|Buzzards, butterflies and bovine bother
I visited Lacra on a glorious August Saturday, battling through the holiday
traffic to find myself completely alone on a sun-drenched hillside.
Although there is a footpath leading straight up from Kirksanton, I took Burl`s advice and parked at Po House, taking the longer but more gentle path around Lacra Bank. On my journey, I heard the characteristic `mewing` of a buzzard and, looking up, saw this magnificent bird perched high above me. On reaching a ruined farmhouse, I could see an area of stones beyond the drystone walls of the fields and knew that I`d arrived.
Lacra A was the first of the features up here that I encountered. It was difficult to see which stones belonged and which didn`t. Only two remain standing out of six of those that count.
Walking east, Lacra D was the next that I investigated and, here again, I had to study the stones scattered about to try and work out where the circle actually was. I was helped in this by a large slab which lies within the circle, possibly a capstone. From Lacra D, two stone rows are said to run, one to the north-east and the other leading south-west down the hillside.
A ring cairn, Lacra E, lies just 8metres to the north-west, but I could only make out three small stones. The many butterflies feeding on the thistles were a welcome distraction to my quest to try and sort out this bronze age landscape.
Walking south-west from Lacra D and passing through a gap in a field wall, Lacra B was my next destination. This one is unmistakeable as a stone circle, although only six stones remain of a suggested eleven. Whilst here, I was pleased to hear again the call of the buzzard and, looking up, saw a large bird of prey circling in the sky with a smaller bird, who answered the buzzard`s call with its own. I admired their encounter as they circled away and down towards the lower ground where the Giant`s Grave standing stones stand majestically, far off in the distance, before continuing on my quest.
Walking downhill to the east, the remaining stones of Lacra C stone circle came quickly into my view. Just three stones now stand in an arc which would probably have been the largest of the the four stone circles up here. Then the cattle arrived. I usually have no problem with farm animals, but these bovine beasts were very numerous and inquisitive and being mindful of the fact that I was alone upon the hillside, decided that I should play safe and leave. On my return journey, I was entertained again by the buzzard, now back on its previous perch, as it called out to me as I returned to the car.
Posted by baza
12th September 2003ce
Edited 13th September 2003ce