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Argyll and Bute (Islands)

<b>Argyll and Bute (Islands)</b>Posted by theloniousBen Feall © thelonious
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Skyscapes and Landscapes in Prehistoric Scotland

Taken from 'Past Horizons'
moss Posted by moss
10th June 2014ce

Latest posts for Argyll and Bute (Islands)

Showing 1-10 of 1,301 posts. Most recent first | Next 10

Ardilistry (Stone Circle) — Fieldnotes

Continuing south from Kildalton it was time to look for Ardilistry Stone Circle. Like Merrick says the stones are tiny and difficult it find. Finding the stones was easier than the nightmare getting to them.

I parked to the west of the stones in a very large passing place and spied what looked like a path heading east. Also taking note of Merricks advice I put on wellingtons. Sadly the so called path led straight to ditch which I promptly stood in with water going above my knees. Undaunted I headed east to the small rise on which the stones are housed.

The stones are small, tallest is 0.5m and one of them, the west, has been damaged. It is an attractive site, it has an atmosphere, it is odd and I loved it despite the squelchy sound coming from watery feet.

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
21st November 2018ce

Creagan Na Ceardaich Moire (Hillfort) — Fieldnotes

Heading south west from Trudernish we headed towards Kildalton Church and a surprise bonus when I saw the fort marked on the OS map.

From the church car park look north and fort can be seen on a small hill in the middle of a boggy field. A gate directly opposite the car park makes access very easy.

Access to fort is from the south west between some massive boulders, the main entrance being to the north east with a gap in the rocks being almost 2m wide. A lot of stones can be seen at the bottom of the hill suggesting that the wall has fallen or pushed (to make nearby dry stane dykes). It is roughly a rectangle in shape being 38m by 22m. Good all round views but not really the best defensive place I've ever seen. Anyhow enough time to look at the nearby church before heading further south.

A fine place.

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
21st November 2018ce

Trudernish (Standing Stone / Menhir) — Fieldnotes

Heading back south from the fort at Dun An Rudha Bhuide, Trudernish Standing Stone is to the east of the road. I pulled in just to the south next to a wood, jumped the gate and headed back north.

The local residents i.e. the sheep seemed quite content to escort me the short distance to the stone. Very impressive it is, standing at 2m tall. There are no markings on the stone which has clear sight of the fort to the south east. The fort will have to wait another day for my feet to reach there.

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
21st November 2018ce

Dun Fhinn (Stone Fort / Dun) — Folklore

The earliest story of Ardtalla stems from the the origins of Gaelic Scotland, featuring the semi-legendary warrior Fionn MacCumhail, (Finn McCool). Earl’s ‘Tales of Islay’ records that the great warrior’s headquarters were in Skye, but he was fond of coming to Islay to relax:
Fionn was said to be the son of an Irish father and a Norse mother. His father’s name was Cumhal and his mother’s Morna. Not only was he a hero in Ireland but his adventures were told in Scotland, especially in the west, and many place names are called after him. If the great Fionn MacCumhail was so fond of Islay and visited it so often, surely there must be some indication somewhere that this was so. At Ardtalla there is Dun Fhinn up in the hills opposite Trudernish. Even from a distance it looks quite imposing. In the same area there is what was once an ideal township, Creag Fhinn, with many interesting features. It is a fascinating place and can be reached after a short climb, though it is not so very easy to find as the old tracks leading to it have disappeared. If only it could come alive again!

Fionn grew up big and strong, good at running, swimming and leaping: in fact he was a real giant, and being the type of person he was, naturally legends grew up round about him. He had a son called Ossian. Fionn was said to have much wisdom, which he got from eating the Salmon of Knowledge, which was given to him by an old man who was fishing nearby. He was called Fionn because he was so fair, and he became the leader of the Fienne, a band of warriors renowned for their bravery and war-like deeds.

At one time the people in Islay were being harassed by the Lochlanners and appealed to Fionn to come to their aid. This Fionn did, and he and his men soon cleared Islay of the invaders. A bloody battle took place on the Big Strand called Lathan a Tunnachan, the Battle of the Staves. The warriors fought with staves or short sharp sticks which they threw at their enemy with great force. They carried supplies of these staves under their arm or in a sort of quiver, as was used to carry arrows. Fionn is said to have died in AD283, which places the battle long before the Norse occupation.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
7th November 2018ce

Dun An Rudha Bhuide (Stone Fort / Dun) — Links


Details of the walls.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
7th November 2018ce

Dun An Rudha Bhuide (Stone Fort / Dun) — Fieldnotes

Go to the end of the A846 at Ardbeg and go straight onto the minor road. Keep going until it ends as it heads north east. Jump over the gate and head north east, climbing slowly. After about a 1/4 mile Dun An Rubha Bhuide will be seen.

