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

Fieldnotes by markj99

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Giant's Foot (Standing Stone / Menhir)

Visited 02.06.13

The Giant's Foot is large recumbent stone on the W edge of Shap. It is considered by Historic England (go to Links) to be be a remnant of Shap Stone Alignment. It is an irregular flat stone measuring c. 9 feet long, 7 feet wide and 4 feet high.
Directions: A path leading W starts off Shap Main Street between the tennis court and Croft Avenue. After c. 50 yards the path continues SW across a field for c. 120 yards to a junction of dry stane dykes. The path turns SE along a dry stane dyke for c. 50 yards to reach the substantial recumbent Giant's Foot stone.

The Polisher

Without local knowledge finding the Fyfield Down Polisher Stone could be tricky. I have visited it in 2011 via Mother's Jam but I would like to suggest an alternative "foolproof" route to Fyfield Down Polisher Stone.
Park up in Avebury. Walk E out of Avebury on the Wessex Ridgeway. After 1.5 mile you reach a crossroads with The Ridgeway. Continue E along Wessex Ridgeway for c. 450 yards to reach Overton Down Gallops. Follow the Gallops uphill NNW for c. 0.33 miles to the N end at SU12727144. Head NE downhill for c. 120 yards to a solitary thorn tree. Walk c. 20 yards E downhill to a Pyramid shaped rock. Fyfield Down Polisher Stone lies on the edge of a gorse bush c. 10 yards ESE of the Pyramid Rock.

There is a large flat slab with a large rock basin on its upper surface c. 50 yards E of Fyfield Down Polisher Stone. I wonder if the Rock Basin was made by the same people who made the Polisher Stone?

Fernworthy SE (Cairn(s))

Fernworthy SE is a ruined cairn c. 30 yards SE of Fernworthy Stone Circle. The cairn is listed as Monument Number 443898 on Historic England Research Records (go to Links). It is said to denoted the N end of a ruined stone row which has been obscured by afforestation. The cairn measures c. 20 feet across by 1.5 high with putative remains of a cist in the centre. This consists of two earthset stones set at right angles to each other, c. 9 inches high.

Kildoon Fort (Hillfort)

Visited 10.07.22

Kildoon Fort is located on the E end of a E-W ridge c. 1.5 miles S of Maybole. The oval enclosure, measuring c. 60 yards E-W by 30 yards N-S, is protected by natural steep slopes on the N,E & S flanks and a triple ditch & rampart system in the W flank. A monument to Charles Fergusson, Baronet of Kilkerran has been erected in the E end of Kildoon Fort enclosure. The entrance to the enclosure is in the SW corner of the inner rampart. The enclosure slopes from W-E and S-N with an undulating grassy surface. There are no features in the enclosure except for a pointed dressed recumbent stone measuring c. 4 ft long by 1.5 ft wide on the S inner rampart.

Directions: Take the Kilkerran / Dailly road opposite the Police Station in the SW of Maybole. Follow this road out of Maybole for c. 0.7 miles past the 60 mph sign. Take the next right, an unsigned lane. Follow this road for c. 0.8 mile to reach a farm track signed for Kildoon Hill at NS 2989 0803. There is room for one car to park here, c. 50 yards N of Drummullan Farm road. Walk E up the track for c. 0.55 miles, reaching a gateway. From here head W for c. 0.25 miles along an ill defined ridge with Kildoon Hill at the E end.

Castallack 2 (Standing Stone / Menhir)

Visited 19.03.13

I found this large recumbent stone E of Castallack Standing Stone in an adjacent field. The shape and size of the stone would be more suitable for a capstone than a standing stone to my eye. It is possibly the only remnant of a cairn which couldn't be removed due to its bulk.

Cunningham (Standing Stone / Menhir)

Visited 11.05.22

Cunningham Standing Stone lies prone on an E-W Axis within 10 yards of a gateway on Cunninghame Farm road. It is an oval boulder c. 40 inches in diameter and c. 50 inches long with a rounded point on the W. The ground round the stone has been eroded by cattle leaving the stone on a grassy island. Canmore ID 62845 (go to Links) observed that it bears a similarity to the stones in the Torhousekie Stone Circle which is c. 500 yards NNW from the stone.

Fauldinchie E (Burnt Mound / Fulacht Fia)

Visited 08.05.22

Fauldinchie E Burnt Mound is c. 100 yards N of the Fauldinchie Farm Track c. 50 yards after the junction with the Southern Upland Way. The mound is 110 m E of Fauldinchie W Burnt Mound according to Canmore ID 61587 (go to Links). It measures c. 15 feet across by 2 feet high on the edge of marshy ground.

