In the north lie Loughs Melvin, close above Donegal Bay, and Gill near Sligo, Lough Gara, draining to the Shannon, and Lough Conn near Ballina (county Mayo), and in the south, the great expanses of Loughs Mask and Corrib, joined by a subterranean channel.
Every variety of form is seen, from steep flat-topped table-mountains as near Loughs Neagh and Erne, to peaks such as those of the Twelve Pins or Bens of Connemara.
On the west the rivers are generally short and torrential, excepting the Erne, which drains the two beautiful loughs of that name in county Fermanagh, and the Shannon, the chief river of Ireland, which, rising in a mountain spring in county Cavan, follows a bow-shaped course to the south and south-west, and draws off the major part of the waters of the plain by tributaries from the east.
The lakes (called loughs - pronounced lochs) of Ireland are innumerable, and (apart from their formation) are almost all contained in two great regions.
Abounds in loughs - dark, peat-stained pools with low shores.