ice flowing from off to onshore on west coast of Ireland?

This is a recurrent theme. Was there enough nourishment of ice on the shelf such that flow could be directed shorewards? I have come across this a number of times and have wondered.

James raised it recently in an email and with a Colm reply, which i reproduce below;

”On another but related issue, Roland Gehrels was also at the meeting. He interestingly mentioned that years ago, when he was a student in Maine, Harold Borns gave a seminar on ice flow directions in Connemara, suggesting that the striae had been misinterpreted and that the ice was flowing from the shelf onto land. I’ve found an abstract on his website:

Borns H.W., Jr., and Warren, W.P. , 1990, New Evidence for Ice-Flow Directions over Connemara, Ireland (Abst.) Abstract Volume of †Connemara, 1990″ conf., Unin. College, Galway, Ireland.

This may well be a load of bollocks but I thought it might be worth mentioning. I’d be interested in Colm’s response to this.



Hi James,
Pretty grey literature this as the conference that the abstract relates to is not properly listed! I have had a quick search but did not find it. I see Willie Warren is the co-author. I remember being at the Drumlin Symposium in Coleraine in 1992 and Willie giving a talk which mentioned this idea of ice flow out of clew bay and on shore – so that may be what the abstract is referring to. It did not go down well with the audience as I remember although admittedely it is a long time ago now. I have seen nothing further to the south of Clew Bay in Connemara or Clare that shows ice flow onshore but of course that is not to say it is not possible.

I just went trawling through Sarah Greenwood’s thesis and found some more support by Warren and also by Jordan. see below (Sarah maybe you want to comment some more, I seem to remember us puzzling over some flow sets?);
”Warren’s reprisal (1992; Warren and Ashley, 1994) of Close’s ice sheet model (Figure 2.1c)
goes further than simply suggesting Connemara was a primary ice centre, but rather depicts an
extensive Connemara ice divide stretching from the Slieve Aughtys, across Connemara, Clew
Bay and into the Nephin Beg range in North Mayo. Under this model, Warren describes
onshore ice movement through Clew Bay, an idea which has received some limited support
from Jordan (2002).” p13-14

This keeps coming up and if I add it to Sara Benneti’s comments about glacial evidence way out on the Porcubine sea bight, it all sounds rather interesting. I think we should keep an open mind and also take some active looking


1 thought on “ice flowing from off to onshore on west coast of Ireland?

  1. Malcolm

    James raised the subject of ice flowing from off to onshore on west coast of Ireland in an earlier contribution to this blog. I have long been attracted by this possibility, taking account of striae, a crag and tail feature and drumlin orientation in the Ardara area of South Donegal.



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