To be honest I don’t know if I found this Cairn?
There are several patches of stones hidden amongst the ferns and they all looked pretty much the same.
Was one of these the Cairn? – I honestly don’t know.
Perhaps a winter visit would be best?
On the plus side there are decent views down the valley to be had.
Head north along the A4061 towards Treorchy.
Just before the B4223 junction there is a place to park on the right in front of a locked forestry commission? access road. There is room to park without blocking the gate.
Head along the access road which zigzags up the hill until you are amongst the trees.
(When you come to the fork in the road go left)
When you come to a stone lined drainage ditch (about 1 metre wide) you have to jump across it and scramble up a steep bank. At the top of the bank is a barbed wire fence you need to negotiate. You then come out onto the Hillfort which is clear of trees.
No doubt there is an easier way to get to the Hillfort but I always seem to find the hard way!
It is a steep old climb and takes about 30 minutes. Given the obstacles it is one for the fairly fit and mobile only I would say. I was pretty knackered when I got to the top!
There is not too much to add about the Hillfort. It is fairly flat and mostly covered in ferns. There are also lots of groups of stones and rough grass covering the site.
An oval bank about 1 metre high is the most discernable part of the Hillfort.
Didn’t think I would find this one but for a change I did!
At the junction of the A4107 / A4061 there is a view point with a large car park.
Park here. (If you are lucky there is sometimes a burger van parked there)
Looking down the valley there is a ‘path’ running along the hillside to the right.
This is the ‘path’ which runs close to the Cairn. You cross a small stream on the way.
Looking at my notes and the terrain in front of me I didn’t expect to find this Cairn but thought I would try anyway.
It takes about 15 minutes to walk to the site and the Cairn is quite difficult to spot.
It is in amongst ‘spiky’ grass and consists of a small mound of stones.
Despite being a pretty bleak place to visit there are decent views to be had.
One best to visit on a nice day – if they ever have nice days up here?
Found the following verse sometime back and wrote about it, Iolo Morgannwg was obviously an interesting character but fought shy of truthfulness....
As the sun, so shy, speeds on to hide behind the western hills
I stand within this
Ancient circle with its rugged stones
Pointing to the sky
Like the digits on the clock of time -
The time that has refused to move,
As if the keeper of this heather hearth has gone to bed
Remembering not to lift
The fallen weights of Time and Space.
The first verse of one of Iolo Morgannwg’s poem, some would call him a fantasist who created an idea or vision of a Celtic Druidic order in the 18th century.
His first meeting of the bards was on Primrose Hill in London, where he had erected twelve stones called the Great Circle and a central altar stone known as the Maen Llog, this was in 1792. It is said of Iolo that he constructed an “elaborate mystical philosophy which he claimed represented a direct continuation of ancient Druidic practice. His use of laudanum may have contributed to this fabrication, though many of his writings fall between a small truth and a large imaginative myth that he wrote!
In 1795, a gorsedd meeting took place at the Pontypridd Rocking Stone, near Eglwysilam in Glamorgan. This was a huge slab of natural slate stone (the Maen Chwyf), and this stone became a meeting place, though the circles were yet to be put up.
The word gorsedd, which in Welsh means throne, but is also loosely used as a coming together of bards. Julian Cope in his book The Modern Antiquarian says of this rocking stone ‘that it stands high on the ground overlooking the confluence of the two great sacred rivers Rhodda and Taff,’ and that this gorsedd stone must have had great significance in prehistoric times. The stone is surrounded by two circles plus an avenue but the circles are not prehistoric, and it now sits in a pleasant landscape next to a small cottage hospital.