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

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Giants' Graves (Chambered Cairn) — Fieldnotes

Hmmmmm.....Forestry Commision, those two words spell disaster for this monument. Well maybe that's a bit harsh cos the stones are wonderful, but the views would have been amazing if it wasn't for those pesky conifers. It is a harsh-ish climb, and you don't get the sense of height or views really for it.

But a bit of imagination will quickly get you in the mood, these remains are fine, and ok, the wood around is actually quite atmospheric.

Torrylin (Cairn(s)) — Fieldnotes

Wow! Hot sun beating down in mid-September, a picnic of epic proportions, and a view over Ailsa Craig to dance for!
This is such a lovely place, blackberries on the way, beach in front to check out for sure...

The remains are small, the mound apparently was much bigger. Check out the alignment on the Ailsa Craig rock, obvious, how did it work when the chambers and mound were still intact. Must have been from a bit further off. But now the "gunsight" effect is pretty spectacular.
Cows chill in the next field, a couple have brought their child here, everyone is taking time and taking it in.
Not like on Machrie Moor, where people zoom round the path see the stones (just) and then piss off back to their waiting cars to see the next thing on the list.

Good skillz ancients!!

Machrie Moor (Stone Circle) — Fieldnotes

Just returned from a blisteringly hot(!), September visit to Arran. Our first visit to the moor was greeted with torrential rain, followed swiftly by bright sun. But a return visit rewarded us with bright sunshine, a cloudless sky, and suprisingly, an empty moor!

Take time here, there are so many monuments that your first visit will be one of confusion. Too many stones to take in, all connected by a handy track. Allow at least an afternoon, or even a day. Time seemed to just disappear.

The natural amphitheatre of the moor is spectacular, the sandstone of the main upright megaliths working beautifully and quite oddly (my first red sandstone experience) with the mountains. There are many other circles dotted about, all on their own would be fantastic monuments.But combined with a Stenness-esque centre-piece, it's all almost too much to take in.

So, I reckon, maybe make a preliminary visit, get your bearings, then return for a long, long visit, the rewards are surely great.....
(p.s. if it's raining take your wellies!)
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