Unlike any of my previous visits it was mercifully dry overhead and the directions are the same as before to get there. We reached the ruins of the Cairn Mude croft and tried to proceed to the top of Stot Hill. Unfortunately the forestry agriculture machinery had been recently turning the track into mud, deep puddles creating flooding everywhere. By the time both drew and dog reached the summit they were covered in mud/stench/trees and in my case soaked from almost falling in.
From the cairn we headed directly north along a better track (I thought this was the previous descent.......wrong!!!) which eventually vanished at a dry stane dyke. We followed the dyke downhill until it ran out becoming an area of bog and high ferns. Actually we had curved round the northern flank of Stot Hill. Tillyching, the hill to the north kept us in the right direction as I was technically lost. However battling on or tripping/falling on we reached the track close to were we had started so no damage done!
Cairn Mude has escaped my attentions in past due to the weather, running out of time or like yesterday (3/4/2012) gale force winds, blizzards and flying buckets. This was the fourth attempt and today it was much calmer and with supplies from the Alford baker I headed east from Lumphanan on the A980 taking the first minor road south to Kincardine O'Neil. I pulled in after Colliestown.
Head along a track, north west for about a 1/2 mile then head into the woods, south, for a further mile (approx) until a crossroads in tree breaks. Head east and the much ruined cairn is found in a clearence. Still it stands at 13 meters wide and a couple of meters high. Sadly wide trenches have been cut through it, even more sadly I'd left both my phone and camera in the car instead of in the rucksack. So I'll have to go back, no problem as I now know a shorter route.
During my first attempt the farmer at Newton, home to ring cairns, told me that dead soldiers from Macbeth's army were burned on the cairn. On that occasion I was beaten back by thick vegetation and ended up getting lost.
This time I decided to climb to the top of Stot Hill and managed to get lost on the way back down. Somehow I almost ended up in Lumphanan, but found my way back via the public stream, more commonly known as a footpath.
Stot Hill long cairn is only a few meters away from the more famous Cairn Mude. Much damaged and much battered this cairn will probably vanish due to forestation. It is over 20 meters in length, reaches 1 meter in height and is supposed to 8 meters wide (flattened would be a better word).