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Ring Cairn

<b>Raedykes</b>Posted by tarasImage ©
Nearest Town:Stonehaven (5km ESE)
OS Ref (GB):   NO832906 / Sheets: 38, 45
Latitude:57° 0' 22.53" N
Longitude:   2° 16' 35.86" W

Added by Chris

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Photographs:<b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by thelonious <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by thelonious <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by thelonious <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by taras <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by taras <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by taras <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by taras <b>Raedykes</b>Posted by taras Maps / Plans / Diagrams:<b>Raedykes</b>Posted by Chance


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Like other visitors to Raedykes I thought there was 4 cairns/stone circles, however according to Canmore there are five. Canmore is right, unfortunately they don't describe the complete nightmare to find it.

I approached from the north (on a beautiful crisp Spring day), from Eddieslaw looked for cairns here, sadly all ploughed out) and there are much easier routes. After ploughing through a bog, jumping several burns and jumping over several fences I made it to dry land without injury. From here its head to the top of the hill. On the hill several deer looked down, their thoughts easy to read....check that idiot! Polite version!

NO 83220 90680

This ring cairn is surrounded by a stone circle with 9 stones still standing, inside several kerbs remain in place. It has been described before. This is the site nearest to West Raedykes steading.

NO 832716 90608

Sitting a short distance west, about 20m, is a cairn half covered in jabby stuff. Still it looks in reasonable condition and looks like it might have a been a kerb cairn. It has been houked in the centre.

From here I walked past the high gorse, jabby stuff etc to the most famous site.

NO 83226 90655

This is a truly fantastic site with truly fantastic scenery to match the imposing standing stones which appear to be looking west, imo. Apart from these stones smaller stones still stand whilst others have fallen. The inner kerb is in the same condition. Sweetcheat's oft used phrase 'gentle restoration' screams here. Maybe one day!

NO 83220 90680

Slightly to the north of the previous there is a small cairn. A small ditch appears to lead to the possible remnants of a cist. Several kerbs also remain in place.

NO 83255 90610

I walked back past the famous standing stones to look south at the highest of the gorse, whins etc over a fairly ruined fence. There was no way through except to crawl or throw myself into the gorse. After what seemed ages I made it through to the tiniest of clearings. If you find this you are standing on the cairn. Crawling round the edges I found several kerbs still in place. It is almost 7m wide and 0.5m high. There is a small hollow in the middle but nothing to suggest serious the cairn.

As for me, another battering but it doesn't matter as Raedykes is one of my favourite places, an essential visit if in the area.

Visited 15/3/2018.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
22nd May 2018ce

Raedykes is a bit of a misnomer; Raedykes itself is a Roman camp on nearby Garrison Hill, while the ring cairns are actually on a different hill, Campstone Hill. There are four ring cairns, one obvious, one less obvious and two dubious. The most intact cairn, on the very top of the hill, features three large stones which Watt* suggests could be "the precursor of a great recumbent stone circle without a ring cairn", the kind of circle most prevalent in this region.

The choice of location is obvious, commanding a great view across to more modern monuments in the form of the masts on Cairn-Mon-Earn and at Durris in one direction, and Stonehaven and the sea in the other. The nearby Hill of Cairneymore, as the name suggests, would have been a superb source of materials.

Getting there: Take the A597 out of Stonehaven for just over 3 miles; you'll cross one bridge, the Findlayston Bridge, about half way there. Eventually you'll come to a place where there's a turn off the road to the right, up a small hill, with a post box in the wall on your left. Go up this hill and you'll quickly come to a fork in the road.

If, as I did, you want to access the cairns via the Roman camp, carry on up the hill (right fork), and use a map to get across to Campstone Hill! This is an interesting way to go, as you'll go through Cairneymore Hill - which is fairly obviously the source of all the stones in the cairns.

If you want to go straight to the cairns, take the left fork, and carry on until you're looking down on a small cottage, called Union Cottage. There should be three green gates in a 'T' on your right; follow the middle of the 'T' up to the crest of the hill and you're there. Either way, taking an OS Explorer map is a very good idea.

Video of the main ring cairn

*Archibald Watt, "Early Stonehaven Settlers", Stonehaven Heritage Society 1994.
Posted by taras
6th January 2007ce
Edited 1st March 2009ce


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Burl describes a line of 4 ring cairns, the outer two of which have stone circles. He rates them as ruined, but recognisable. Chris Posted by Chris
2nd October 2006ce


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Society of Antiquaries of Scotland - Notes in pdf from 1922

Notes from the proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland from December 11 1922
on Raedykes northern Stone Circle and the inner Stone Setting, together with the Ogam inscription which is incised on its southern side.
Chance Posted by Chance
6th September 2008ce
Edited 6th September 2008ce