NS3778 : Old quarry pit

taken 7 years ago, near to Renton, West Dunbartonshire, Great Britain

This is 1 of 10 images, with title Old quarry pit in this square
Old quarry pit
Old quarry pit
The round, bracken-filled hollow in the foreground is a relic of quarrying activities. A grey lump of rock, the same material as was quarried here, can be seen behind the pit, near the left-hand edge of the image. Behind that is part of Carman Reservoir.

In the satellite map linked from the end-note, this pit is indicated by a light blue marker pin, labelled "Quarry Pit 14". See LinkExternal link for a zoomed-in view that is centred on that marker.

I have not submitted pictures of all of the pits in this area (although I do have photographs of them). For example, about 20 metres to the ENE of this pit, there is a group of very small and shallow depressions ("Quarry pits 13" on the satellite map); they are also relics of quarrying, but they are fairly inconspicuous, and, photographically, appear as little more than bare patches in the heather that otherwise covers the area. Likewise, just 15 metres to the SSW of the pit shown in the present picture, there is another one quite similar to it, though less distinct (it is "Quarry pit 15" on the satellite map); it is set into a slope, and is open on one side.

As the satellite map (see the end-note) makes clear, all of these pits lie on a line of underlying limestone deposits. In the background of the present picture, a little right of centre, at a high point of the ground is a dark feature, a NS3778 : Cornstone outcrop; it lies on another line of deposits, parallel to the one on which the pit is located. The course of these deposits is indicated by pale blue lines on the satellite map.

The various pits (large and small), outcrops, and underlying deposits do not feature on the OS map, but those deposits, arranged on several parallel lines, are a major factor in the topography of the muir, and hence make their presence felt on the OS map as wiggles in the contour lines. The vegetation cover is also different, although this may depend as much on topography as it does on the difference in pH caused by the limestone: the high ground over the deposits tends to be appear darker from a distance because it is covered with heather; in contrast, the hollows formed there by old quarry pits tend to fill with bracken (as illustrated by the present picture). Where the limestone itself is exposed, it also supports a distinctive flora.
Carman Muir: outcrops and old quarry pits

See Link (in a Geograph article) for further information, and LinkExternal link for an annotated satellite view on which various features of geological interest (as well as traces of associated industries and other antiquities) are marked, as described below.

The topography of the parts of Carman Muir to the south of Cardross Road is determined to a large extent by cornstone deposits, which outcrop in places. Cornstone is an impure granular limestone, a fossil soil. Old quarry pits (probably worked before the nineteenth century) and possible test pits can be seen along the lines of these deposits; they are indicated by light blue marker pins on the annotated satellite view, and the cornstone outcrops are marked by orange pins.

This area, lying to the south of Cardross Road, exemplifies what the British Geological Survey refers to as the Kinnesswood Formation (see LinkExternal link at the BGS website for more information); this formation contains cornstone deposits.

Beside and to the north of Cardross Road are outcrops of sandstone rather than cornstone. The sandstone is best seen along a line of outcrops and pits beside the road (these are indicated by reddish marker pins on the annotated satellite view). Another prominent example lies at the ENE end of that line: a large disused red sandstone quarry, the old Fairy Knowe Quarry (later known as Carman Quarry) LinkExternal link at NS36967900. This area beside and to the north of the road exemplifies the Stockiemuir Sandstone Formation (see LinkExternal link at the BGS website for further details).

Both north and south of the road, the strata in this area generally dip at an angle of from 10 to 20 from the horizontal, descending towards the SSE; the Stockiemuir Sandstone Formation that is exposed beside and to the north of the road underlies the cornstone-containing Kinnesswood Formation to the south of the road.

The annotated satellite view also includes markers for various antiquities in the area:

● Ancient cairns: LinkExternal link
● Circular enclosure: LinkExternal link (originally reported as a hut circle)
● Carman (house): LinkExternal link
● Carman (enclosure): LinkExternal link
● Carman (field system): LinkExternal link

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Grid Square
NS3778, 210 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Wednesday, 18 March, 2015   (more nearby)
Thursday, 2 April, 2015
Geographical Context
Quarrying, Mining  Derelict, Disused  Moorland 
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NS 3758 7846 [10m precision]
WGS84: 55:58.2947N 4:36.2492W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NS 3758 7846
View Direction
East-northeast (about 67 degrees)
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Image classification(about): Geograph
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