One of the smaller hunebedden, D15 Loon, with its ten sidestones and five capstones (four intact but the middle one reduced to a broken fragment lying in the crypt), ranks as one of the most complete passage graves in the Netherlands. It also retains 18 of an original total of 23 kerbstones, and is in fact the shortest hunebed known to have been surrounded by a kerb. These days, only 14 of the hunebedden retain one or more kerbstones. This hunebed also possesses a well defined entrance passage with two pairs of sidestones and a capstone.
Up until March 1870, D15 Loon was still covered by its barrow, which reached right up to the base of the capstones. Unfortunately, it was at that time that the barrow was removed in a mistaken attempt at 'restoration': this was carried out in the belief that the mound consisted of sand that had built up around the hunebed over the centuries, and was not part of the original monument. This event also led to the destruction of much of the earthenware that had been buried in the crypt.
In 1974, a beautiful earthenware jar, a beaker and a piece of bronze—all dating from the Funnelbeaker period (2450-2000 BCE)—were illegally unearthed from the entranceway by two youths from Assen, but were fortunately recovered and placed in the Drenthe Museum.
The bus from Assen to Groningen (Bus No 58) takes you to Loon in just 10 minutes. From the bus stop in the centre of the village, follow the main road (Gasterenseweg) for about 400 metres, then take the first turn off on the left (Heirweg) and continue for another 400 metres. You will see Hunebed D15 Loon ahead on the right long before you reach it.
You can view a short video about hunebed D15 Loon on YouTube, including some amazing aerial movie footage of the monument..
Just out of the village of Loon, one field away from the railway line lies the remains of Loon hunebed. In the ploughed up parsnip field next to it they'd been muckspreading so the place stank, but the sweet sight of D15 soon filled our senses. Though reasonably small, this one still has lots of lovely kerbstones and the rise of its original barrow is still very apparent. It also has its original portal entrance, with capstone still up, like a tiny little dolmen. Tons of character here.