An old castle on an island in the forest, not far from Bealtaine Cottage, and where I walked today with my daughter, Cara, whose birthday we celebrated, with a walk through this magical landscape on a glorious autumn day.
This is Lough Key and the castle once belonged to the MacDermott clan who lived here hundreds of years ago.
The castle is mentioned frequently in the ancient annals, being a focus for both fighting and partying.
Brian of the Carrick, Chief 1585-92, is reported to be last head of the clan to live on the island.
During this time the park was called Moylurg and the Kings of Moylurg were the MacDermotts.
Just resting against this tree made me feel joyous…what amazing energy and strength emanates forth from trees like this!
The mighty Oak has had importance and great significance to the Celts, from ancient to modern times.
This is where the ancestors worshipped and held important events in the old calendar, for the Oak Grove was considered sacred.
The Druids made their magic wands from only three woods…Yew, Oak and Apple.
As the sap begins to drop in the trees and the leaves turn colour, Ivy, that has previously been shaded out by canopy, emerges into its own, as a permanent reminder to us all that spring will return.
The evergreen girdle of Ivy, on many trees, keeps a host of small birds and insects warm and fed over the dark days of winter.
Similarly, the girdle of Moss, around the base of the mighty Oak, will secure the winter for many small creatures.