Directions: At the S edge of New Luce, beside the church, take the un-signposted turn up the hill. Stay on this narrow lane for c. 1.1 miles until you reach the sign for the Southern Upland Way (SUW) at NX19106500. There is room to park here. Follow the SUW path for c. 200 yards to reach a stream. Follow the W bank of the stream heading N for c. 70 yards over rough boggy terrain to find Fauldinchie W Burnt Mound. Head E for c. 120 yards to an ill-defined mound N of boggy marshland.

Fauldinchie W (Burnt Mound / Fulacht Fia)

Visited 05.05.22

Fauldinchie W Burnt Mound is on the edge of marshy ground c. 70 yards of the Southern Upland Way path c. 200 yards E of its junction with the public road. The round mound is c. 12 yards in diameter and 1 yard high with a hollow in the SSE slope. Canmore ID 61585 (go to Links) states there is a raised crescent on the NE Arc of the mound.

Directions: At the S edge of New Luce, beside the church, take the un-signposted turn up the hill. Stay on this narrow lane for c. 1.1 miles until you reach the sign for the Southern Upland Way (SUW) at NX19106500. There is room to park here. Follow the SUW path for c. 200 yards to reach a stream. Follow the W bank of the stream heading N for c. 70 yards over rough boggy terrain to find Fauldinchie W Burnt Mound.

Blair Hill (Standing Stones)

Visited 07.05.22

Blair Hill (The Thieves) Standing Stones are erected in moorland c. 600 yards NW of Nappers Cottage on Drannandow Moor. According to Canmore ID 63579 (go to Links) the stones could be the remains of a stone circle. However, there is only one substantial stone in the immediate vicinity of the stones. A half-buried stone slab on its narrow edge, orientated on a NNW-SSE Axis lies between the stones. It's narrow edge tapers from c. 4 to 3 inches wide. Using my walking stick as a probe, it extends underground from the top and bottom of the visible portion to at least 5 feet long. The impressive stones lie on the SE Arc of a round turf enclosure said by Canmore to be modern.

Cairnharrow (Cup and Ring Marks / Rock Art)

Visited 11.03.17

This stone is listed as Canmore ID 63668 (go to Links).
It is a moss covered stone with a large worn ring mark and several cup marks visible in its current state. Canmore lists more ring marks but I didn't remove the moss to look for them.
Access to the site is by climbing up the slope of Cairnharrow for about 0.5 mile across rough ground or by a longer detour from Cambret Hill.

Cambret Moor (Cairn(s))

Visited 27.04.21

Cambret Moor Cairn is a round cairn measuring c. 7.5m in diameter and 0.5m in height according to Canmore ID 90631 (go to Links). It has been almost entirely robbed out, leaving a footprint of moor grass which is almost invisible in the rough moorland. There is a large stone on the perimeter of the E Arc, possibly a kerb stone and a rough circular hollow c. 2m across in the centre of the cairn. A small stone setting remains on the NW Arc of the hollow opposite an exposed cist stone in the S Arc of the hollow.

Cairnharrow (Cairn(s))

Visited 27.04.22

There is a robbed out cairn on the summit of Cairnharrow. It is roughly circular, measuring c. 12m in diameter and 1.3m in height according to Canmore ID 90588 (go to Links). There is a modern stone cairn in the centre of Cairnharrow Cairn, presumably constructed from stones removed from the surface of the cairn. The dry stane dyke S of the cairn could also account for the destruction of the cairn. The resulting turf footprint is covered by rough grass with a circular depression in the N Arc.

West Cairngaan (Standing Stone / Menhir)

Visited 21.04.22

West Cairngaan Stone has been given a spring clean since my last visit in 2011. All of the field clearance stones have been removed leaving West Cairngaan Stone high and dry on a E-W rocky earth plinth. It is visible from the West Tarbet Path which starts at West Cairngaan Farm. Follow the path E then turn S to reach a gate at NX 13093 31346. West Cairngaan Stone is located in an arable field c. 200 yards E of the gateway.

Stroanfreggan Craig (Hillfort)

Visited 11.04.22

Stroanfreggan Craig Hillfort was an Iron Age fort on a ridge rising from the B729 c. 0.5 mile WNW of Stroanfreggan hamlet. The ruined hillfort enclosed c. 0.5 Acre on a lower summit of Stroanfreggan Craig. There is an extensive spread of stones on the N and W flanks, remains of a double wall enclosure according to Canmore ID 64376 (go to Links). The S flank is protected by a steep slope with a possible entrance to the fort up a natural gully. There is also a possible entrance on the E flank via a SE path. The rocky interior is featureless except for a linear scatter of stones in the N quadrant and a modern cairn marker in the centre of the enclosure.

