The Nine Stanes Recumbent Stone Circle

First rain in around a week fell today (29 December 2011) but it waited until I had paid a visit to the Nine Stanes – the recumbent stone circle at Mulloch Wood near Banchory in Aberdeenshire.

The circle is on high ground, as usual, but the tree line doesn’t allow views now although just along the road there is the most spectacular panorama overlooking the surrounding mountains.

This was a cremation circle, burnt bones having been found within the ring cairn which is evident under your feet although well covered with rough grass now.

This 4-5000 year old circle is incomplete with only 6 standing stones plus a small recumbent, one standing flanker and one fallen. The recumbent top is not even and doesn’t appear to have been worked as some others have.


The circle appears large possibly because the stones are smaller than other circles. In fact the circle is 18m X 14.6m.

Its protected setting has encouraged much growth of lichen and moss on the stones which adds to the character of several of them.

Some stones contained areas of quartz which it is speculated was sought out for its light reflective qualities, mimicking moonlight.

2 Comments to “The Nine Stanes Recumbent Stone Circle”

  1. Just this morning someone suggested I try divining rods (ie wire hangers) when visiting stone circles. I can see my visits have been pretty tame and I should become more proactive.

    What I do get sometimes are strong sensations of walking in the footsteps of the first people who created and used these sites.

    Will definitely try creating some noise of my own. I might even record what happens. Cheers.

  2. There is a strikingly resonant sound quality evident in the landscape at the location of the Nine Stanes which may have played a part in the choice of site for the neolithic people who built this temple (just guessing). Next time you go there, stand at the recumbent and shout out, or bash two rocks together or something, and you’ll see what I mean. The effect is quite other-worldly – just the place to put your gateway to the other-world!

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