The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Latest Posts — Fieldnotes

Showing 1-25 of 17,258 fieldnotes. Most recent first | Next 25

Foel Frech (Round Cairn)

About half a mile south of Cerrigydrudion - yes, the village immortalized (in certain antiquarian circles, anyway) by Mr Cope back in 2007 - the B4501 leaves Thomas Telford's A5 to immediately cross the Afon Ceirw at Pont Moelfre, prior to cutting across the hills to Frongoch. Now, should the latter also sound familiar.... well, to be fair, it should. Since it was here that Michael Collins, among others, was interned in the aftermath of the farcically inept Easter Rising of 1916, no doubt busy laying the foundations of his public - albeit ultimately personally tragic - triumph of the Anglo-Irish Treaty of 1921. The landscape here certainly echoes such lofty ideals and I'm verily captivated by the vivid colour contrast as the low early morning light periodically illuminates the flanks of the valley. Suffice to say the words to further elucidate such natural beauty will not come to me.

So, there's serious history in them thar hills. However, as momentous as that may be, today I'm wearing my 'prehistoric hat'; and boy, does it need a wash. Speaking of which.... more later. Anyway, eventually a single track road at Nant-y-crytiau ventures northward across Cadair Benllyn, subsequently veering westward upon encountering a multi-gated cross roads beside an old chapel yo eventually terminate at the isolated farm of Blaen-y-cwm. As I negotiate the final livestock barrier I have the pleasure of making the acquaintance of, by all accounts, the smallholder, his initial countenance one of bemused bafflement at my very presence. He enquires whether I speak Welsh, presumably since, clearly, no tourist would venture here in a million years? Or so. As it happens I do not. Although, in mitigation, most Welsh people I know do not speak Welsh either. Including members of my family. Nevertheless my explanation, to the effect of planning to go for a walk in the teeming rain to find an ancient burial cairn, strikes him as perfectly rational behaviour for an English gentleman. As long as I fasten the gate behind me, mind. Well, after all, one doesn't get much opportunity to venture forth in the midday sun. In North Wales.

At Blaen-y-cwm a green track-cum-bridleway makes it way in a south-westerly direction, ascending across the eastern flanks of Foel Frech to a gated bwlch (col). The track veers approx north-west to (eventually) meet a metalled road accessing the former Medieval pilgrimage hub of Ysbyty Ifan astride the Afon Conwy; however, not requiring sanctuary at this time, I instead cut across the western aspect of Foel Frech to (eventually) locate the Bronze Age cairn marked upon the map. Sited overlooking the Nant Llan-gwrach a quite considerable distance below and to to the north-west of the summit, the monument occupies - or at least did at the time of the visit - a position that may be plausibly described as, er, 'rather wet indeed'. To be honest this was always going to be the case given both the topography... and fast moving fronts of vicious, driving hail.

Now there are occasions when venturing out in seriously inclement weather - particularly upon the hills - can result in a veritable working over by Mother Nature for no real correspondingly tangible reward. Tell me about it. However it soon becomes apparent that here, set within the not insubstantial remnants of this cairn, we have the clear and rather copious remains of a large cist still extant. Furthermore, the intervals between hail fronts are denoted by the sweeping washes of golden light so prevalent earlier in the day. In such conditions, despite leaky boots overwhelmed by the sheer deluge of frozen precipitation ejected by the looming, at times overwhelming, cumulonimbus, this wild hill side is the place to be right here, right now. Well, for a Citizen Cairn'd, anyway.

Those interested in the technical detail should note that Coflein reckons the monument is:

"...circular in plan and measures approximately 6.5m in diameter by up to 0.4m high. It is well constructed with densely-packed stones and has a cist in the centre. The cist measures 1.4m long by 1m wide and 0.4m deep. It has a long vertical cist slab running along the southern side and a shorter slab on the eastern side. There is a further shorter slab that has been displaced and is sat on the northern edge of the cairn... " [P.J. Schofield, OA North, 16/9/2009].

As is usually the case, however, it is the landscape context which makes a visit here so worthwhile, the cairn's obscurity assuring a great, windswept upland vibe. However it is as a viewpoint that the site really excels since, arranged in serried rank to the west, sit the mountains of Northern Snowdonia in all their expansive glory, Moel Siabod standing vanguard to the fore. Well, at least in the welcome, brilliantly lit intermissions between hail storms, that is.