This is a tremendous fort with three lines of wall for defence and a natural harbour just to the north. Each wall is over 2m wide and on the outer, a gap which I stumbled through is probably the entrance. Like a lot of forts here, walls have been built to fill in natural defences.

Also there is, like a few other forts I visited, higher ground nearby i.e the direction I came from. So not much protection from the north, hence the walls.

But this is a beautiful place and its the end of the road (tarred).

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
7th November 2018ce

Glac A' Charraigh (Standing Stone / Menhir) — Fieldnotes

The next day dawned and despite it being overcast it was fairly dry. (that, of course, would change) I had always wanted to see the American monument at west point of the Oa peninsula so we walked from Cragabus to the site.

This is near to were the troopship Turcania was torpedoed and another troopship, the Otranto, sank. (1918)

On the way back I had a look for the standing stone at Glac A'Charraigh. Sadly the stone has fallen since its last visitor in 1977. Originally it stood at almost 2m high but now one of the chokes stands guard, a marker, as this would almost be impossible to find.

From west of the site as the road heads north I jumped the fence and headed north east until I luckily spotted the choke stone. To get back to the road head north bypassing the wee hill.

A bleak place on a bleak day. By now the rain had arrived. A drenching was on its way!

Visited 30/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
31st October 2018ce

Sron Dubh (Promontory Fort) — Fieldnotes

The final stop of a glorious day traipsing around Cragabus and Port Ellen concluded at the promontory fort Sron Dubh.

Follow the road south from Druim Nam Madagan until it ends at the A846 and head slightly east towards Port Ellen. A track, a mixture of bog, remnants of bonfires, dry bits and sea shells heads south leading to the fort. By this time night was coming down, a hint of mist, the sea was eerily calm and there was total silence. This is a beautiful place, situated between The Ard (a fort I visited) and Portintruan (another fort to be visited next time). Fine views of Texa, the island to the south east.

With a natural harbour near to the fort and some steep cliffs on the south this seems quite a good place for a fort. However the north isn't very high and is protected by wall which originally was 3m wide. This seems quite common for the south forts.

Where there wasn't a wall nature provided rocks and in the gaps man made defences can be seen. The forts interior is made up of small sections like rooms, similarly were nature didn't fill the space, man did. One space not filled was the entrance and tghis can be found in the north west.

A great first day back in Islay and a contented dram or two coming up.

Visited 29/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
31st October 2018ce

Sruthan Na Cille (Stone Fort / Dun) — Fieldnotes

After a good look round at Druim Nam Madagan we walked a short distance south before heading west, crossing a small burn before encountering thick ferns. I battered my way through to finally approach the dun from the west.

I found the outer wall easily enough by falling flat on my face as I tripped over it. It stands at around 0.5m tall and almost surrounds the crag on which the dun is perched. When I reached the ground I also discovered the wall must have been over 3m wide. However the density of the ferns made judgement hard and underfoot conditions even worse. The east side as well as a wall has the natural defence of a steep cliff.

There is a small wall in the middle of the dun, which I managed to spy before falling over that as well.

Now the dun, to me, seems to be on the wrong hill as there is a higher ridge to the north west so it seems to suggest that this might well be an enclosure, as the OS suggest, or a homestead, as Canmore suggests. I tend to think that it is a dun as it is similar to duns further to the east.

Who's to say that it isn't all three.

Visited 29/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
24th October 2018ce

Druim nam Madagan (Torradale) (Chambered Tomb) — Fieldnotes

From Branhunisary make your back to the road and head east. Go past the water works and take the first road south, by this time the aromas of the three distilleries on the coast should reach your nose. The site, easily spotted by the standing stone, is on the east side of the road.

Only two slabs of the chamber remain, the standing stone and a possible kerb are in their original positions. The remnants of the almost 27m cairn have been reduced to a few bumps of rubble.

Still the other parts of the chamber aren't far away and its easy to see why the site had, originally, a different classification.

The slabs, of the chamber, have been moved to a building a few yards away. Canmore seem confused to what this building had been but having seen a few similar shapes on various isles its a safe bet it was medieval shelter for livestock.

Nice site, nice aroma :-)

Visited 29/7/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
24th October 2018ce
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