We spent ages trying to locate this site, Man's poorly signposted roads really not helping in the endeavour. We seemed to keep missing turnings, coming back around to the same bits of road, and driving over The Fairy Bridge three times (perhaps by not wishing the feyfolk a 'Laa mia' as we crossed, they contrived to muddle our way!). Finally in frustration we decided on a different tactic and took the car down to the parking spot at Port Grenaugh on the B25 to see if an approach on foot was viable.
The parking spot looked out over a pleasant cove, and at the beach a signpost pointed out the coastal path. Facing the sea we headed right, the path climbing up steeply to high headland, but with lovely views out along the coast, as we were buffeted by the wind. Heading west along the path a small way we came to an intersection, where a public footpath branched off to the right, bearing north-westerly across fields dotted with sheep, and towards Ballafurt farm. At the farm the footpath comes out onto a proper tarmac lane which we followed up to a T-junction, bearing left to take us toward Arragon Moar. Keeping an eye out in the fields to the right we soon spotted the tumbledown remains of Arragon Moar cairn, and heading through an open gateway, with very grand castellated gateposts, we finally entered the field, the larger mound of Arragon Moar Circle now dominating our view.
The mound on which the stones sit was much larger than I though, and the twelve stones which form the circle were satisfyingly chunky, a couple of them being large quartz blocks which stood out against today's grey skies. Arragon Moar is like no other site I've been to, yet another of Man's enigmatic monuments.
The stones of the circle hunker down in a depression on the mound, and from inside, as well as affording us some shelter, we were able to look out to sea, as raincluds gathered. It also provides a good view for plane spotting, as we were able to observe the planes taking off and landing at Ronaldsway airport nearby.
The rain starts spitting at us, and it's freezing cold, my hands going numb. I can imagine on a fine day this would be a great place to spend some time, but for now we are going to check out the nearby cairn before heading back to the warmth of the car!
Visited 27th August 2003: Signposted from the A25, a tiny dead-end road runs past the field where Arragon Moar Circle sits. The road is only really used by farm traffic, and you'd be forgiven for thinking it was private. There's an absence of any signage to tell you where to stop once you've left the A25, so a map is very handy.
About 1km along the road it changes direction (turning south) and there's a gateless gateway into a field straight ahead of you. This is the best place to park and view the circle (and it's neighbor, Arragon Mooar Burial Cairn) from afar, or get a closer look by continuing on foot. When we visited Arragon Moar the field had recently been ploughed, and everywhere was really dry and dusty in a Holy Land kid of way. We parked up, and tramped through the dust to the circle.
Of course it's not really a stone circle (there aren't any true stone circles on Mann), but the site does consist of a close circle of relatively large orthostats sticking up out of a mound. Once this was a burial cairn, but now it may as well be an embanked stone circle, the end result is so darned close.
The views out to sea from Arragon Moar Circle are spectacular, especially looking south west towards Langness. If Arragon Mooar Circle and Arragon Mooar Burial Cairn are related to each another, then the circle must represent the burial of a superior chief/priest because it's got a much better position (in my humble). High up, overlooking the sea in one direction and the rolling fertile landscape in the other, it's a potent place to put a tomb. Well worth a visit, but like so many of the sites on Mann, not even slightly wheelchair friendly.