A view of the Glendalough valley taken from near the top of the Glenealo river valley. The spectacular Spink walk is high up on the right of the larger of the two lakes known as the Upper Lake.
Still waters run deep. The upper lake is fed by many mountain streams including the Glenalo river from the waterfall. Along the Northern shore runs the Miners road, a stunning walk from the Car Park to the Miners Village flanked with Scots pine trees.
The Lake at Dusk
Looking West up the length of the upper Lake as the sun is setting can provide photographers with spectacular shots.
Lost in the Woods
It is not that easy to get lost in Glendalough as many of the paths converge into one another. But as the area is so vast, you might sometimes feel like the only one here in the midst of all this beauty. This late autumn shot is taken on the link path which joins the green road to the top of the Poulanass waterfall. As it winds its way up the steep hill you can hear the waterfall cascade down through the ravines it has cut into the softer Schist rock formations on its way into the Upper lake.
The Path to Peace
Beauty awaits at every step.
Perched on the side of a steep hill and facing south, it is a great place to sit and soak up the sunshine amid the flower beds at Tearmann in late summer bloom.
Tearmann from the car park
The steps that lead from the Car Park are flanked with shrubs of all kinds. Different times of the year bring different treats from the abundant ox Eye Daisies to Gooseberries. If you need help with the Bags. Just ask!
Because of the diversity of planting on the steep slopes which face South, there is always an abundance of wildlife to be observed up close. Including Sika Deer, Red Squirrels, Butterflies and many small birds. If you are lucky you might see our local Great Spotted Woodpecker. If not, you will certainly hear him.
Clara Vale above the Fog
The next valley less than 3 km along the road towards Rathdrum is called Clara Vale. It contains mature Oak forest walks and is accompanied along its length by the beautiful Avonmore River Regardless of the time of year it too is a spectacular place to walk in Nature. This photo is taken above the valley on the way to Glenmalure.
Upper Lake Duck Swim
Early mornings offer the quietest times for photography and the results will turn out spectacular regardless of what camera you have. This location offers itself to the painter photographer or writer and cries out to be remembered when you return home.
South through Trinity Window
Trinity Church is only a few minutes walk from Tearmann built in the 11th Century. Perhaps the splayed windows prevented the congregation from gazing out to the beauty beyond on Derrymore’s mountain slopes. It would have certainly been easier to keep warm too!
The upper lake has many moods. According to the temperature of the surrounding mountains, with the water in this deep lake and the days weather, the valley dresses accordingly. Never to disappoint the onlooker. This shot was taken in December.
Perspectives on the Upper Lake
The focus of this shot is indicative of the 2020/21 Pandemic. We are reminded that the safe distance for those who stand and gaze on the upper lake is 2 Metres. The lake is up to approximately 200 metres wide and 1500 metres long. Plenty of room for the ducks and other wildlife to be socially distant.
Patchwork Glendasan Valley
The Northern slopes of the Glendasan Valley sweep down to the foothills of this mountain known as Brockagh. The road to Blessington, this was once known as St. Kevin’s Road runs along the slopes as it climbs to the Wicklow Gap. The river Glendasan from which the valley takes its name, begins as a collection of mountain streams, tumbles down a rocky waterfall and grows as it flows past the monastic city on its way to join the Avonmore River the slopes of Brockagh change with every season as does the pristine river.
Old Wynne Hydro Weir
This is a beautiful location on the Glendassan river. The weir was built by an enterprising local family to provide power for their home adjacent and eventually to the village before the Mains Network arrived. They are also known as the founders of Avoca Weavers. The pool that is retained by the weir is often an attractive place for visitors and locals to swim. The sound of the water as it cascades over the weir is captivating.
The Miners Road along the Upper Lakeshore
Mature Scots pine trees populate the foothills of Camaderry mountain as you walk along what used to be an access to the now abandoned Lead and Zinc mines further up the valley. The light changes here with every footstep. You will see Red Squirrels play in the trees and keep the Upper lake shore company for about 1.5 Km.
Mist through the Trees
This shot is of the trees on Camaderry adjacent to the Lower Lake. The clouds sometimes begin in those trees as they breathe into the cold atmosphere of winter.
Lower Lake in the Rain
Even on a wet day there is beauty everywhere around you. Leaving the Monastic City and walking along the Green road you will pass the lower lake. There are several places to sit and soak in the views, or to get right down to the waters edge for a photo. Sometimes the lake is like a mirror and the raindrops dance on the surface as they try to play with the reflections.
Miners Cottage on St. Kevin’s Road
Right at the top of the Glendassan waterfall where St.Kevin’s Road meets the Wicklow Gap stands and abandoned ruin of a cottage. Given the location it was probably one of the owners/manager’s houses. The views out any window of this home would have been spectacular. Captured in the rising winter sun the shadows hint to the past whilst the bright sunlight opens the onlooker’s eyes to the possibilities from being in this present moment.
Lugduff Brook at the top of Poulanass
Just before the Lugduff Brook tumbles down into the Poulanass gorge to form the waterfall, it joins forces with another unnamed mountain stream. They rumble past the pine trees over and around the huge granite boulders who try to impede their way. It is a place of intense beauty in terms of colour, noise, light and energy.
Lest we forget
The mines in Glendalough from which miners risked their lives to extract lead, zinc and silver have a history dating back to the 1790s. One of those miners who unfortunately lost their lives in an underground explosion months before the mines finally closed in 1957 is remembered on a large piece of granite. His name was James Mernagh Age 24. R.I.P.
Impossibly rooted to this spot
As you walk along the tracks and trails of Glendalough you will see some awe inspiring testaments to the tenacity of nature. Along the Green Road you will find this tree which is well over 100 years old and which has woven its roots around every obstacle that tried to defy its growth.
Green Road Walk
The green road takes you into the heart of the Vale of Glendalough. This walk is a leisurely stroll with great photo opportunities every which way you turn.
The Glenealo Valley Miners Village
Shrouded in a veil of a September morning mist.
Glendasan in Flood
St.Saviours full of December rain almost can’t be contained.