Now should there be, due to some currently unfathomable breech of the laws of physics and everything science holds dear, mountain gods inhabiting these regions, suffice to say they are a bunch of mischievous, nebulous rogues, so they are. Well, put it this way: I've lost count of the number of times when, a mere few hundred yards from reaching the sanctuary of the car nice n'dry... the heavens duly open. Hey, it's almost as if....
GLADMAN Posted by GLADMAN
8th December 2018ce
Edited 9th December 2018ce

Cradle Stone (Rocking Stone)

Visited 01.12.18

I was staying in Crieff for a few (rainy) days so I visited the Knock of Crieff. The Cradle Stone is around 250 yards up the Knock Walk from the Lower Car Park, then 100 yards into the woods on the R. The OS Grid Reference is spot on. It is adjacent to a smaller boulder, also cleft in half, curiously.

There is a local belief that placing a coin in a crack in the Cradle Stone will make a wish come true. I invested 5p but I'm still waiting...
Posted by markj99
3rd December 2018ce

Foel Ystrodur Fawr (Round Cairn)

Motorists travelling south upon the A470 between Trawsfynydd and Dolgellau may well find their gaze irrevocably drawn to the undulating, albeit somewhat serrated, skyline of Y Rhinogydd… prior to Cadair Idris, Snowdonia's last, emphatic hurrah before Pumlumon, seizing centre stage upon the wide screen. As a result none but the most inquisitive - or possibly pedantic? - tourists will consider heading east to penetrate the wild hinterland of the Afon Lliw sandwiched between the near 3,000ft heights of Arenig Fawr and Aran Fawddwy. Only traversed by a gated, single track mountain road, the paucity of traffic here is perhaps understandable, a cursory glance at the map highlighting many apparently more tasty fillings elsewhere. However there is much to be said for adopting a minimalistic approach once in a while, grasping the opportunity to cleanse the landscape palate, so to speak; to get off the beaten track.

Having said that, the start is not overly auspicious: the mock ski-chalet complex of Rhiw Goch suggestive of muppets in shiny new 4x4s enduring 'outdoor experiences' (the former ski centre having apparently now closed down). However all is forgiven when noting this is actually a recycled army training camp. Furthermore the nearby, excellent monolith of Llech Idris (him again) and Sarn Helen/Tomen y Mur stand (if a track can be said to 'stand', that is) mute testimony to the fact that folk have been passing this-a-way for millennia. Anyway... beyond the wooden cabins the minor road follows the course of the Afon Gain to a rather fine little stone bridge before climbing to the summit of Pen y Feidiog, subsequently descending to cross the fledgling Afon Lliw at the farming hamlet of Blaen Lliw.

I feel a sense of everything having a pragmatic reason to exist here... of there being nothing superfluous, nothing but sine qua non. Although, of course, that may well be just middle class fantasy on my part. What is (once again) beyond doubt, however, is the continuity of the human story here, the evidence for which lies above and beyond in the form of two obscure prehistoric cairns. Obscure? Well, neither are indicated upon either the latest 1:50k or 1:25k OS map, so thanks are due to the wondrous people at Coflein. The larger of the pair sits below and to the south east of the summit crags of Foel Ystrodur Fawr and according to CADW "is circular in shape and measures c. 5.5m in diameter. The cairn is shallow and rounded in profile, measuring c. 0.4m tall". [F.Foster/RCAHMW 04.10.2006]. A little to the east of Blaenlliw Isaf farm a livestock gate allows access beyond a drystone wall and proves the key to locating the monument upon its little terrace: once through it is possible to park within an old quarry(?) a short(ish) distance on the left.

Having donned boots and scrambled a little to the north the aforementioned wall will be discerned heading approx north, then, in plain wiry mode, north-east beneath the slightly higher of the rocky Foel Ystrodur twins to the Afon Erwent. Yeah, potential visitors should note that the official bridleway is not much use here, heading eastward. Contrary to my expectations the cairn sits to the north of the fence line; however a helpful stile eases progress in this respect, so no matter the slight faux pas.

