Corrib Connect



 Riverine/Lacustrine archaeology

Waterways have always been heavily utilised as a means of transporting people and goods throughout regions. Lough Corrib, by all accounts has been used by people for hundreds of years.

Artefacts have been discovered buried in the banks and in the bed of the lake which indicate the types of weapons and modes of transit that people have used down through the ages. Ancient swords and dug-out canoes are the most noteworthy of these finds (Semple, 1988).

In 2013 ancient artefacts (including the Annaghkeen log boat) dating back 4,500 years ago were discovered along with 3 viking-style battle axes. They were discovered by Capt. Trevor Northage whilst updating British Admiralty Charts and were subsequently uncovered by the Underwater Archaeology Unit (UAU) of the National Monuments Service (see ‘relevant links’).

Oaken canoe artefacts

Several oaken canoes have been discovered along the Corrib waterway. Maurice Semple (1988) documents the discovery of " a very decorated and large dug-out canoe" that he states was found "opposite the red gridiron mark at the bend of the River, above Menlo Castle, and on the west bank". Due to the difficulty in preserving the canoe, no attempt at lifting it was made (Semple, 1988).

Other similar canoes were found "at the shore of Muckrish, near Annaghdown, and at Lime Island" (Semple, 1988).

An article about a 4,500 year old Annaghkeen log boat discovered in Lough Corrib can be viewed by clicking on a link to an Irish Times newspaper online article under ‘relevant links’. There are no plans yet to ressurect the boat.

According to Wilde (1867) pg. 286 a long single-piece oaken canoe, found in a bay of L. Corrib near Aughnanure Castle, was presented to the museum of the Royal Irish Academy by Dr. R. Willis of Oughterard.


According to a report by a Professor E. Rynne of the National University of Ireland, Galway, contained in Maurice Semple's book (1988), 10 iron swords, 6 of which were classified as military weapons and four were deemed to be for civilian use. Evidence of the Celtic period was found in the form of a La Tene type sword which was discovered "between The Tail of The Wood and Jordan's Island in the townland of Dangan Lower".

Ancient Dwellings

It is thought that the Riverford people lived at the Tail of The Wood (the beginning of Menlo Wood) since evidence of wattle construction and large quantities of sea shells were discovered there, implying that they probably lived in crannógs (Semple, 1988).

Semple, Maurice (1988). Where the River Corrib Flows".

Wilde, Sir William (1867). Wilde's Lough Corrib.

Victorian Yacht Wreck

Sonar imagery was responsible for detecting a pleasure boat Yacht in Lough Corrib, off Oughterard. This type of craft dates to between the late 1800's and the early 1900's. The wreck is now protected and a licence is required to dive it. To see more on the finding of this yacht, with pictures and a video, go to ‘relevant links’ (Source; AnglingCharts.com website).