|Met Tom at my supposed recumbent and flanker. Boy have I a lot to learn. Shots have been deleted now. In my defence I'd say that this whole area is a veritable megalithic quagmire (literally and metaphorically). There are many, many stones that may-be or may-be-not. The whole featherbed ridge from Piperstown, over and down into Cunard and back up to Glassamucky has a mound here, another one over there, this that looks like a standing stone, and that that looks like a fallen standing stone. For an inexperienced stone-hunter like me it's maybe not the best place to start. So, self-justification over, on to the real stuff.
We went to Glassamucky Bullaun stone, my first time seeing one of these. The large indentation on the top of the stone had some rainwater in it. I was tempted to have a drink but thought better of it (I always feel the need to interact with these places in some way: passive viewing and photo-taking feels a bit too touristy to me). Tom pointed out that the two other indentations are on the edge of the back of the stone, blowing my theory that their purpose was to collect water.
In the fierce wind we headed down into the valley to Cunard Portal Tomb.
I'd been down in this direction about a year ago with the dog, wanting to see the small gorge cut through by the Dodder. My memory of it had been that it was extremely boggy and that I had gotten a soaking for my troubles. Well, some things change and some things stay the same. It's now late May and I reckon that this ground rarely, if ever, dries out. So if you're coming here, be prepared. My Doc Martens offered me protection for about the first 100 yards. After that it was saturation, though I still tried to walk on the heather even though it was too late (strange that).
The little, sweet portal tomb of Cunard was a joy. Sitting there in its little clearing above the swiftly moving stream it seemed that the tree beside it was looking over it, protecting it from… what? The sheep? Anyway, we spent about a half hour here and in its vicinity. The capstone reminded me of a whale, with it's large, horizontal split. The chamber is hard to work out. Tom said that some have doubts as to whether this is actually a portal tomb. If you ask me I don't see how it couldn't be.
We had a look around the vicinity. Found a nice piece of gleaming white quartz that had been revealed by the burning of some gorse. It was so polished that Tom said it must have come from the stream at some stage. On the way back up the hill we encounterd some interesting aligned stones. Like I said at the beginning, the whole area is full of ancient stuff.
As a small non-megalithic aside: I was fascinated by the small carnivorous plants that are to be found in abundance around this tomb. What an amazing place! Thanks Tom.
Posted by ryaner
24th May 2006ce
Edited 17th September 2006ce
ryaner's TMA Blog
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