Easter Coillechat, Kilmadock, Stirlingshire

Cairn:  OS Grid Reference – NN 68830 04347

Getting Here

The cairn, looking NW

From Doune, take the A84 road to Callander.  As you pass through the hamlet of Buchany, keep your eyes peeled a few hundred yards on as the road dips down and swerves gently right, for the road sign of Drumloist (or Moist as some locals keep amending!) which goes up to the right.  It’s a small single track road that zigs and zags slowly uphill.  After exact one mile you reach a small track on your right (there one left too).  Carefully park hereby (don’t block the gate!).  Across the road, go through the gate on your right and walk along the edge of the field until you reach the burn.  Go across it, and then across the field, through the gate and you’ll see it ahead of you.  In the tick season (summer) treat the brackens as possessed by a plague and avoid it!

Archaeology & History

Looking at its stony face

A curiously forgotten place, hidden from sight, this large rounded grass-covered mound with small upright stones around one side, seems timeless amidst the open fields.  It seems alone, but the denuded chambered tomb of Ballachraggan is just visible 1.4 miles to the northwest on the near-horizon; and there’s a hidden cairnfield just a half-mile away.  This cairn measures 18 yards (N-S) by 16 yards (E-W) and stands 7-8 feet high when you look at it from its southern side.  The top of the mound is a mix of stone and grass with a slight dip in the middle, perhaps by someone in ages past digging, albeit only slightly—perhaps scared away by the old folk buried herein.

One of the most notable aspects of this site is the complete silence.  On my last two visits hereby, a fusion of mists from the low cloud above and the breathing Earth below gave an atmosphere the likes of which lived when this tomb was first built.  On one occasion hereby, no vehicles for several hours gave the silence a curious atmosphere (those of you who like sitting in the rain with the wilderness will know what I mean).  To me this is a gorgeous site…

© Paul BennettThe Northern Antiquarian

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