Lough na Suil water level so high road has to be closed

A lake in east County Sligo has now risen so high it has flooded a nearby road that has had to be closed for safety reasons.

It’s Lough na Suil – the lake of the eye – between Geevagh and Riverstown in the townland of Ballinphuill.

Sligo County Council says the area near the lake has been prone to flooding in wintertime but dries up in summertime, with the water flowing into an underground water system.

The lake itself is thought to drain through a hole in the centre of its basin; the lake has no stream or overground discharge from it.

It’s believed an underground swallow hole that takes water from the lake is now blocked, causing the
lake to rise to road level.

Sligo County Council says the road is now closed to traffic at present as a safety measure.

The lake is called Lough na Suil because it supposedly marks the spot where, more than 3,000 years ago, the Battle of Moytura between the Tuatha de Danann and the Formorians occurred.

Legend says that the eye of the Formorian leader, Balor of the Evil Eye, fell on the ground there after it was popped out of his eye socket with a shot from a sling.

In the past, the lake has made headlines – not for flooding but for actually disappearing, with its waters draining down its centre plughole.

Such an event occurred in 1833, 1933, 1965 and 1985.

The reason for its disappearance has never been fully explained but some theories argue that underground caverns, complex hydrology and unusual climatic conditions are all contributing factors in explaining this unusual phenomenon.

Now however, rather than disappearing, the water in the lake has overflowed and onto the nearby road, causing disruption for some in the local community.