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Aherlow & Athassel

August 2, 2007

corey says…Today, Liam’s cousin Bridget and her boyfriend Sean came up from Waterford to visit. The two of them have shown us some fantastic sites in County Waterford, and it was our turn to return the favor.

We started out with a trip to the Glen of Aherlow. Although the day started with heavy rain, the skies had cleared, and we had a perfect day for sightseeing. At the bottom of the Glen, we stopped in at Saint Bernihardt’s Well. This is a little-known, hart-to-find Holy Well that is in a magical spot.

We climbed the style and walked across the field to the kyle. It is said that kyles were originally burial grounds for children…then when they were Christianized they became burial sites for unbaptized children.

This kyle is especially unique because hundreds of carved stones have been brought to the site and set in the circular kyle (most kyles are just a small circle of stones). This has created a wall that reaches nearly four feet in many spots.

It is still a sacred spot, as many people still leave tokens of their prayers and pieces of cloth tied to the tree. It’s really an amazing spot.

We continued down the path to the Holy Well. There is no grotto here…it’s simply a natural spring. You can see the water bubbling up, and there are more prayer tokens left here. This is one of those quiet, reflective places that can take your breath away.

Athassel Priory, Dinner & Step
It was then off to Athassel Priory in Golden. This is one of those big ruins that are great fun to wander around. There are lots of rooms and levels and it’s a very interesting, but seldom-visited site.

We then headed back to Liam’s where we had Bridget’s favorite meal…carbonara. After dinner, we went to the Step viewing area near Silvermines. The sun was just perfect and the views of Lough Derg, Nenagh and the entire valley were just amazing. We continued over the Silvermines Mountains to Tony’s.

When we returned to Liam’s, Liza was there to greet us. We had a nice visit, but Liza needed to get to Tony’s to get a string on her fiddle fixed before she went off to a session tonight.

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