A view of the site from the landward side clearly shows the Knowe (mound) of Swandro − to the left of the tent and with the yellow EDM tripod in the centre. Needless to say, the monument was not built this close to the sea, the beach would have been at least 50 metres away more in-line with the distant low headland (forming one side of the curve of Swando bay). Midhowe broch and chambered cairn (one of the longest stalled cairns in Europe) lie just off-stage right and across the water on Mainland is the broch of Gurness .... quite the place to be during the prehistoric period!

A view of the site Cairn with structures butted up against it

Back after a day of rest and let loose on one of my favourite bits of the site. The cairn wall is curving round on the left on the second image with the entrance still partly covered in plastic. More structures were butted up against the cairn, which we partly uncovered last year, including the upslope cell the back wall of which has just been revealed (the horizontal black & white scale at the back is laying on the top of this latest discovery). The presence of an in situ lintel stone at the 'entrance' to this cell (at the level of the white top of the central of the three upright b&w scales) indicates just how deep what lies below is going to extend ... but we will not get there this year! See Swandro web page for more.

By Jacqueline McKinley, Principal Osteoarchaeologist