04/08/2016 - Hard to go wrong in the Strath of Kildonan. Pick anywhere along its length and you are going to bump into the past. Today we chose Learable Hill. Stone rows, stone circle, chambered cairn, standing stone, cup marked boulders and lots of hut circles - that will do me. Normal way up, crossing the river and the train track south of Suisgill Lodge. It's just a short walk up hill after that. Nice cairn and standing stone but I'd come for the stone rows because let me tell you, I just love stone rows. They really are one of the great mysteries of this island's prehistory, at least they are for me. Multiple rows are rare and this hill has plenty. Brilliant stuff. I think I once read of them described as 'miniliths', great word. It rained petty much all the 5 hours we were on the hill but it didn't much matter. I could of spent all day just plodding round these stones looking for alignments (real or imaginary). Top site and there's even as a bonus a stone circle there as well!
Took some finding, despite guidance from CanMap printouts - but once you spot the large standing stone it becomes considerably easier. Excellent site - the remains of the cairn seem to be surrounded by a broad stone circle. The large standing stone (cross carved into the western face), with the remains of other some stones in a roughly circular arrangement (either snapped or fallen). There are many rows here, and some of them seem to have interesting alignments to geographical land marks - most notably two converging lines that seem to form a triangle with a distant conical peak. The remains of a stone circle of smaller stones appears to lie just beyond the cairn too. Will definately go back and take more time - taking care to search for the cup-marked stones which are down through the village, towards the trees, which we didn't have time to look for.
Nice walk to the site, through the remains of the village of Learable which was cleared in 1815, with nice views all around. Don't visit during tick season, though - you're off path and on heather most of the time.
I'd disagree with greywhether. Spend some time, once the large standing stone has been found, and there is lots to see and find. We were there in August and the vegetation did not impair what we saw. The stones are small and low lying - one of the children said dismissively, is this it? but was quite carried away by the need to look, find and align the stone rows. It is not a lawned manicured site, but then again, it is up a hill in a remote part of Scotland. What should we expect?!?
However, what would the vegetation have been like at the time that this alignment was created?