OK, the cairn isn't that large, doesn't show signs of a former cist (that I could determine, anyway), nor kerb. In fact not much at all… yet it is immediately apparent that this monument occupies a special place in the landscape. The mighty Arenig Fawr rises, unseen within a mass of opaque vapour, to the immediate north-east, the shapely Moel Llyfnant - to approx north-west - proving a little more obliging by periodically slipping its clammy raiment from the shoulder to reveal a prominent summit (the peak is incidentally well worth an ascent from Blaen Lliw). To the south Dduallt is visible (head for Pont Aber-Geirw and Cwm yr Allt Lwyd for this one), although no doubt The Arans would dominate the horizon in better weather? The silence is absolute, the vibe consequently superb .... so much so that a Citizen Cairn'd can readily absolve the map makers of the oversight, appreciate why the OS passed this one by. Well, c'mon - the local farmer(s) aside - who but a loon 'off-piste' hill bagger would have reason to venture forth upon this wild hillside? Who indeed?

I decide to return to the car in a circuitous manner, via the second of the cairns (at SH81943306) a little to the south-east of the rocky outcrop Bryn Cau. This is a smaller, more ragged affair set upon a saddle just above the road. In other circumstances I might have been inclined to cite it as 'clearance'.... but here, upon this lonely moor devoid of any loose surface stone? I think not! With a superb vista of the Lliw Valley there for the taking just a little to the east, it is abundantly clear that this cairn was specifically sited NOT to overlook the course of the Afon Lliw now flowing toward Llanuwchllyn.

To be fair I have noted other instances of such apparent constructional pedantry elsewhere in the Welsh uplands - e.g the pair of cairns upon the Nantlle Ridge's Y Garn immediately spring to mind - where the act of negating a field of vision has appeared (to me) a conscious decision requiring not a little effort. Perhaps suggestive of local inclusion at the expense of peripheral passers by? Conjecture, of course. But it is a worthwhile exercise to have ventured here to contemplate such things.
GLADMAN Posted by GLADMAN
2nd December 2018ce
Edited 4th December 2018ce

Gelli Ffrydiau (Hillfort)

In my opinion this is an exquisitely sited little hill fort overlooked - nay, completely dominated - by the wondrously sinuous Nantlle Ridge to the south... and the much more elephantine bulk of Mynydd Mawr to the north-east. Needless to say both the latter heights feature their share of formerly interred Bronze Age VIPs, although, as one versed in such matters may suspect, no inkling of cairns can be determined from down here. Indeed, there is more than a hint of Cadair Idris's wondrous Pared-y-Cefn-Hir enclosure in the overwhelming mountain vibe to be experienced at this obscure spot, if not the defensive archaeology, which here is much more compact, more coherent in nature.

The all important water feature, arguably a prerequisite in any classic landscape, is to be found in the Llyn Nantlle Uchaf to approx south-west, the lake perhaps best eulogised - in paint at least - by Richard Wilson in 1765, his focus naturally being upon the grandeur of Snowdon and her cohorts framed by, and rising beyond, the jaws of 'Drws-y-Coed' to the east. One can almost hear the faint reverberations of a mighty 'I don't believe it!' still echoing down across the centuries. Likewise Mr Turner also came here to have a gander. Well, the brusque gentleman did get around a bit, to be fair. And it would've been rude not to pay a visit to such an iconic location in passing.

As it happens, contrary as ever (albeit due to the topography), my eyes are drawn in the opposite direction to those esteemed artists of yore, away from the magnetic pull of Yr Wyddfa-Fawr to gaze across the alternately shimmering/glowering tarn to the 'Three Brothers' perched overlooking the distant Lleyn coastline. Ah, Tre'r Ceiri! The titanic 'Town of Giants' occupying the inner of the far triumvirate. Perhaps Wales' finest hillfort, no less! The small enclosure where I perch riding out a sudden, violent hail storm is no such thing, existing upon a much more unassuming scale; perhaps a temporary citadel for folks living their daily lives below in Dyffryn Nantlle; or maybe just home to an extended family unit not necessarily on their neighbours' Christmas Card list? However I would suggest - recommend, even - that there is 'something' here that warrants a little of your time. Indefinable, perhaps, but none the worse for that. Previously cited as a 'Settlement' upon older OS maps, the substantial nature of the defences for a relatively small site soon convinces this traveller that the current OS denotation of 'Fort' is much more representative. As for Coflein, they have this to say:

"A sub-circular defended hill-top enclosure that measures approximately 30m in diameter. It is defined by drystone walls/banks that comprise of medium to large unworked stones that have been built into irregular courses that measure 2m wide and 0.50m high." [P.J. Schofield, Oxford Archaeology North, 3/2/2006.]

