Arrive here early afternoon... hot, bothered, late and in dire need of a good spot to chill out, following an unscheduled drive to Argyll Tyres in Lochgilphead to replace a tyre (obviously), duly punctured near Auchnaha, on the other side of Loch Fyne... I guess some may feel the location of said event is more than coincidental, bearing in mind what has befallen the chamber there? Hmm. No comment for the sake of my sanity. Wibble... the first puncture in 20-odd years, and it occurs there... wibble. Access to Achnagoul, as mentioned before, is excellent, the farm indicated upon the A83, with a large 'parking' area where the rough track veers left towards the farm. Hope over the fence, up the hill to the copse of trees and there you are.
Thankfully there can be few better places to relax in these Isles than here, perched upon a hillside near Achnagoul Farm, a splendid location overlooking the aforementioned Loch Fyne. Nice. No, it's much more than that and I heartilly concur with the previous two (very distinguished) gentlemen's comments... this has to be one of Scotland's finest long cairns. Some claim, indeed, in a country liberally blessed with such a rich seam of treasures.
The cairn itself is substantial, a longitudinal trench allowing the visitor to, unusually, walk the length of the monument from within. A large orthostat highlights a lateral chamber, but it is the main chamber, with superb capstone in situ, which, quite rightly, wins the plaudits. The narrow entranceway to the chamber is pretty impressive, too, with some nice stonework. A tight squeeze to enter, with condensation running down the inner faces of the orthostats, this chamber is just what the doctor ordered right now. Chilling out in all senses of the term, not just the most literal. Alright!
Time appears to stand still, but the watch all too soon indicates the passing of the afternoon and decision time.. do I head for another site, or have a look at the companion long cairn within the nearby forestry? I choose the latter, since, well, whatever schedule I had is now history following Stockie Muir yesterday and this morning's shenanigans. Trouble is I've left map and compass in the car, some woodland blunderings making it clear I can't blag my way out of this one. I must retrieve them...
Off the A83 in between Inverary and Lochgilphead is Achnagoul farm, half way up the farm track is spaces for half a dozen cars, this is where we parked.
Whilst nonchalantly jumping the fence a car passed us going up to the farm, catching us somewhat redhanded, but they only smiled and waved so we carried on up the hill. We found this very long chambered cairn lounging around in the shade of two big trees like a fat lazy lion, but it came upon us suddenly as we couldn't see it untill we'd crested the hill, obviously it was meant to be seen from afar, probably to the south and west.
It was a bit cramped in the chamber with the kids, and there's only just enough room to squeeze in through the deliberately small entrance, the capstone is large and heavy and seemingly born to be a burial chamber capstone, as it fits so snug.
I'm a bit surprised only me and GW have been here, it's a really big edifice and though the central chamber is all gone bar one orthostat its still in great condition and the setting is truly inspiring looking over the fine Loch Fyne to the snow capped mountains, and all the autumn colours coming through, it was a shame I had only limited time and daylight.
I had expected this to be a good one but not as good as it turned out to be.
This Clyde cairn with one axial and one lateral chamber is truly megalithic in its construction with massive sidestones and capstone in the axial chamber. It's one of the few chambered cairns in mainland Scotland where you can actually get inside.
Great location too with views down Loch Fyne.
There is plenty of parking space on the Achnagoul farm road just after you have turned off the main road.
The person I spoke to about access was not the farmer but said that the farmer had no problem with visitors. Useful to know if you turn up and there's no one about.