the monument (CUCAP, ASU 48). A kerb of large stones surrounded the cairn, and an inner kerb was revealed during excavation. Two stones of the inner kerb and one of the outer bear passage tomb art. The main tomb is on the N side of the cairn; a short passage (L 3.2m) within the cairn is roofed with slabs and leads to a chamber (diam. 2m) which contains three shallow recesses. It contains a stone basin with pecked ornament. On the S side of the cairn is another tomb comprising a chamber divided into three compartments; no evidence for a passage was found. Two of its stones bear passage tomb art. On the NW side of the cairn are the remains of a small corbelled structure, partly overlain by the inner kerb. Immediately SW of this was a small cist-like structure which is no longer visible. A fifth chamber stands inside the kerb to the E of the main tomb. The finds from the site include the cremations of at least three adults and one child, flint scrapers, Carrowkeel pottery, and bone pins. Finds from beneath the cairn included a stone axe, a flint javelin-head, scrapers, an egg-shaped stone, carbonised wheat grains and hazelnuts. A saddle quern was also found in the cairn material (Cooney 1981, 102-6). The site is referred to in the OS Name Books as a cave on the NE side of a large collection of stones. Another cairn lies 100m to the SW. (Walshe 1941, 221-36; Herity 1974, 259-60; Shee-Twohig 1981, 223)
The above description is derived from the published 'Archaeological Inventory of County Wicklow' (Dublin: Stationery Office, 1997). In certain instances the entries have been revised and updated in the light of recent research.