I remember coming across my first cairns on the beach at the Mohegan Bluffs on Block Island in Rhode Island and being drawn to the simplicity of these man-made objects that were at perfect balance with and enhancing the beauty of the nature around. Since then, I have come across them all over the world. My recent visit to the ancient cairn of Stonehenge made me wonder what draws man to stack rocks. Modern cairns are made just for their esthetics, our way of leaving a sustainable mark on places we visit. But through history they have been made as burial monuments, for religious ceremony and as property markers or directionals. Here are some other cairns my friends and I have come across in our travels.
Table of Contents
Cathy Merrifield from RoarLoud
On our path we need guidance and direction at times, the route is not always clear. In both hiking and life stay the course to reach your summit.
Laura Lynch of Savored Journeys
In Whistler, Canada, an Inuit Inuksuk (or cairn) was built for the 2010 Winter Olympics that were held in Vancouver and Whistler that year. The Inuksuk was built at the summit of Blackcolm Mountain and at the Whistler Olympic Park as a symbol of hope and friendship. It has become an unofficial symbol of Canada.
Lauren Postgrads & Postcards
I was driving the Ring of Kerry in County Kerry, Ireland early in the morning. This was 1 of 3 separate rainbows I saw! I remember feeling blue that morning but these rainbows turned it all around.
LeAnna Brown at The Economical Excursionist
Settlers in the 9th and 10th Century would often build cairns in Iceland to mark their way. On this particular part of the Ring Road, it was believed that if you left a stone in this area that it would bring you good luck and fortune. Over time, travelers and people started forming them into cairns, spanning quite the distance.
Amar Hussain at Gap Year Escape
My Visit to Upstate New York
You can read more about its hiking and swimming holes here.
Domonique Matthews at www.thesimpleproof.com
The impressive aspect of these cairns at Ruby Beach, Washington in the Olympic National Park, is the quantity of them. The beach has hundreds due to the large amount of rocks on the beach here. They aren’t the biggest or tallest, but they are the most I’ve ever seen in one place!
Rob Taylor at 2Traveldads.com
My photo from Mohegan Bluffs, Rhode Island
In the Deserts of California
On the Summit of Tumbledown Mountain in Maine
I love the idea that Rob is passing on to his children something that humanity has been doing for thousands of years. Another thing to show how connected people are.
8 thoughts on “Cairns Around the World”
This is so cool to see — they are everywhere! We’ve seen them in so many places. It’s fun to see everyone else’s finds!
Thank you for sharing yours with us, Laura.
Thank you for including us, hiking and cairns hold a special place in our lives. Beautiful to see the differences everyone found!
Loved the ones you found on your hikes, Cathy!
Cool! I never thought rock balancing would be that cool. I will try it next time.