The Devil's Glen, County Wicklow - Irish Pictures (1888)

From Irish Pictures Drawn with Pen and Pencil (1888) by Richard Lovett

Chapter II: The Garden of Ireland … continued

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The traveller who has reached Glendalough from Rathdrum will find it pleasant to return by way of Roundwood and the Devil's Glen. The drive to the former is not so interesting as that through the Vale of Clara, but the walk along the great reservoir of the Vartry that supplies Dublin is worth a visit. This reservoir is an artificial lough, with an area of 400 acres, and formed by a huge dam 1,600 feet long, 40 feet wide at the base and 30 at the top. It can supply the metropolis at the rate of 12,000,000 gallons a day. The water travels twenty-four miles through pipes ere it reaches those who use it.

Near to the Vartry reservoir is a road leading to the head of the Devil's Glen. This is a very fine wooded glen about two miles long, through which the Vartry flows. Entering from the upper end, the finest scenery is met first. The glen is closed by abrupt ledges of rock, and over these the river tumbles and roars in a succession of fine falls. Cars are not allowed to drive through, and so those who wish to see the beauties must perforce walk. It is well worth the trouble. Rock scenery is the chief feature of the glen. It was a prominent place in the 1798 rebellion, and was for a time one of the strongholds of the famous Wicklow general, Holt.

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