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

Scotsburn Wood East



Despite entering Scotsburn Wood to the south-west.... this is the first of the immediate area's trio of obvious (or perhaps not so obvious) great cairns that I end up visiting, if only by default. Yeah, having summarily failed to locate the western monument at the first time of asking, a distant glimpse of stone shining through trees above and to the north of the main west/east forestry track ensures there will be no such issues finding the eastern cairn.

Standing within a clearing upon the southern flank of Beinn an Lochain the cairn, according to the wondrous A S Henshall [1972], "...has been c.50' in diameter and the remains are 3' to 4' high." It is most certainly 'chambered', too, although I found it difficult to discern any coherent detail from a series of orthostats remaining in situ within the surviving stone pile.... aside from the odd capstone. Or two. Again according to Henshall... "the passage is 10'6" long and the chamber entrance 1'9" wide, The chamber, c.14'6" long, has two compartments divided by a pair of transverse slabs with an entry between them". So, all in all this is a pretty decent, substantial monument, if lacking the wildly overgrown vibe of its western neighbour. In fact it might be suggested that the pair complement each other perfectly. Like Manic Street Preachers and Nina Persson, perhaps?

Speaking of vibe... that experienced today in this isolated forestry clearing is unfortunately not all that I would have wished due to tannoy announcements emanating from a gymkhana being held down in the valley. However since this is a local event, for local people, the annoyance is limited and most probably not justified. Whatever, my indignation soon more or less dissipates and I enjoy my time in the company of the great cairn. [Interestingly, I later discover that Strathspey was in attendance at said event.... small world, is it not?]

So please come to Scotsburn Wood. If - unlike myself - you manage to locate the western monument beforehand... head north until you bisect a major forestry track. Veer to the right (approx east) along this for a short distance, keeping eyes a'peeled for a hint of path ascending the hillside to your left (north). This should (ahem) lead you to the wondrous megalithic oasis within the trees. Or something like that.
31st August 2013ce
Edited 31st August 2013ce

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