A useful little guide giving concise details of some of the prehistoric monuments to be found in the area.... also featuring images of the Corn Du cist under excavation.
The link accesses an 'Historic Landscape Characterisation' for East Fforest Fawr and Mynydd-y-glôg issued by CPAT.
Worth a look to sketch in some background to what is a worthwhile walk in its own right.
Gladman... aka Citizen Cairn'd. Yeah, every monument blows me away, but in particular those highland piles of stone with the appropriately monumental views. Visiting them, I think, helps engender a certain 'connection', however intangible, with this land of ours, providing an indispensable reference point for those of us struggling to make sense of this so called 'computer world' Kraftwerk warned us was a'coming in 1981....
Suffice to say, then, that mine is not an exercise in dryly cataloguing sites for the benefit of future generations - as much as I might try I haven't yet been able to embrace altruism to that extent - but rather an attempt to try and reconcile why I am so incredibly moved by these constructions of stone and/or earth representing a time when everything was, by all accounts, literally a matter of life and death. Yeah, just as an empty house appears to retain echoes of past humanity... an illusion, perhaps, but symptomatic of the consciousness that apparently sets us apart as a species by 'locking us out of the forest'... so does the stone circle, the chambered cairn, the long barrow and the mountain top funerary cairn. We may be only able to make an (hopefully educated) guess as to what forms the human interaction may have taken - but clearly it mattered. A lot.
I make no claims for my contributions except to state that I've done my best to relate what I've seen. Enjoying the moment always takes precedent. The majority of my earlier images are (variable quality) scans of archive prints taken back in the days when photography was, well, 'photography', the others idiosyncratic digital attempts to capture the impossible.... 'mood', a sense of vibe ... without that false post production manipulation. I'd like to think some of them convey something of what I've felt. Likewise my opinions are those of an enthusiastic amateur lacking further state education. If you like what you see, why thank you! But please go see for yourself, make up your own mind, relate what you think, share what you experienced... do your own thing, so helping to keep the facists, communists, authoritarians and the dark shadow of organised religion from the door. As the great Ian Dury once said, 'Be inspired, be inspiring, be magnificent!' ... and thus the circle turns in on itself to go round again, as upon the great kerb stones at Bru na Boinne....
However... let's not get carried away. Steady now. In a society where computer generated fantasy is all too prevalent, where many people seem - to me - unable to even walk down the street without plugging into the 'matrix' machine, please be aware that reaching some of the more remote upland sites in the British Isles can be potentially dangerous, even life threatening, for the unprepared... or arrogant. Treat the landscape and weather with the respect they deserve (take map, compass, waterproofs etc) and you hopefully won't go far wrong. If in doubt, pop a question in the Forum. That's why Mr Cope puts up the readies to run TMA.... Thank you Julian.
So cheers... to Mr Cope for being his inspirational, confrontational self, showing that field archaeology can be FUN! - hey, who'd have thought it? ...to my sister (the wondrous Mam Cymru) for using her female 'macro' vision to help me see the detail throughout an ongoing re-exploration of the South Walian uplands, albeit upon dodgy ankles, knees etc... to my own mam for insisting 'young men should have adventures' (that was a while back, now!).... and my Dad for unwittingly inspiring a profound love of high places. Oh, and to Aubrey Burl for those pioneering guides BC.... 'Before Cope'.
For what it's worth some of my other inspirational people are:
Charles Darwin (for his humanity... amongst, er, 'other things'... although let's not forget Wallace for forcing the great man's hand with his own magnificent contributions);
And then, in no particular order:
George Orwell (peerless essayist with the ability to change his mind); Michael Collins (things are not often black and white...); Robert Moog; Winston Churchill (for all his faults); Martin L. Gore (favourite songwriter...from just up the road!); Big Steve Chamberlain (sorely missed); Giorgio Moroder - the analogue sequencer; Richard Dawkins (much maligned - and asks for it - yet helping to carry the torch of reason during an age of devolutionary religious resurgence); Shane MacGowan (for my North Walian soundtrack... and for making Christmas that little bit more tolerable!); Sophie Scholl (words fail me); W A Mozart (ditto); Manic Street Preachers (the true spirit of South Wales, not the bleedin' misogamist male voice choirs); Nigel Kennedy; Pat Jennings; Stuart Adamson; Will Shakespeare; Kraftwerk; Harry Hill (there's only one way to find out!); Vince Newman; Claudia Brucken (proving Germans do have passion); the (Allied) generation of WW2 for making this possible; Mr Beethoven; Marc Almond; Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy; John Foxx; Christopher Hitchens; Mulder and Scully; John Le Mesurier (do you think that's wise, sir?).. and anyone who has ever asked 'Why?' - the true legacy of punk. Last but not least, Gaelic beauty Karen Matheson... 'the call is unspoken, never unheard'.
George Orwell - '...during times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act'....
Norman MacCaig - 'I took my mind a walk. Or my mind took me a walk — Whichever was the truth of it'.
Alan Bennett - 'Life is rather like a tin of sardines, we're all of us looking for the key'.
Martin L. Gore - 'Like a pawn on the eternal board; Who's never quite sure what he's moved toward; I walk blindly on....'
Truman Capote - 'Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavour'.
Winston Churchill - 'KBO'.