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East Clare Area , Cen: Slieve Bernagh Subarea
Feature count in area: 9, by county: Clare: 8, Galway: 1, OSI/LPS Maps: 52, 58
Highest Place: Moylussa 531.6m

Starting Places (6) in area East Clare:
Ballycuggeran Forest, Clarisford Park, Crag Bridge CP, Glenagalliagh, Glenwanish, Two Mile Gate CP

Summits & other features in area East Clare:
Cen: Slieve Bernagh: Ballykildea Mountain 412m, Cragnamurragh 526m, Glennagalliagh Mountain 446m, Moylussa 531.6m
N: Slieve Aughty: Cappaghabaun Mountain East 378m, Cashlaundrumlahan 358m, Maghera 400m
S: Sixmilebridge: Knockanuarha 309m, Woodcock Hill 310m

Note: this list of places may include island features such as summits, but not islands as such.
Rating graphic.
Ballykildea Mountain, 412m Hill Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé A name in Irish,
Place Rating ..
, Clare County in Munster province, in Carn Lists, Ballykildea Mountain is the 891st highest place in Ireland. Ballykildea Mountain is the second most easterly summit in the East Clare area.
Grid Reference R66170 73722, OS 1:50k mapsheet 58
Place visited by: 45 members, recently by: nerabytes, Krzysztof_K, Colin Murphy, garrettd, maryblewitt, JohnRea, sarahryanowen, John.geary, LorraineG60, MichaelG55, Voyager, FrankMc1964, wicklore, oakesave, maike
I visited this place: NO (You need to be a logged-in member for this.)
Longitude: -8.502092, Latitude: 52.813668, Easting: 166170, Northing: 173722, Prominence: 67m,  Isolation: 2.6km
ITM: 566152 673750
Bedrock type: Greywacke sandstone, (Broadford Formation)

  Short or GPS IDs, 6 char: BlykMn, 10 char: BlykldMntn

Gallery for Ballykildea Mountain (Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé) and surrounds
Summary for Ballykildea Mountain (Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé): A long approach from the north
Summary created by Colin Murphy 2023-03-31 11:43:11
   picture about Ballykildea Mountain (<em>Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé</em>)
Picture: A heathery mound marks the high point
Although some people have described approaches from the south, there seem to be access issues with some of these routes, unless you're willing to cut directly across farmland.
Although an approach from the north is much longer (5km), it avoids these issues as it is mostly through Coillte forestry tracks. One approach is to park at A (R67055 76814), where a farmer has previously had no issue with walkers parking outside his farm building walls. Due to the length of this walk, it is too complex to describe here, so I suggest you follow the track indicated from this parking spot. It is a long walk, but nothing too strenuous and I'd allow 3 hours minimum for ascent & return.

(Also note, the parking spot indicate in sandman's comments below seems to be in error as it is halfway up a sloping field.)
Member Comments for Ballykildea Mountain (Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé)
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   picture about Ballykildea Mountain (<em>Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé</em>)
Picture: Summit Area .
For a quick up and down.
by sandman 18 Mar 2016
Parking adjacent to double farm gates at B (R65456 73163) will allow you a fast and easy route to the summit. Pass thru the gates and continue uphill crossing into another field adjacent to the forestry,keeping to the left hand upper corner will take you into the forestry and on to a well constructed forest road .Go right walk along roadway to turning area at C (R65825 73447) now turn left and follow animal trails up to the open mountain and summit area . Linkback:
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   picture about Ballykildea Mountain (<em>Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé</em>)
Picture: Two possible cupmarks faintly visible on top
Contemplating the distant past
by wicklore 8 Apr 2018
There are many forms of megalithic art hewn into rocks throughout Ireland. Some might be considered functional rather than artwork, and may be maps or represent constellations etc. All come under the general heading Megalithic Art, and can be well over 5000 years old. We are all no doubt familiar with the spirals commonly seen around Newgrange for instance. Some less known forms are called ‘cup marks’ and consist of shallow depressions in rocks. Some cup marks are very simple – just a couple of shallow depressions carved into the rock, while others have elaborate channels and designs around and connecting them. Their purpose is unclear – perhaps a map of the terrain or the skies, perhaps ceremonial, perhaps simply decorative, perhaps the result of a bored shepherd sitting in one place for too long. In Ireland we have about 99 recorded rocks with cup marks. I may have just found the 100th on the slopes of Ballykildea Mountain.

