August 8, 2019

Building the North Copse

    Our Pennsylvania quarry came through for us and after two more deliveries we now have enough of the very special stone required to begin construction of the North Copse.
    And what is the North Copse you ask? With The Great North Stone as it's northernmost minor axis, the Copse is a 45'x30' ellipse set with the stones almost touching. Intended to create a sanctuary within a sanctuary, very much in keeping with the "Fore Courts" associated with British neolithic long barrows.


     In order to follow the very tight curves of such a small ellipse, we need stones no wider than 4 feet, and hopefully in the 12 foot range in height, and all of the same beige colored sandstone of The Great North Stone. Such stones are not easy to find, even when our good quarry-men are setting their blasting charges just for us. So part of this years Stones Rising involves the trimming of our stony friends to fit into such a narrow envelope.

The pair of length-wise split, book matched stones. Showing their interior colors for the first time in millions of years.

    But in a bit of luck, last year we found a wonderful slab that had a natural bedding plane running lengthwise with the rock. This spring our quarry-men set upon that slab with wedges and gently coaxed the flaw into a full split, creating two mirror image book-matched slabs of stone, whose faces are actually the interior surfaces of the previous whole slab. And as luck would have it the irregular outlines of the two slabs almost perfectly match the shoulders of the Great North Stone.

StoneChrisScaled drawing with image overlay of book matched stones, and the Great North Stone



    We have rough cut two other slabs that will flank these book-matched stones, their final trim and dressing will wait for Stones Rising.
    And of the Rising, we have a very challenging task ahead. The space within the copse is very tight, and we intend to set these stones no more than a hands width apart. So careful planning is called for, the rigging will be complicated, and we will need everyone in boots and gloves... no by-standers allowed!

           Tink!...   And one stone becomes two!

 StoneMonsterStone22 feet long and 20,000 pounds. It's a monster stone!

    And for the future the quarry has us in mind. It takes a lot of stones to fill up three 55 foot tractor trailers, and a crane to unload them once they arrive at Four Quarters. Our quarry has opened a new vein of stone and it is producing the largest stone we have ever seen.
    On our last visit we were introduced to a 22 foot long, 6 foot wide monster of a stone, weighing in at 20,000 pounds! To put that in comparison, the Great western Stone came in at 14,000 pounds. These stones are being set aside and will be used to flank the North Copse when completed in a few years... and we return to building the the Main Circle. Plenty of work yet to come.

Four Quarters