Altdrumman : Portal Tomb

CountyTyrone
Grid RefH 578 769
Longitude7° 6' 17.13" W
Latitude54° 38' 12.81" N
ITM east480366
ITM north584435
Nearest TownOmagh (12.5 Km)
OS Sheet13
UTM zone29U
UTM x449041
UTM y5761192
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Visit Notes

Sunday, 8th June 2003

A little beauty! At first sight the structure immediately brings The Labby Rock (County Sligo) to mind, and not just in structure. The shoebox style capstone is very similar, as are the relatively short portal stones.

There is no door stone here and the chamber walls are missing, which, while detracting from its completeness, actually adds to its architectural elegance.

One of the most striking similarities is its proximity to a large rocky outcrop. At Carrickglass the tomb faces away from and towers over its outcrop, but here the roles are reversed. Amazingly this tomb almost points straight into a huge piece of rock.

The surroundings now could not be any further removed from what the landscape must have looked like when the tomb was constructed. The only anchor must be the rock outcrop. To the southwest is a huge water treatment plant, with some construction work currently underway. Nearby is a desserted farmhouse and yard. The flat fields probably bear little resemblence to the wooded scenes that were probably here 5000 years ago.

Despite all this it is still possible to site by the tomb, perhaps on the outcrop looking down on it, and actually detach yourself from the surroundings. A lovely spot.

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About Coordinates Displayed

This is an explanation of (and a bit of a disclaimer for) the coordinates I provide.

Where a GPS figure is given this is the master for all other coordinates. According to my Garmin these are quite accurate.

Where there is no GPS figure the 6 figure grid reference is master for the others. This may not be very accurate as it could have come from the OS maps and could have been read by eye. Consequently, all other cordinates are going to have inaccuracies.

The calculation of Longitude and Latitude uses an algorithm that is not 100% accurate. The long/lat figures are used as a basis for calculating the UTM & ITM coordinates. Consequently, UTM & ITM coordinates are slightly out.

UTM is a global coordinate system - Universal Transverse Mercator - that is at the core of the GPS system.

ITM is the new coordinate system - Irish Transverse Mercator - that is more accurate and more GPS friendly than the Irish Grid Reference system. This will be used on the next generation of Irish OS maps.

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