So... motorists venturing through Drws-y-Coed and traversing Dyffryn Nantlle, perhaps intent upon visiting the seaside, will be none the wiser regarding what lies above, such is the obscurity of the 'fort. I eventually parked up opposite the eponymous farm buildings and made my way to the defended crag via a walled track a little to the east. Very steeply. Presumably the former inhabitants actually knew what they were doing and there exists a better way?
GLADMAN Posted by GLADMAN
24th November 2018ce

Ardilistry (Stone Circle)

Continuing south from Kildalton it was time to look for Ardilistry Stone Circle. Like Merrick says the stones are tiny and difficult it find. Finding the stones was easier than the nightmare getting to them.

I parked to the west of the stones in a very large passing place and spied what looked like a path heading east. Also taking note of Merricks advice I put on wellingtons. Sadly the so called path led straight to ditch which I promptly stood in with water going above my knees. Undaunted I headed east to the small rise on which the stones are housed.

The stones are small, tallest is 0.5m and one of them, the west, has been damaged. It is an attractive site, it has an atmosphere, it is odd and I loved it despite the squelchy sound coming from watery feet.

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
21st November 2018ce

Creagan Na Ceardaich Moire (Hillfort)

Heading south west from Trudernish we headed towards Kildalton Church and a surprise bonus when I saw the fort marked on the OS map.

From the church car park look north and fort can be seen on a small hill in the middle of a boggy field. A gate directly opposite the car park makes access very easy.

Access to fort is from the south west between some massive boulders, the main entrance being to the north east with a gap in the rocks being almost 2m wide. A lot of stones can be seen at the bottom of the hill suggesting that the wall has fallen or pushed (to make nearby dry stane dykes). It is roughly a rectangle in shape being 38m by 22m. Good all round views but not really the best defensive place I've ever seen. Anyhow enough time to look at the nearby church before heading further south.

A fine place.

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
21st November 2018ce

Trudernish (Standing Stone / Menhir)

Heading back south from the fort at Dun An Rudha Bhuide, Trudernish Standing Stone is to the east of the road. I pulled in just to the south next to a wood, jumped the gate and headed back north.

The local residents i.e. the sheep seemed quite content to escort me the short distance to the stone. Very impressive it is, standing at 2m tall. There are no markings on the stone which has clear sight of the fort to the south east. The fort will have to wait another day for my feet to reach there.

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
21st November 2018ce

Machermore (Barrow / Cairn Cemetery)

Visited 12.11.18
My previous attempts at clearing up the Machermore mystery were thwarted by the presence of a bull in the wrong field. Third time lucky, armed with Canmore data I visited the remaining cairns. There are a lot of clearance cairns in this area to confuse the picture. After careful analysis of Canmore sites I have come to the following conclusions:
Canmore searches for Machermore are not relevant as they are all discredited or clearance cairns.
Canmore searches for Culroy have produced several clearance cairns, three ruined cairns and two well preserved cairns.

1) Canmore ID 62210 See White Cairn, Culroy
2) Canmore ID 62231 See Culroy Farm Cairn
3) Canmore ID 62231 A dilapidated cairn covered by whins and some clearance stones
4) Canmore ID 62271 This is the well preserved Barrow listed as Machermore/Culroy
5) Canmore ID 62282 A possible cairn with whins & clearance stones added.
Posted by markj99
19th November 2018ce

Culroy Farm Cairn (Cairn(s))

Culroy Farm Cairn lies around 300 yards N of Culroy Farm. It is a grassy mound around 4 feet high and 60 feet in diameter. There are many scattered rocks on the flattened plateau of the cairn. It is listed as Canmore ID 62231. Posted by markj99
19th November 2018ce

White Cairn, Chapelton (Cairn(s))

Visited 05.11.18

Head for Creetown Gem Rock Museum. Turn R up the hill just before the museum, turn L at the crossroads after 1/4 mile onto a single track road. After 400 yards the Chapelton White Cairn is in the field on the R.

Chapelton White Cairn is somewhat of an ironic name as the cairn is a grassy mound with no visible stone structure except for a large stone on the cairn summit. Canmore ID 63303 makes no mention of this stone so it may have been erected post 1970.

