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Photographer's Note

The megalithic dolmen at Proleek, located in the legendary Cooley Peninsula, is one of the finest examples in Ireland, and is widely photographed and documented. Access to the dolmen is through the grounds of a hotel, and then across a golf course, but it is well worth a visit. Nearby is a wedge tomb, or gallery grave.

The Proleek dolmen, or portal tomb, consists of a chamber which faces towards the northwest. The giant roof stone, which measures 3.8m by 3.2m, is estimated to weigh about 30 tonnes or more, and is supported on two portal stones, each about 2.3 metres high. The archaeological term portal tomb is derived from the belief that the two large upright stones act as a portal or doorway into the burial chamber. It has been suggested the dolmen may once have been covered with a cairn of stones, but no evidence of this can be found. One of the support stones is buttressed by a modern stone and concrete support.

There are a number of smaller stones on the top of the roof stone. This is because there is a local folklore tale that says if you throw a stone up onto the roofstone and it stays up there, you will be married within a year!
(Two German Girls were having a go at this, unsuccessfully when i reached the dolmen, guess they wont be getting married this year. lol)

Another legend about the site tells why the capstone is known as the "Giant's Load". Apparently, it was carried to this point by a giant, said to be a Scottish giant, called Parrah Boug MacShagean, who according to local stories is buried nearby.

Thanks for looking :)

Gary

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Additional Photos by Gary McParland (codiac) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 38 W: 2 N: 297] (1756)
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