Last Photographed: Saturday 7th July 2007
The Hurlers is another Bronze Age monument that can only be roughly dated to around 2000-1500BC. It consists of three aligned stone circles in close proximity to one another. The Southern circle is the smallest at around 90ft in diameter. Only two of its stones remain standing, with a further seven fallen. The remaining stones that would have completed the circle are missing.
The middle circle is the largest of the three at 135ft in diameter. It's slightly elliptical, and this measurement is taken at its longer axis. 14 of its stones remain.
The Northern is circle is 105ft in diameter and features 15 stones, although four of these are fallen. An estimated nine are missing.
Two outlying stones known locally as "The Pipers" (not to be confused with the other Cornish stones of the same name!) stand close together about 300 feet from the main circles.
The central and Northern circles are believe to have once been linked by a granite pathway. The Northern circle was also paved with granite, while the central circle had an interior covered with quartz crystal.
The name of the site relates to the old Cornish game of 'hurling' (believed to be Celtic in origin), that involved casting a silver ball into the air with the objective of one team carrying it successfully to the other team's goal. Allegedly, St Cleer discovered his congregation busy at a game of hurling when they should have been attending church. When they refused his summons, he turned them to stone for their sin.
Some visitors feel that the highly visible remnants of ruined mine buildings and the TV mast looming above the hills in the middle distance detract from the ambience of this site - but I don't share that view. My personal feeling is that they lend the site a unique mix of ancient and modern mystery, enfolding the stones into a wider tapestry of history and natural beauty. The backdrop has a stark, rugged quality that I found really bewitching. This is undoubtedly one of the most striking sites that I've visited.