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


Stone Circle


When planning my trip to Galloway I had resolved months previously that Torhouskie and the adjacent stone row would be the finale...on my visit to the area in 2014 I'd driven within a couple of miles, but, being more focussed on garden visits I'd not done much research beyond scanning a map and tourism website or two. Cairnholy 1 - Torhouskie 0. No regrets about Cairnholy... a 'must' for anyone even vaguely interested in stones, and Cairnholy 2 was subsequently my HH avatar for some time... but having subsequently researched more about other Galloway sites I felt chastened that Torhouskie had been overlooked. No mistake this time. It had been a gorgeous final day of site visiting.... Barsalloch, Blairbuy, Wren's Egg and Nest.. where fieldwalking had revealed things other than what had been expected or recorded, Drumtroddan, Rispain. Now, with the sun dropping to the horizon and a dreamed about sunset in prospect in minutes, everything had fallen into place. I had reached my goal, and the photos I'd hoped for a click away. I had not met any other site visitors all holiday, had places to myself, absorbed, photographed without heads appearing over stones or popping out from behind them, such a contast to my visit to Callanish in 2012. A holiday of solitary bliss. Apart from f**king my leg broching that is. I parked in the small layby adjacent, through that little gate. I had not looked at any images beforehand, and had not either realised or remembered from reading how small the stones were. Sunset shots would have to be achieved by lying down, contortion or a combination of the two. The fence surrounding the site is far too constricting, my only criticism of this place. I circled the stones within the fence, climbing up on its western side, trying to get as much of the sunlit side of the circle into shot as possible...holding my camera and smartphone above my head, hitting and hoping. In retrospect this was the one site where photography had way too much precedent over absorbing, chilling. I need to return as an act of contrition. I even forgot to pat. A cow over the other side of the fence stood looking at me balefully while performing its bodily functions while I teetered atop the wire. Fair comment, perhaps. Now for the artyfarty contrejour. I moved round towards the gate, laid down on the manicured grass, looked at the red sun on the horizon perhaps a little too long, got my silhouettes..such was the closeness of the fence that I could only get three stones in one shot in front of the smouldering orb however much I pressed against the wire. I felt I had done my best. The stone row awaited on a rise over the other side of the road. I closed the gate and as I got to the other side of the road a car drew up. Visitors. I had missed them by under a minute. My site solitude record remained intact. Thank you circle, thank you sun. Sometimes things work out. spencer Posted by spencer
10th November 2015ce

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