As I descended Ballykildea to the south I came across a large granite boulder in the forest. I felt immediately that there was something about this rock. I wiped the carpet of pine needles off the top and saw that there were two shallow depressions side by side. I also discovered a linear marking along one side. Perhaps the linear marking is the result of some long rotted tree that had grown against the rock. And perhaps the two shallow depressions on top are the result of erosion or a chemical process. Or perhaps not - this appears to be a granite boulder – an erratic – so a tree would be unlikely to have etched into the rock like that, and if the shallow holes are erosion then why only two? It clearly needs further investigation by experts.

Sadly the website and twitter account of Tom Fourwinds (Ian Thompson) appears inactive for several years so I cannot seek the wisdom and knowledge of this formidable amateur expert on Irish megalithic art. The national Irish Monuments Service have requested photos and coordinates for further investigation so let’s see where that leads.

I tried to imagine what this area was like 5000 years ago when this potential megalithic art was made. With no recorded cup marked rocks in this area it was hard to see a particular context except that perhaps more of these rocks lie undiscovered on nearby hills, and all join to form a bigger patchwork of connected art. Was this a vast forest in the distant past or an area of tilled and farmed land? Was it part of an important route or a remote ceremonial site? Or was it a convenient seat for a bored farmer who passed the time by doodling on the rock with another rock?

In 5000 years what will hillwalkers see of us on the hills? Will they gaze upon our modern rock art and know that ‘Neary woz here’? Thankfully the summit of Ballykildea has escaped such ‘art’ and remains a peaceful heathery place, with the same fine views that no doubt inspired our ancestors 160 generations ago. Linkback:
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   picture about Ballykildea Mountain (<em>Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé</em>)
Picture: Linear mark or channel on the rock
Potential rock carving
by wicklore 8 Apr 2018
Another view of the erratic on Ballykildea with potential rock art on it. This side shows a linear mark that may be man made or natural. I will send on the coordinates and photos to the National Monuments service of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and will report back on any findings they make.

In a way it is gratifying that Ballykildea isn't overrun with walkers so the rock should remain undisturbed, although Coillte have a forest track nearby. Linkback:
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   picture about Ballykildea Mountain (<em>Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé</em>)
Picture: Ballykildea View.
simon3 on Ballykildea Mountain
by simon3 21 Oct 2009
The views from Ballykildea include the Slieve Bernagh ridge and the continuation of the whole horseshoe to Glennagalliagh. The east end of the ridge, with Moylussa, is shown on the skyline in the picture.

One way of getting to the summit is to start from the Ballycuggaran wood D (R688 760). Work your way around the tracks. Some of these are shown, sort of, on the 1:50k map. There is also a map displayed at the entrance to the park. Google Earth has as of 2009 useful photos of the tracks. You need to get to E (R6583 7434) (whitish widened area on the road in the picture) from where there is a ride south from the road to the heathery uncairned summit dome. If you are also ascending Moylussa, the ride north will take you in the right direction. Linkback:
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   picture about Ballykildea Mountain (<em>Sliabh Bhaile Mhic Giolla Dé</em>)
Picture: Ballykildea from Cragnamurragh.
Keeper Hill keeps a watchful eye
by csd 18 Apr 2010
This shot of Ballykildea Mountain was taken from Cragnamurragh, with the Shannon, Keeper Hill, and the Silvermines brooding on the horizon. Linkback:
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British summit data courtesy:
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