I approach this still substantial - although much disturbed - cairn by heading approx north-west across the moor from the Burngrange long cairn. Unlike the latter, no internal detail is now discernable within the more 'rotund' monument - at least not to this traveller during the course of a downpour which renders the lichen-encrusted boulders potentially lethal to the unwary. Thankfully there are no slip-ups.
Time and, in particular, animal husbandry have not been kind to this stone pile ... a large sheepfold abutting the south-eastern arc of the cairn the most significant of several animal enclosures constructed from its considerable mass... and thus disrupting profile. Nevertheless from a number of angles it is clear that this was once a very significant monument... still is, of course, although one lacking the definition originally intended. Yeah, the estimate cited by Greywether (I believe from Canmore) of probably as much as 18m in diameter and at least 2.5m in height does not, by any means, stretch credulity.
A further, less upstanding cairn is visible some way to the (very) approx east. However time has caught up with me....doesn't it just? As I muse upon this inevitability of all inevitabilities which haunt the human condition, I conclude that there really is a whole day's worth of sites to visit just within this 'V' defined by the fast flowing North Medwin and Westruther Burn alone. Much more must go unseen, at least for now. Ha! I've just time to take a quick look at the round cairns south of the Greens Moor long cairn (one of which is incidentally well worth the effort) before heading back to the car to continue my journey to Loch Tay. As you do.
Greywether's notes are a succinct summary of a somewhat confusing, yet very atmospheric long cairn. The location is excellent, set upon the western flank of Horse Law, overlooking Westruther Burn, the water course needing to be crossed if the monument is approached from the Greens Moor long cairn lying virtually directly to the west (a little over half a mile distant and visible upon the horizon). Note that this did not present a great obstacle at the time of my visit and that the minimalist 'bridge' mentioned in G's notes still exists.
Preconceptions are shattered immediately upon arrival, the mass of stone visible from Greens Moor turning out to be a large, drystone sheepfold standing immediately east of the cairn. No prizes for guessing the source of that, then. Orientating myself accordingly, I realise what lays before me is in fact a heavilly robbed long cairn, not the expected round variety. Not an issue, since I love long cairns, me. Even better, there are also the clearly identifiable remaining orthostats of a chamber - G and Canmore cite a possible other, although owing to the profusion of heather I'll need to take their word on that. As regards the obvious one, the stones are substantial and aesthetic, the passage facing south - that is to the right when looking across the chamber towards the sheepfold.
As I sit and have lunch, back facing the lashing rain, the sheer, primeval 'reality' of the moment begins to sink into my consciousness, something infinitely more welcome than the moisture beginning to find its way inexorably through my waterproofs and dampen my knees. OK, accusations of 'wouldn't be such fun if this was how you had to live all the time' hold much more than a grain of truth.... but I do think periodically reminding one's self just how brutal Mother Nature can be - even in the limited UK sense - holds much benefit for the individual. But I digress....
Looking west I notice another, large cairn some way to the right of the Greens Moor long cairn. Must be Westruther and the next port of call. Ha! With all this rain perhaps the 'port' analogy is appropriate? I leave Burngrange long cairn well satisfied... sure, under finer conditions this site would provide an exceptional hang of many hours for those who like that sort of thing - like myself - but Scotland is Scotland and you have to take what you can get.
Another of Greywether's 'obscure specials' which, together with several other monuments in the immediate vicinity, was scheduled for a visit last year. Then, as per usual, time simply ran out. By happy coincidence, however, I happen to find myself with an opportunity to rectify that situation whilst on the way to Glasgow. Right on! Trouble is it is teeming with rain. Not so good.
From Carnwath I take the A70 to (eventually) park just before Redford Bridge. Not sure I'm at the right bridge at first, since I'm unable to get a positional fix until I stop and locate the farm of Waulkmill, tucked away down a track on the right. Then it's a case of crossing the bridge, slipping down to the right and following the left hand bank of the North Medwin between forestry. The path veers left along the treeline where the Greens Moor round cairns should become visible to your right, beyond a fence. Cross this and the long cairn will (hopefully) be self evident.
I wish I could say this is physically a classic monument... however, unfortunately, it is not, having suffered grievious damage, no doubt at the hands of generations of farmers. According to Canmore it is now 'nowhere more than 1m high', although this is hard to judge due to its overgrown nature. What is clear, however, is its length, 'measuring 82m long from N to S by 13m in greatest breadth' (once again according to Canmore). Or in other words, what Greywether said. This is most certainly a 'long cairn', then.
And of course there are the metaphysical attributes, too. What this monument lacks in terms of preservation it more that recuperates in terms of vibe. Extreme vibe. Despite the hammering rain, this traveller felt no compunction to leave whatsoever. To the east, beyond Westruther Burn - about half a mile distant, I think - stands another long cairn. North, the substantial remains of a round cairn.... ditto to the south. Hey, Greens Moor long cairn may be denuded, but don't be deluded, since I would say it is well worth a visit.
The Burngrange chambered cairn 'calls' me. 'C'mon, you know you want to visit me, too'. It's right, dammit. Despite the appalling downpour beginning to penetrate the zips of my expensive overtrousers, I have no choice. Yeah, it'd be rude not to. To the east, then...
One of two relatively substantial round cairns located to the south of the Greens Moor long cairn [along with numerous other small (clearance?) cairns], this tall, well defined monument is described by Canmore thus:
' This well-preserved cairn now appears as a heather-covered mound, composed of small to medium sized boulders. Circular on plan, it measures 11.3m in diameter and 1.7m high, exhibiting a fairly regular, bowl-shaped profile on all sides except the S, where severe stone- robbing has taken place. RCAHMS 1978, visited 1975'
Another lower, less well preserved round cairn is to be found nearby. Unfortunately I was unable to get any images during my visit due to ever-worsening weather conditions, although the Canmore database has some worth checking out.