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


Standing Stones


Visited 5th February 2013

Access to these stones proved easier than in Moth's old fieldnotes. As you come into Stromness on the main road from Kirkwall take a right at the mini-roundabout onto North End Road, soon, bear right again onto Back Road, which wends its way up the brea at the back of the town. At the next mini-roundabout head right again on the Outertown Road, from which you you soon see a brown signpost directing you to turn left to Warebeth beach. We parked down near the graveyard on the coast, not risking the bumpy narrow road which gives access to the small parking area overlooking the beach.

From here follow the coastal path, and you will soon see the profile of the stones on the horizon. After crossing a small burn the path takes a sharp turn right and heads inland. Just a short ways up this path you will see a lane to your left which leads straight into the field containing the stones. Today (as with my last visit) this heavily rutted lane is full of pools of water, but a handy ridge between the deep tyre ruts acts like a causeway to keep our feet dry.

At the stones, both solid blocks around 4' high, you get great views out over the bay. It is still windy today, but nowhere near the storm force winds of the last couple of days which had shut down the ferries, and from our vantage point at the stones we watch the MV Hamnavoe labour its way through the heavy seas on its crossing to Scrabster.

The sun is out, but on the way up we were pelted by a quick rain/hail storm, such is the capriciousness of the Orcadian weather, and now a rainbow is visible over toward Stromness. As we stand at the stones the raw elemental power of Orkney is tangible, as huge waves break at the beach, and snow is still visible on the high hills of Hoy across the water.

I take a look at the other nearby stone mentioned in the fieldnotes, but again am not sure whether it was ever part of an alignment, somehow it feels more perhaps like an ancient boundary stone. Regardless it's a fine place here, a pleasent walk, wonderful views and a pair of megalithic stones, what more could you ask for!
Ravenfeather Posted by Ravenfeather
10th February 2013ce

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