It is an unassuming site, on the way to Glenquicken and Cauldside sites so it is worth a short detour.
Posted by markj99
19th November 2018ce

Cauldside Burn Cairn North (Chambered Cairn)

Visited on 5th Nov 2018

This ruined cairn can be found by parking at Cambret Hill just above the cattle grid on the road to the Cambret Hill mast. Head downhill towards the summit of Cairnharrow opposite. Cauldside Cairn South, a large well preserved cairn will be visible half way up Cairnharrow across the valley. Cross the fence at the bottom of Cambret Hill and line up the summit of Cairnharrow with Cauldside Cairn South. You should see a green area, a reed bank, stand out from the brown moorland around 100 yards straight ahead. The ground is boggy up to the cairn. The ruined cist is surrounded by reeds and an earth bank.
Posted by markj99
19th November 2018ce

Dibden Inclosure (Barrow / Cairn Cemetery)

A single bowl barrow, in woodland and easily found alongside a track. This is only a few minutes from the Dibden Inclosure car park and if you are nearby, you should definitely also visit the Beaulieu Road barrows. UncleRob Posted by UncleRob
18th November 2018ce

Matthiesings Opferstein (Natural Rock Feature)

taken from the information board:

Matthiesing's altar stone

Altar stone from the early Stone Age (3rd millennium BC). According to legend, the devil wanted to hurl this boulder against the Ueffel church and destroy it.

But the devil's power was broken by the crowing of the cock at the neighboring court of Matthiesing at midnight.

The stone then turned on its own axis.
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
13th November 2018ce

Cauldside Burn Stone Setting

Visited 05.11.18

While visiting the Cauldside Burn Cairn North (Canmore ID 63692) I tried to find the Stone Setting. When GPS failed I tried a 30 yards by 30 yards grid search S of the Cauldside Burn Cairn North but found no stones of any size.
I think the pictures already submitted here depict the Cauldside Burn Cairn North and the Cauldside Stone Circle, respectively.
For a more detailed description of the Cauldside Burn Stone Setting see Canmore ID 63682.
Posted by markj99
13th November 2018ce

Karlsteine

taken from the "Route of Megalithic Culture" information board:

Traveling Stones

During the Saalian (Wolstonian) Stage of the Ice Age about 20,000 years ago glaciers transported granite stones from Scandonavia to Northern Germany, which at the time was covered by approx. 400 metres of ice. Climatic warming caused the ice to melt, thus providing the Neolithic people in North-West Germany with their impressive construction material.

Only the Karlsteine do not fit into the pciture: The carbon-quartzite used originates from the neighbouring Piesberg. According to the legend Charlemagne split the capstone in half with his whip which is even more astonishing given that carbon-quartize is one of the toughest stone far and wide.

Within walking distance (approx. 500 metres) to the southwest the "Kreuz im Hone" a cross is commemorating the place where the first Christian mass in the Osnabrück region was said 783 AD. Following Charlemagne's ambitions to convert the Saxons to Christianity.
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
13th November 2018ce

Vehrte 1 (Passage Grave)

taken from the information board:

Devil's oven
Neolithic megalithic grave

On the construction of megalithic tombs
Megalithic tombs are among the buildings of the so-called megalithic culture (from Greek mega = large and lithos = stone). Its essential element is the upright stone (= menhir). Such constructions exist as rows of stones, stone circles, temples and tombs. The best known example is Stonehenge in England.

The North German megalithic sites are almost exclusively grave sites from the Neolithic period, built between 3,500 and 2,800 BC. The core of a site is the ground-level chamber. It consists of individual yokes placed side by side in east-west direction (one yoke = two wall stones and one capstone) and the closing stones on the narrow sides. The floor of the burial chamber was paved with small boulder fragments and stone scree. The large joints between the wall and ceiling stones are filled with dry masonry wall.

The name passage grave, as a name for the type of grave that is common in our country, states that originally a short passage formed of boulders ran towards the middle of the southern longitudinal wall.

The entire stone construction was covered by its builders with a mound. The hill foot was partly framed with still visible oval stoneworks to prevent slippage of the accumulated earth masses.
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
13th November 2018ce

Vehrte 2 (Dolmen / Quoit / Cromlech)

taken from the information board:

Devils dough trough
Neolithic grave site

The builders of the megalithic tombs
In northern Germany, the megalithic tombs belong to the legacy of the so-called funnel beaker culture, named after the typical shape of their pottery. This population began in the Neolithic period from about 3,500 BC. also in our country, to practice agriculture and livestock. With this they finished the oldest and longest period of human history, the time of hunter-gatherer cultures, and introduced the sedentary way of life.

