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

Borgue Langwell



Visited: June 22, 2021

The remains of Borgue Langwell broch (red marker on map below) stand near the top of a short valley south of the Langwell Water (stream) near Berridale in Caithness. The structure consists of a grassy mound with remnant walling courses on the south and southwest only. Elsewhere, any stonework that had existed is now totally tumbled into an amorphous stoneheap. The broch mound itself is a grassy dome with a slight saucer-like depression in its summit and the occasional large stone peeking out from its sides.

Getting to Borgue Langwell poses a bit of a challenge. Until a few years ago, the OS map showed a woodland path leading from a car-park on the A9 (blue marker) almost directly to the site. But no longer. The trees have been harvested leaving behind a wasteland of stumps and branches that is almost impossible to cross: and of the original path there remains no trace. Add to this the fact that a large section of the area is now guarded by a high fence—presumably to protect new plantings—and the problem is compounded!

Starting from the car-park, which is 1.5 kilometres south of Berridale, the only practical route is to follow the A9 south. Fortunately, there is a wide grassy verge all the way, which makes this a very safe option. After 800 metres, the band of roadside trees gives way to a wide fire break which heads north towards Borgue Langwell. After a further 600 metres I arrived at a fence and gate. Frustratingly, the broch lies, not on the other side of the gate, but beyond a second fence heading off to the right. With no sign of a gate through this fence (though there obviously must be one somewhere), the remaining option was to clamber over it using the high slatted stile at the side of the gate. The broch lies around a hundred metres away beyond the remains of an old farm steading.
LesHamilton Posted by LesHamilton
4th July 2021ce
Edited 11th March 2023ce

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