Mid winter sunset over Blackmount
Midwinter Sunset over Blackmount

The prominent Blackmount Hill lies somewhat isolated on the west side of the A702 road between the villages of Dolphinton and Elsrickle; it has views in all directions looking over one of the most prolific pre-historic landscapes in Scotland.

The hill was surveyed for the first time in 1998 by BAG (report soon here). The principal site type recorded were ring enclosures; turf and or stone circular banks, seldom seen with gaps or entrances in their circuits, but occasionally with cairns within them. They are still problematic as to understanding their date and function, however two on the west side of Blackmount are most probably Bronze Age enclosed cremation cemeteries.

The sun sets over Blackmount
The sun sets over Blackmount

Furthermore from each can be seen convincing mid winter sunsets taking place with the sun dipping below the huge cairn on the summit of Tinto Hill to the SW, and at the northerly site another alignment to mid summer sunrise has also been witnessed and filmed. These sites taken along with the Wildshaw Burn Stone Circle near Crawfordjohn where similar observations have been made indicate the attempts of the people of the Bronze Age to understand time and season.

Related reports

Related news