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

Grey Cairns of Camster



Visited 24.7.14

5m north of Lybster on the A9 – sign posted. Historic Scotland site.

The road taking you from the A9 to Camster is a bit like ‘the road to nowhere’.
This is certainly a remote area but, of course, that’s what gives it its charm. It was no surprise that we didn’t pass a single person or vehicle on the way to the cairns.

The grey stones of the cairns stand out against the green grass and their bulk is easily seen from the road (on the left) – you would have trouble not spotting them!

Upon parking Sophie and Dafydd excitedly put on their head lights and we walked out across the wooden board walk towards the first cairn – the one on the left. When we arrived at the cairn the metal gate at the entrance was closed but thankfully not locked. Sophie insisted on taking the lead and Dafydd followed her. I took up the rear. Although the children found no trouble in accessing the chamber I found ‘waddling’ a bit of a struggle – I must be getting old!

We then continued along the boardwalk to the larger cairn which has two low and narrow entrance passages. This is the cairn which also has the reconstructed horned forecourt – which is rather splendid. I must admit that I also found it far from easy ‘waddling’ along these passages but with Sophie’s ‘help’ I eventually managed it. It would probably have been much easier to have simply crawled along the passage ways but that would have been a rather muddy experience!

As with all intact burial chambers (and caves for that matter) once inside and sat in quiet isolation the place takes on a ‘timeless’ characteristic. Time seems to stop.

These are cracking site to visit and comes highly recommended. The highest compliment I can give the cairns is that it wouldn’t look out of place in Orkney.

This is a ‘must see’ if you find yourself in the far north east of Scotland.
Posted by CARL
20th August 2014ce

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