Visited this site a few years ago. When we arrived the sun was out and there was this guy sitting on the centre stone playing an acoustic guitar, it was really chilled out.
We went to look at the mounds, carried on into the next field and came upon a massive hole cut deep into the ground, and I mean massive. I thought it was maybe an old mine or something, it looked man made, odd thing is you could'nt really see it until you reached it.
After a while we made it back to the circle, the guitar player was gone and the sky was overcast, I was amazed at how sheltered the inside of the circle felt, no breeze, no sound, it was an incredibly calming experience like I had shut the door on the world and its worries.
wed.22nd may 02
got unnecessarily lost on the way here from stanton moor! stupidly left my camera in the van too! never mind, a majestically wild and windy early evening spent here was well worth it.. i was overwhelmed by this place; in stark contrast to the nine ladies , arbor low is awesomely free; beautiful big sleepy grey stones set in a surprisingly large henge .. the skies were sweeping so quickly across as i sat there, i forgot all sense of time..the way the bank rises up so steeply almost makes you feel as though you've gone down into the hill whilst still being aware that you are on top of it! i wondered whether the stones might have stood upright at some point, but somehow it seemed wholly appropriate that they were recumbent, almost echoing the land spread out before them. as i stood on the hill behind looking down at the henge and stones, it struck me that it looked utterly perfect just as it was! gooorrrgeous.... x
One small thing that julian says above which is not confirmed is that
the long stones were standing. This has never been proven and in fact the earth below the stones was found not to 'be deeply disturbed' therefore implying that they have always been recumbant
Oh and don't forget to walk widdershins thrice around the bank for a healthy life (according to my great gran who used to live at the farm
when she was very young!)
We arrived at the farm car park, after just reading Julian's note about the barking dogs. Sure enough stood waiting in the car park, unchained, was one of these dogs! We sat in the car for a while, the dog strolled over and plonked itself outside my door, then just stared. Images of savaged ankles ran through my paranoid brain. Eventually my mate braved it and got out of the car, to which the dog rolled over - it only wanted to be petted! So much for the barking guard dogs! Next the dog proceeded to lead us round the site - first the henge and circle, waiting on the burial mound as we took it all in, then ran over the field to Gib Hill, again waiting while we took it in. Once we were done it was off into a nearby field and just ran round and round as we drove off. And it didn't even expect any payment.
My advice for future visitors: Take some dog biscuits!
Welcome to the Arbor Low Environs Project website. This is a new project which will be exploring the landscape surrounding the henge of Arbor Low in the Peak District. The project is a collaboration between archaeologists, students, volunteers and farmers.
The project has a number of questions which it seeks to address, including how has this landscape been experienced through time? For some it seems that a monument such as Arbor Low exists in isolation, built by unknown hands at some unknown point in time in the past, for some as yet unknown reason. This project will be bringing together the various strands of what we do know and trying to develop a new, broader understanding of not only the monument but the landscape around it.
Unfortunately the 2012 digging season is over but they are planning 5 years of work.
It's been six years since I was last here, flipping blimey, really? it was an equinox then too, but spring not Autumn as it is now, well actually the equinox is tomorrow, in the afternoon some time, that would kind of ruin your chances of a good sun rise I'd have thought. My day of is the 21st though so that's why i'm a day early, I'm not happy about it though, I try to get out on these days above all others, it just has to be done, almost as if the fate of the world rested in my being at some stones for the sunrise. I've lied to work in the middle of Christmas working, I've gone out a couple of days after having complicated surgery, I've gone to the lake district, forgotten my daughter and gone back and then on to the Peak district, it's important to me, saving the world, and everyone else, probably.
With Arbor low being so close to me I was well in time for the sunrise, but unfortunately the sky didn't look like it wanted to cooperate, it was a fairly grey day, I sighed inwardly, then realised I was alone and sighed out loud. But then a miracle happened over to the east there was a small thin sliver of actual sky, close to the horizon, could I dare to hope that the sun would pass up through this tiniest of gaps. I unpacked my sitting mat and sat upon it, they're very handy things, sitting mats, if you find one on a mountain top I strongly recommend you pick it up and nick it, then I waited for the great luminary to make an entrance, however brief it may be, if at all.
Whilst I waited from my vantage point on the west bank I could see that were it to rise where I predicted it would be just to the left of the big barrow in the henge, right where a gap in the henge is, was the gap made by the building of the barrow, or is it especially for folk like me to spy on the secret paths of the sun. I also wondered where the ancient people would have stood and watched what ever was going on here on days like these, were they outside the henge? upon the henge? in the ditch? in the circle? did they even stand at all, it might have been a dancing kind of experience, I don't do dancing, not sober anyway, so I continue to sit, and wait.
Until the waiting was over, the sun was coming, and I could see it through my crack in the cloud, I don't think I've ever said that before, but there it was, a golden sliver of beautiful light, I photographed it, but my skills are seriously lacking in low light, but you give it a go don't you? without resourcing to multiple cameras and much trickery, or perhaps not.
It only took five minutes and its completely passed through my crack, I saw it all, just not all at the same time, then it was gone, swallowed by the grey.
World saving duties over I set about the stones, inspecting each one individually, on one of the stones on the west side I think I spotted a couple of very worthy cup marks, I'm not sure I've seen them before, nor heard of them, so It's always worth the time to inspect each stone singly.
Most of these stones could be re-erected, much to the benefit of the site, Burl called Arbor low "the Stonehenge of the north", but that doesn't seem to bring the crowds, imagine if the stones were a standing. Some couldn't be stood back up though as they've shattered into up to a half a dozen pieces, but it's OK to have a few lying down, isn't it.
From the henge bank Gib hill is looming large at the back of the next field, I always go over before I head off to pastures new, not sure why, I don't think it matters. The information board tells me that Gib hill is two cairns, a long one with a round one on top, I don't think I knew that before either. Another cairn can be seen from here, across the big road the A515, Lean low it's called, i'm off there now. Tatty bye.