Trestle Cairn, Dere Street, Hownam.
Trestle Cairn stands on an unnamed hill, 200m
east of Plea Shank and immediately adjacent to Dere Street a
Roman road. It measures around 15m in diameter and stands some
0.7m high, with several large boulders set on edge within the
circumference along the south side of the demolished cairn. The
cairn has an uneven surface and is badly disturbed. It's remains
consist of 17 stones distributed within the circumference of the
demolished cairn. Only the 2 stones are now earth-fast, the
other 15 stones have been moved and in many cases broken, so
that any arrangement in which they now lie is fortuitous.
This site is best reached by following Dere Street, the Roman
Road. Take the minor road running south from Hownam then head
right for Oxnam. Dere Street is crossed at Pennymuir Forest, at
the junction leading to Towford Outdoor Centre. On foot or by
mountain bike, follow Dere Street north. Trestle Cairn can be seen
over the wall on the left. Note that parts of the route are very
wet and boggy and sturdy footwear is recommended.
On verge beside Pennymuir Forest.
Finding this cairn was a bonus as it did not feature on my list
of sites to visit when I set out to record the other standing
stones and stone circles in the area. It did not have the dark,
evil atmosphere of the earlier cairn I had visited on Black
Knowe and was altogether a much lighter and happier location. So
much that I was able to sit down for a brew while waiting for
the sun to break through the clouds. The cairn is only a few
metres from Dere Street and the standing stone on Chatto Craig
can be seen to the west, Five Stones, a stone circle can be seen
to the north.