Loughcrew Cairn L - Sunrise Alignment

The Cairn T sunrise alignment at the Equinoxes on Carnbane East is well known, the Cross Quarter alignment (Samhain and Imbolc) in Cairn L on Carnbane West is less well known. Cairn T on Carnbane East is open to the public but Cairn L on Carnbane West is on private land and is not accessible.

At Samhain (early November) and Imbolc (early February) the sunrise illuminates the passage and chamber of Cairn L, lighting up the limestone standing stone in the cairn. The following series of photographs are by John Willmott of CelticWays.com

Loughcrew November 2005
Before sunrise at Loughcrew on November 6th 2005.

Sun rising over Carrigbrack
Sun rising over the neighbouring Carrigbrack hill.

First sunbeam inside Cairn L
First sunbeam inside Loughcrew Cairn L.


Sunbeam on the Limestone Standing Stone inside Loughcrew Cairn L.


 Full Sunbeam on the Limestone Standing Stone.

Limestone Standing Stone.
Full Sunbeam on the Limestone Standing Stone.

Full Sunbeam on the Limestone Standing Stone
Full Sunbeam on the Limestone Standing Stone.

Cairn L, bathed in Samhain sunlight
Entrance to Loughcrew Cairn L, bathed in Samhain sunlight.

Cairn L plan
Plan of Cairn L showing the Standing Stone - Adapted from Loughcrew The Cairns a Guide

Boyne Valley Private Day Tours

Boyne Valley Tours Pick up and return to your accommodation or cruise ship. Suggested day tour: Newgrange World Heritage site, 10th century High Crosses at Monasterboice, Hill of Tara the seat of the High Kings of Ireland and the Hill of Slane where St. Patrick let a Paschal fire in 433  More ...