From the study of flower pollen we know today that it was 2-3°C warmer then today. There were large oak mixed forests on whose clear edges, near the stream or river, with stone axes the forest was cleared and fields and settlements were created. The most important crop was cereals, whereby only those species were cultivated, which came in the course of 5,000 years with the spreading of the rural way of life from Near East to Central and Northern Europe. These included the wheat varieties einkorn and wild emmer as well as barley.

The livestock can be retraced from individual bone finds. In the 4th millennium BC after that, cattle and pigs and, also imported from Southeastern Europe, sheep and goats were bred.
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
13th November 2018ce

Haltern (Passage Grave)

taken from the information board:

Megalithic tomb Slopsteine
Neolithic grave site
(3500 - 2800 BC)

The foothills of the Wiehengebirges north of Bissendorf are well into the 18./19. Century a center of graves from the Neolithic and Bronze Age. The map shows this picture also for today's time, however the inventory has decreased by a multiple. The exact number of originally existing sites is no longer detectable today.

The megalithic tombs belong to the Neolithic megalithic culture (Greek: "mega" = large, "lithos" = the stone) and are among the oldest and most impressive proof of human life and work in northern Germany. They date from the 3rd to the 4th millennium BC and still inspire the imagination of the viewer today. The researchers associate them with the Neolithic revolution when the sedentary lifestyle began with the beginnings of agriculture and livestock. Concrete references to the people who built and used these monuments are sparse.
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
13th November 2018ce

Grambergen 1 (Dolmen / Quoit / Cromlech)

taken from the information board:

Megalithic tomb Deitinghausen
Neolithic grave site
(3500 - 2800 BC)

The foothills of the Wiehengebirges north of Bissendorf are well into the 18./19. Century a center of graves from the Neolithic and Bronze Age. The map shows this picture also for today's time, however the inventory has decreased by a multiple. The exact number of originally existing sites is no longer detectable today.

The megalithic tombs belong to the Neolithic megalithic culture (Greek: "mega" = large, "lithos" = the stone) and are among the oldest and most impressive proof of human life and work in northern Germany. They date from the 3rd to the 4th millennium BC and still inspire the imagination of the viewer today. The researchers associate them with the Neolithic revolution when the sedentary lifestyle began with the beginnings of agriculture and livestock. Concrete references to the people who built and used these monuments are sparse.
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
13th November 2018ce

Düwelsteene - Heiden (Passage Grave)

The Düwelsteene (Devil Stones in Low German) are the most south-westerly, in the core area preserved megalithic site of funnel beaker culture, created about 3500-2800 BC and one of the few in Westphalia.

They were already restored in 1932. The northeast-southwest oriented site is 12 m long outside (inside 10.2 m) and 2.7 m to 4.3 m wide (inside 1.5 m to 2.2 m); the inside height is 1.5 m. The now-defunct original chamber floor was covered with a patch of flat field and flint stones. Almost all the supporting stones and three capstones are still preserved, whereas an enclosure is no longer visible today. Access to the chamber is no longer safe to determine.

The megalith tomb can be reached via the Reken exit of the autobahn A31. Here you drive towards Heiden until you reach a roundabout. Turn right (north) until the next roundabout, here first straight ahead over the roundabout and after 290m right into the Düwelsteenweg. Follow this for 1.6 km until you come to an junction. Here you should park and walk the remaining 600m on a sandy, unpaved road on foot.

Visited July 2018
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
12th November 2018ce

Auchindoun (Hillfort)

10/11/2018 – A good old castle in ruins is just great. This one at Auchindoun is well worth a visit. There’s a newish carpark now a short drive up the track from the main road. Location is wonderful with fine views of River Fiddich and surrounding hills. I was really taken aback by the size of the ramparts of the bivallate Iron Age fort, they are huge. The medieval castle in the middle of the fort is really fine as well, it took me back to visits to castles in Wales as a kid. Very exciting.