Benlaight North (Cairn(s))

Benlaight North Cairn is an oval green spot in brown moorland at NX 21190 61119. It measures c. 20 feet E-W and 15 feet N-S up to a height of c. 1 foot in the centre. Small earth-set stones protrude from the centre. It is probably a robbed out small cairn.
There is a cairn c. 25 yards W at NX 21170 61117 on a W facing slope. The shape is irregular and there are scattered small stones in the centre indicating that it could be a clearance cairn.
Canmore ID 62411 (go to Links) has an account of some low cairns and hut circles in this area.

Benlaight South (Cairn(s))

Benlaight South Cairn is a robbed out cairn on a natural knoll in a pasture field c. 2 miles N of Glenluce. The circular footprint of the cairn measures c. 25 yards in diameter and c. 5 feet high. It has been converted into a clearance cairn with large stones concentrated on the N and W Arcs. There is a bed of small stones in the centre. There are also several wooden feed troughs dumped on the N Arc. Canmore ID 62412 (go to Links) has a detailed listing of Benlaight South Cairn.

Benlaight South Cairn is c. 500 yards W of Ballach-a-Heathry cairn, a large robbed out cairn which has been similarly mistreated. Benlaight North Cairn is a small robbed out cairn, a green spot in brown moorland c. 500 yards N.

Rutherford's Well (Sacred Well)

Rutherford's Well is a natural spring associated with Samuel Rutherford who was appointed Minister of Anwoth Old Kirk in 1627. It rises c. 100 yards E of Anwoth Old Kirk on the W margin of Bog Hall Wood. According to Canmore ID 63639 (go to Links) a 19th Century Well House with modern repairs and a turfed roof covers the spring. It reaches a height of c. 6 feet.

Lingdowey Burn E (Cairn(s))

Lingdowey Burn E Cairn is a robbed-out cairn c. 0.3 miles SSW of Cairnerzean Farm SW Cairn. All stones have been removed leaving a grassy circular footprint in open moorland. It is "situated on top of a natural knoll" as described in Canmore ID 61552 (go to Links). The cairn has a diameter of c. 18 yards with a central platform c. 12 yards across and up to c. 1 foot in the centre. There is an intermittent earth bank up to c. 1 foot high in the W half of the cairn but the E half has an outer ring of reeds obscuring the perimeter. In the E Arc there is a gap in the reeds. There are several earthset possible kerb stones on the edge of the 12 yard platform on the SW, W and NW points of the circle. The platform has an irregular grassy surface with a concentration of grassed over stones c. 1 foot high in the centre. These stones may be the protruding cist stones noted in the 1985 visit by RCAHMS.

Lingdowey Burn E Cairn is c. 0.4 miles NE of Lingdowey Burn N Cairn over rough moorland.

Cairnerzean Fell (Cairn(s))

I have made an alternative shorter route including a new cairn, Cairnerzean Fell E, which I propose to visit soon. Cairnerzean Cairns II is 3.3 miles long, starting at the Cairnerzean Farm Cairns. It is viewable at https://osmaps.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/route/11462554/Cairenzean-Cairns-II

Directions: Take the A77 S from Ayr to Cairnryan. Drive 2.5 miles S from the 30mph speed limit on the S of Cairnryan. There is an unsigned left turn into a single track road to New Luce in the middle of a long straight at NX 0859 6374. Travel on this narrow road for c. 7.5 miles to a parking place at NX 1503 6754. This large parking space is c. 0.25 miles S of Cairnernerzean Farm Track on the right.

Directions: Take the A77 S from Ayr to Cairnryan. Drive 2.5 miles S from the 30mph speed limit on the S of Cairnryan. There is an unsigned left turn into a single track road to New Luce in the middle of a long straight at NX 0859 6374. Travel on this narrow road for c. 3.5 miles to a parking place beside an old WWII bombing target at NX 1142 6753. Cairnerzean Fell lies c. 2.5 miles E of here. My walking route is viewable on https://osmaps.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/route/11356088/Cairnerzean-cairns
Good walking boots, a GPS device and good stamina are requirements for this 5 mile walk over pathless open moorland.
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I love to travel, especially to antiquarian sites. I'm working through the extensive Cornwall site list with an annual week holiday. Avebury is my favourite spiritual destination. Las Vegas is my favourite sinful destination.

I also enjoy hill climbing however as time passes the hills grow steeper. I have climbed around 30 munros, however, I've also climbed The Cobbler, Stac Pollaidh and Suilven so height is not the only criteria.

I used to play golf (9 handicap) and support Queen of the South however I gave up both bad habits. Horse racing was a more recent obsession. Epsom and Newmarket are my favourite racecourses. At the moment my current obsession is music gigs: Arcade Fire, Dinosaur Jr, Sparks, Jesus and Mary Chain and Belle & Sebastian, my favourite band.

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