Portal Tomb

Situated on a golf course at the Ballyscanlan Hotel County Louth, the Proleek portal tomb is one of the most photographed dolmens in Ireland. Standing at around 3.5 metres high this huge megalith has a capstone 3.8 metres in length and weighing at least 35 tons balanced on three uprights. The two front or portal stones are both over 2 metres high and as you can see from the picture below the last remaining stone, a side stone, has been buttressed at a later date by other stones crudely cemented into the ground.

Folklore: Known as the Giant's Load, it is believed it was carried to here by the Scottish giant named Parrah Boug McShagean, who is said to be buried nearby. Local legend says that if you throw a small stone on top of the capstone and it stays there, you will be married within the year.


Discovery Map 29: 0820 1104. Last visit Jan 2008.

Longitude: 6° 20' 54" W

Latitude: 54° 2' 14" N

Proleek Wedge Tomb

Close by is an almost unmentioned wedge shaped gallery tomb. To visit the dolmen you must pass by this long wedge tomb. The gallery is 6 metres in length and 1.5 metres wide at the west end, narrowing to just over a metre wide at the east end, which is covered by two remaining roof stones. At the west or nearest end in the image below, is a large septal slab closing the gallery. You can also see how the construction of the gallery tomb has been very precise.

Situated: About 4 miles north of Dundalk on the N1 Newry road you will come to a roundabout signposted for the Ballymascanlon Hotel, follow the signs for the hotel, at the left hand side of the car park is a gateway signposted Proleek dolmen follows the signs and take the pathway across the golf course, the tombs are on the grounds of the golf course.

Discovery Map 29: 0827 1101. Last visit Jan 2008.

Longitude: 6° 20' 50" W

Latitude: 54° 2' 13" N

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Photos: Jim Dempsey.

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