The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian


Standing Stones


Where do I start? What can I say that hasn’t been said before? – Probably not much.
I won’t talk too much about the stones themselves as there is nothing new to say. Instead I will try to recount my ‘feelings’ when visiting the site to watch the sun set, the sun rise and in the middle of the day.

As the B+B we were staying in was only a 15 minute walk away I was lucky enough to visit the stones several times. (You could see the stones from the bedroom window!).
I guess I have now spent more hours at Callanish than any other prehistoric site I have visited – not a bad thing!

The ‘sunset visits’ – 30.5.12 and 1.6.12

After a long days travelling we got to the B+B and collapsed on the bed. However, it didn’t take long to recover once we had had a cuppa! I looked out of the window and saw a dark blue sky and the standing stones calling me – how could I resist?

Karen fully understood (bless her) and she stayed with the children while I headed up the road. I did take a jacket but left my shorts on – not a good idea it turned out! I followed the road (signposted Post Office – which was actually someone’s house!) up hill which came out at the car park next to the standing stones. This was not the road which leads to the visitor centre and official car park.

There were a couple of people milling around (mostly Scandinavian) who stood primed with their cameras to capture the sun setting on a clear evening. My initial thoughts when seeing the stones was surprise that the site wasn’t bigger, although the individual stones are of an impressive size – particularly the tallest stone. I was also struck by the swirling patterns in the stone which seemed to captivate visitors – myself included. These seemed to change when viewed at different angles and you could not help but run your hands along the swirls and contours of the stones.

The wind by now had picked up and the temperature dropped as the sun started to set. Everyone else was wrapped up in ski jackets, woolly hats, scarves etc and there was I in a light summer jacket and shorts – much to their amusement! I took my photos as the sun set and headed back to the warmth of the B+B. By the time I got back I was freezing (not helped by being unwell) and I spent a long time in the shower warming up.

My second sunset visit was the following evening – this time properly prepared with padded trousers, jacket and hat. By now I was feeling much better and enjoying my visit a lot more.
It was another cloudless evening and there were only a couple of local dog walkers for company this time.

I again walked amongst the stones, stoking the contours (you really can’t help it!) and spotting more swirls and patterns within the stones. I walked up and down and up and down again, marvelling at the stones and generally appreciating the stones a lot more than I did the night before. The site somehow seemed bigger as well. It was still windy.

I looked around and admired the views of lochs and hills, changing appearance in the diminishing light. I still hadn’t seen ‘Sleeping Beauty’ in all her glory yet – but that would change! There are certainly worse places to be than sunset at Callanish……….
Posted by CARL
2nd July 2012ce

Comments (2)

You lucky lucky thing. Great stuff. thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
2nd July 2012ce
Much enjoyed reading this Carl .. its always good to read the realistic bits too. Warm clothing a good tip for even a summer trip - its a long way north.

tjj Posted by tjj
2nd July 2012ce
You must be logged in to add a comment