Cup-and-Ring Stone: OS Grid Reference – NN 65306 39560
Also Known as:
Along the A827 road between Killin and Kenmore, park-up at the Tombreck entrance and cross the road, taking the long track which eventually zigzags up the slope of Ben Lawers. Keep your eyes on the copse of trees a few hundred yards east that runs up the slopes. Head towards this, past the multiple-ringed Allt a’ Choire Chireinich stone, then AaCC 2 and AaCC3 carvings, then notice on the other side of the stream a couple of large boulders. That’s the spot!
Archaeology & History
This faint but intricately carved petroglyph is one in a cluster of three carvings, right next to each other—and it’s the best of the bunch by a long way. A single cup-marking is found on the flat stone beneath this one (AaCC5); whilst the large egg-shaped boulder in front has perhaps a half-dozen cups on it (AaCC6).
The large flat-topped boulder of AaCC4 however, possesses at least seventeen plain cup markings, along with twenty-four cup-and-rings, six cup-and-double-rings, three cup-and-three rings, three cup-and-four rings, and one cup-and-five rings! There are some carved lines that emerge from several of the cups, with all of the three cup-and-four rings having a carved pathway emerging from the central cup and going out of the concentric system. It’s quite a beauty! And it sits upon the ridge next to the clear drinking waters of the burn, gazing out over Loch Tay and the mountains all around in a quite beautiful landscape.
Immediately above and below the carvings are a number of settlement spots or shielings, known to have been used until recent centuries. They were quite ideal living quarters and some of the old folk here, in bygone days, would have known old customs and stories of this petroglyph.
Hale, Alex, “Prehistoric Rock Carvings in Strathtay,” in Tayside and Fife Archaeological Journal, 2009.
- Yellowlees, Sonia, Cupmarked Stones in Strathtay, Scotland Magazine: Edinburgh 2004.
Acknowledgments: Huge thanks to Lisa Samson, Fraser Harrick and Paul Hornby for their help reaching this site and exploring still further. Let’s do it again sometime before I vanish forever up into the far North!
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian