Clachan An Diridh

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Nearest Town: Pitlochry, Perthshire

OS Grid Reference: NN 92 45 58

Directions: This circle requires a map and basic walking equipment. Park in the centre of Pitlochry, where there are several waymarked trails. Information and car parking available at the Tourist Information office. Follow the ‘Clunie’ trail as waymarked out of town, across the main A9 and uphill into the woods. There are no side trails until you come to a junction with the Clunie trail marked to the right, and a large logging trail to your left and straight ahead. Carry straight on, and no more than 500 yards later, the circle will be visible in a clearing on the right. Allow at least 3 hours walking for the round trip, or 5 hours to follow the full trail.

Site Notes: This is a lovely site, and its remoteness rewards the effort to get here. Obvious as it sounds, it is worth remembering that the builders only ever walked to these sites, and sometimes only by walking to them from a distance, can we now appreciate their setting in the landscape.

The site is buried deep in managed woodland, which although defeating the purpose of the builders-i.e. the view, does lend an air of intimacy and magic to the circle. The stones are veined with rich seams of quartz and covered with lichen, and as usual are worth seeing, notwithstanding the setting in a stone circle. It has been 9 years since I was last here, hence the awful photos, and the site deserves better – time to get my boots on!

April 2009: Well, some 9 years after our first visit we finally returned to find the circle much as it was – after all, what’s 9 years to a circle in it’s 5th millenia? A beautifully sunny & warm day, we sat outside the circle for an hour with our lunch, while our 7 year old boys enjoyed their first visit. As before, the circle was well worth the walk.

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A close up of the stones

A close up of the stones

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All text and photography © Chris Lodge 2009-12