|Easily walkable from the village of Laax (albeit uphill), the stone alignments here are also known as the 'Parc La Mutta'. Having heard that there are supposed to be astronomically aligned prehistoric rock carvings, I had to try and check this place out, as such things are like unicorn droppings*.
The claims of astronomical alignments are rather complex and defeated my paltry astro-awareness, so I'll take their accuracy on good faith. The church that's been plonked onto the crest of the hill presumably makes this also a 'Christianised Site'.
I didn't venture into the BA settlement in the trees, having spent too long wandering about in the stygian depths of the trees below, searching for some of the alleged astronomically aligned carvings. I wasn't convinced, but was impressed by the strange vibes from the ridiculously deep fissures in the bedrock. Echos of the underworld.
The carvings are highly suspect in my opinion. The one definite carving is a portable on top of the foundations of the church wall. As such, it's obviously not in situ, and looks like a medieval cross to me. Any claims regarding it's alignment are thus to be taken with a sackful of salt, as it would be very easy to simply turn it around to create the alignment of your choice. The one nearby which is meant to be a crescent and arrow seemed more like natural features to me. The rock is too composite/brecia-like to make for a carvable surface, and there is so much natural texure, it was possible to invent possible motifs with ease. Having said that, the light was quite strong and vertical, so mebbe it needs the right lighting to make the carvings visible. Possibly.
The other carvings are just as suspect, with one seeming to be a discarded millstone roughout. As I didn't get into the trees, I can't vouch for the one that is supposed to have a face, but to be honest, I was so disappointed with the others, I wasn't all that bothered to miss it.
There are a few bits of outcrop that had things that could well be cup marks on them, though these are mostly overlooked by those who promote the astronomical claims. They are recorded as 'Schaelsteinen' by some Swiss Archaeologists though, so I'm hopefully not just imagining cup marks.
Overall, the stones of Falera are interesting nough to merit a visit if you're in the area, it's in a spectacular location, but don't believe the hype would be my reccomendation. Prehistoric? yes. Astronomically aligned? maybe. Astronomically aligned carvings? Meh. Nah. Not really.
* As it turned out, exactly like unicorn droppings, i.e. mythical.
Posted by Hob
10th August 2009ce