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Camore Wood

Standing Stone / Menhir

<b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlandsImage © Nicki MacRae
Also known as:
  • Drumdivan
  • Loch-An-Treel

Nearest Town:Dornoch (2km ESE)
OS Ref (GB):   NH780899 / Sheet: 21
Latitude:57° 52' 55.04" N
Longitude:   4° 3' 27.37" W

Added by Rhiannon

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<b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands <b>Camore Wood</b>Posted by summerlands


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This standing stone is about 200 yards into a large farmers field. It sit's into a slight dell, and is very hard to spot from any road.

There are a few ways to get to the stoneā€¦

The first way is through the paths than run through Camore Wood (Forestry Commission). There's a public car park to the South of the wood on the Cuthill road, but you'll need a map to find your way through the forest paths - but it's a nice way to bulk out the walk.

Another way is via the main road out of Dornoch heading towards the A9. As you leave the main part of Dornoch keep your eyes to the left of the road, you'll pass along the edge of a estate of new houses, then shortly after a lone farm - after this, as the road climbs a little, look for a very small sign on the left marking a footpath and a gate in the wall. Beside the gate is a rough, unofficial pull in for one car. Park up, go through the gate and keep heading south for a few yards, through a pretty copse of trees. You exit on a wide footpath, head right towards the edge of Camore Wood. You'll shortly catch sight of the top of the stone in the field on your left. About two thirds along this path is a wide gate into the field, where you can enter the field without getting tangled in barbed wire. The stone is clearly visible. The field currently has a large flock of sheep in it, so best not to take dogs.

The stone itself is very odd - the south and north faces look like they are made of two entirely different types of rock (well to my untrained eye at least).I t's well over 8 feet tall, but has developed quite a lean to the North, which along with it's tapering shape make it feel like it could topple at any time.

In the past when I have visited the field has been smooth pasture, but this year it's been ploughed to within 2/3 feet of the stones base to plant turnips for the livestock.
summerlands Posted by summerlands
27th February 2011ce


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It seems very likely to me that the following folklore relates to this impressive sounding stone ("a large monolith of sandstone, roughly quadrangular at base, tapering to a point at its upper extremity. It is 8' 9" in height above the ground, 2' 5" across the W face at base, and 1' 10" across the N", according to the RCAHMS record).
There lived once upon a time, in Sutherland, a great dragon, very fierce and strong. It was this dragon who burnt all the fir-woods in Ross, Sutherland, and the Reay, of which the remains, charred, black and half decayed, may now be found in every moss. Magnificent forests they must have been, but the dragon set fire to them with his fiery breath, as he rolled over the whole land. Men fled from before his face, and women fainted when his shadow crossed the sky-line. He made the whole land a desert. And it came to pass, that this evil spirit, whom the people called "the Beast," and Dhu guisch (of the black firs), came nigh to Dornoch, as near as to Lochfinn, from whence he could see the town, and the spire of St. Gilbert - his church.
"Pity of you, Dornoch!" roaredthe dragon.
"Pity of you, Dornoch!" said St. Gilbert and taking with him five long and sharp arrows, and a little lad to carry them, he went out to meet the "Beast."
When he came over against it he said, "Pity of you!" and drew his bow. The first arrow shot the Beast through the heart.
He was buried by the townspeople. Men are alive now who reckoned distance by so or so far from "the stone of the Beast" on the moor between Skibo and Dornoch. The moor is now planted, and a wood called Caermore waves over the ashes of the fir-destroying dragon. - (From Alexander the Coppersmith.)
p157 in
The Folk-Lore of Sutherland-Shire
Miss Dempster
The Folk-Lore Journal, Vol. 6, No. 3. (1888), pp. 149-189.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
23rd November 2006ce
Edited 23rd November 2006ce


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Highland Council HER Record

summerlands Posted by summerlands
27th February 2011ce