Geology & Science, or Big-Mouth Giants?

At the tip top of Northern Ireland, central to the coast of Antrim, is the Giant’s Causeway. You will find this geographic sorcery in the city of Bushmills, UK and it is about an hour’s drive from Belfast.

Local lore spins the tale of an Irish giant named Finn McCool that picked a fight with a Scottish giant he had heard of named Benandonner.

Finn built a causeway stretching across the sea to Scotland, running his mouth the entire time. When he finally caught a glimpse of the massive Benandonner, he ran home to his wife.


Finn’s wife Oona is the real legend here. When her pompous idiot of a husband shoved MOSS in his ears and ran to her crying for help, she thought fast.

Oona wrapped Finn up in swaddling crib clothes like the true man-child he was and when Benandonner came thundering across the causeway to fight Finn, she convinced him that Finn was really her baby.

Benandonner fled in fear, imaging how large Finn must be if the baby was already such a giant, but Finn gets all the credit for saving Ireland and has bars named after him all around the world.


The Case for Geology
Giant’s Causeway was named a World Heritage Site back in 1986, the same year the Visitor Center opened, and it is one of top four greatest natural wonders of the United Kingdom


Large stones, shoe-shaped boulders, and other curious structures scattered across the beach and in the water are said to be the remnants of this near battle.


During the Paleocene Epoch, the area now known as Antrim in Northern Ireland had loads of volcanic activity and frequent eruptions of basalt lava.


As the lava cooled over the land, which was largely filled with chalk, it left hexagon-shaped cracks that went downward into the soil and later resembled a honeycomb.


From the visitors center, take a 15-20 minute leisurely walk through the hills before you reach the rocky beach and the famous hexagonal basalt pillars.


Some of these “honeycomb” columns are nearly 40 feet  high and there are around 40,000 of them. Bases of the columns are below water and the tops form a trippy sort of tile floor you can climb across.


Surrounding cliffs have large sheets of solid lava in them, some almost 100 feet thick.


Here are two clips I recorded:

Research here has been ongoing for many years to determine the exact scientific and natural processes that created this world wonder, but if you ask a local, it was Finn McCool.

In the area for a while? Follow me to Northern Ireland and the Real Westeros.

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One thought on “Geology & Science, or Big-Mouth Giants?

  1. Pingback: Northern Ireland and the Real Westeros | Fernweh

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