It was a lovely November day out with a walk in the Cabrach in the morning, then a visit here followed by a pop in to see Nether Dumeath stone circle on the way back. All in the fine company of Drew and co :-)
thelonious Posted by thelonious
12th November 2018ce
Edited 15th November 2018ce

Tannenhausen (Passage Grave)

In a residential area in Tannenhausen, north of Aurich, is the only remaining megalithic tomb, of four former in Friesland. Strictly speaking, the complex consists of two burial chambers, which were connected to each other via a common burial mound. From the western chamber there are only three stones left (two capstones and one supporting stone), popularly called butter, bread and cheese (low german Botter, Brood & Kees). From the eastern chamber was not a single stone available, this was reconstructed with new boulders. The two burial chambers are located in a park-like area, with many information boards, for my taste a bit too much of the good.

To visit the site drive north through Tannenhausen on the Dornumer Straße. Just before the road makes a right turn, turn left into Stürenburgweg. After 250m turn left into Am Hünengrab (what a name ;-) ) and after furthermore 150m turn right into Möhlenkamp. The site is on the left after 140m.

Visited July 2018
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
11th November 2018ce

taken from one of the information boards:

Research of the tomb

This site in Tannenhausen is one of the four known Stone Age megalithic graves in East Frisia. It is the only one from which remnants can still be seen.

The western chamber was about twelve meters long, 2.2 meters to 2.8 meters wide and 1.3 meters in height. It consisted of about 20 large boulders. The east chamber was about 11.2 meters long and 2.2 meters to 3.2 meters wide. Five identical six large capstones formed the roof. Both burial chambers were covered by oval hills. The entrances to the burial chambers were on the south side.


Excavations

Various excavations already took place in 1780 before the founding of the colony Tannenhausen. Regular archaeological investigations were only carried out between 1962 and 1963.

The megalithic tombs date back to the early phase of the so-called Western group (between Drenthe and the Weser) of the funnel beaker culture around 3,500 BC.

The stones to be visited in the area are two capstones and a supporting stone of the western burial chamber. During the excavations the traces of the former other stones could be documented.

The original stones of many megalithic tombs in northern Germany and the Groningen region were smashed, robbed and used for other structures - often probably also for churches.


Tannenhausen findings

The people of the funnel beaker culture were the first in East Frisia to make ceramic vessels. They were richly decorated with geometric patterns. These were carved before the fire in the wet clay and filled with a white paste, which is usually no longer preserved.

The tools still consisted entirely of stone. The ax blades, for example, were made of flint, as well as the arrowheads. As jewelery pearls from rock, but also from amber from the Baltic Sea were used.


The now to be seen site represents a reconstruction! The stones are in the original locations, but they are not the original stones. These have disappeared over time. The reconstruction shows what one of the tombs might have looked like. A stylized entrance allows a view into the inside of the tomb. Even the access from wooden posts can not be reconstructed today, so it is represented by vertical wooden posts.
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
11th November 2018ce

Klein-Berßen 2

The tomb originally had an oval border, but there is no sign of it today. The burial chamber is oriented approximately east-west, its length is 10m, the width is 2.4m in the west and 1.8m in the east. The chamber possessed in her original condition six pairs of support stones on the long sides, one endstone each on the narrow sides and six capstones. Almost all support stones are still in situ, only the western endstone has been removed. All the capstones were blown up. Several large pieces are still inside the chamber.

The tomb is very easy to find. You drive on the L54 from Klein Berßen to Haselünne, after approx. 2,5km you turn right into the street Loherfeld, the tomb lies after another 300m immediately right (north) of the street.

Visited July 2018
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
11th November 2018ce

Westerloh 2 (Passage Grave)

Due to the fact that the tomb is still buried deep and heavily overgrown in the undergrowth, here follows the description from the German Wikipedia:

The 5.0 × 1.5 meter east-west orientated chamber lies deep in the ground. Of the original ten support stones and the four capstones missing one each. Of the entrance stones is only one in situ. One entrance and the capstone of the entrance, which is located in the middle of the south side, are missing. An enclosure or a hill can not be proven.

The tomb lies on private land, drive from Westerloh on the K240 to Lähden. After about 1.7km you come to a junction, where the forest begins on both sides of the road. The road "Zum Herthum" to the north leads to the graves Westerloh 2 and Lähden 2, the dirt road to the south to grave Westerloh 1, which is located in a small wood just outside the forest.

Visited July 2018
Nucleus Posted by Nucleus
11th November 2018ce
Showing 1-25 of 17,258 fieldnotes. Most recent first | Next 25