Fionn Mac Cumhal's stone, or the Split Rock of Easkey. The stone can be found in the field directly across the road from Easkey National School.
Fionn's Stone is a large boulder in a field near Easky, said to have been cast here by Fionn Mac Cumhal from the Ox Mountains during a giantish stone throwing competition. Angered that his throw did not reach the sea, he struck the stone with his sword and split it, hence it's other name, the Split Rock. Local tradition says that if you walk through the crack three times, it will snap shut on you! The rock is a large piece of gneiss, 6 meters long by 2.5 meters high, that was probably carried north from the Ox Mountains by the retreating glaciers at the end of the last ice age.
The Easkey river valley has a large number of megalithic remains on the northern slopes of the Ox Mountains. Many of these court cairns and dolmens are known as griddles, or giants griddles, and all are, associated with Fionn and the Fianna - probably their cooking sites. There are four large dolmens in the same rough area of bog near the upper Easkey river.
Fionn Mac Cumhal's Griddle.
Below is the Giant's Griddle, a fine dolmen at Tawnatruffan up the Easkey River. This is one of the most graceful of the Irish dolmens, with it's beautiful, soaring capstone. It was sketched by William Wakeman on his tour of the monuments of County Sligo. There is said to be a horseshoe-shaped engraving on stone near the dolmen. The chamber stone is missing from the west side, but apart from that this megalith is well preserved and worth a visit.
William Wakeman's illustration of the Giant's Griddle, from the 1870's.