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The Great Stone Transportation Hoax


This essay series culminates in a comprehensive analysis of the origins and transportation methods of the stones used at Stonehenge. It features the first detailed LiDAR maps of the areas surrounding the stone sources, enriched by references to research that helped in their identification. These maps critically assess whether the stone sites are situated near ancient roads or along the margins of paleochannels, which are old waterways. The analysis strongly suggests that these waterways were likely the sole means of transporting the stones from their original locations to the previously identified mooring points at Stonehenge. Intriguingly, these mooring points have, until now, been largely overlooked by archaeologists. This conclusion not only underscores the significance of integrating technological advancements like LiDAR into archaeological research but also challenges long-held assumptions about prehistoric engineering capabilities and the ingenuity of our ancestors. (The Stone Transportation Hoax)

(The Stone Transportation Hoax)
Sarsen Stone Identified Locations for Stonehenge

Geochemical fingerprinting

Geochemical fingerprinting has emerged as a pivotal technique in discovering the origins of the Sarsen stones used in Stonehenge. Led by Professor David Nash, an expert in geochemical sediments and environmental change, a collaborative team including Dr. Jake Ciborowski, Dr. Georgios Maniatis, and renowned archaeologists and heritage specialists such as Professor Timothy Darvill, Professor Mike Parker Pearson, Susan Greaney, and Katy Whitaker, embarked on this groundbreaking research.

The process of geochemical fingerprinting involves matching the elemental chemistry of a stone artefact with that of potential source areas. For Stonehenge, this necessitated a two-stage approach. First, the team conducted an initial analysis of the sarsen stones directly at the monument. Subsequently, they performed equivalent analyses on sarsen boulders found naturally across a broad area stretching from Devon to Suffolk.

To accurately determine the elemental chemistry of the Stonehenge sarsens, the team employed a portable X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometer (pXRF). This non-invasive tool was used to analyze all 52 of the remaining sarsen stones at Stonehenge, with each stone subjected to six chemical readings. Dr. Georgios Maniatis spearheaded the statistical analyses, which aimed to identify any patterns or clusters within the collected data.

(The Stone Transportation Hoax)
The Great Stone Transportation Hoax 24

This meticulous approach and the use of advanced technology like pXRF underscore the team’s commitment to uncovering the mysteries of Stonehenge with precision and care. Their work stands as a testament to the power of interdisciplinary collaboration in unlocking the secrets of our ancient past. (

The Bluestones – Craig Rhos-y-Felin

Recent advances in ‘Geochemical Footprinting’ analysis have significantly deepened our understanding of where the bluestones used in Stonehenge originated from. However, it’s important to note that this method has its limitations, particularly due to the movement of rocks caused by glacial activity and post-ice age water flows, which complicates tracking their origins. Some experts have suggested that instead of being quarried and brought from Wales, the Bluestones at Stonehenge might have been deposited in the area by glaciers. But this hypothesis clashes with geological evidence showing that the glaciers from the last ice age didn’t extend to Stonehenge, having stopped near the Bristol Channel. This contradiction casts doubt on the glacier transport theory and points to the possibility that these stones might have been moved by glaciers from an even earlier ice age, like the Anglian, which happened over 500,000 years ago. However, considering such a vast time frame, it’s highly unlikely that stones from this period would be found on the surface today as they would be buried deep under layers of soil accumulated over thousands of years.

(The Stone Transportation Hoax)
This profile map shows the type of landscape faced by any person wishing to take stones overland to Stonehenge

Additionally, the absence of bluestone erratics (rocks that differ from the size and type of rocks native to the area in which they rest) near Stonehenge further questions the glacier transport idea. The quarry site at Craig Rhos-Y-Felin has been identified as a bluestone source and shows unmistakable signs of ancient human quarrying activities. This evidence directly challenges the notion that the bluestones were simply picked up from places where glaciers left them. The discovery of ancient hearths and quarrying tools, and even a partially quarried bluestone at Craig Rhos-Y-Felin, strongly indicates that these stones were deliberately chosen and transported to Stonehenge. This revelation not only informs us about the methods used by the people who built Stonehenge but also about their ability to organize such a complex logistical operation.

Crig Rhos Felin path to Enland
The overland path from Craig Rhos-y-felin to Stonehenge is insane. It goes from 75m OD to 541 OD and crosses 95 valleys – the idea that you can either roll, drag or ox-cart such a route without a road is bonkers!!

LiDAR Survey

The detailed examination of the Craig Rhos-y-felin quarry, identified over the past decade as the source of Stonehenge’s bluestones, has brought new insights into how these stones might have been transported. Through maps and videos, we can see that in prehistoric times, this quarry was situated along the banks of a large river. Interestingly, there is no evidence of a direct trackway or path leading from the quarry towards England and Stonehenge. The only apparent ancient modification to the surrounding landscape is found to the west, with a road leading towards the coast, which is in the opposite direction of Stonehenge.

Craig Rhos-y-felin – Note that it is on the shoreline of a great river of the past probably full when the quarry was working in the Mesolithic Period

This observation leads to the speculation that perhaps this road was used to transport the stones to the coast, from where they could have been shipped around the coast to the River Avon. However, this theory raises questions about its practicality, given that the quarry itself is already located on a river. It would arguably have been easier and more logical to transport the stones directly downriver by boat from the quarry.

Criag Rhos y felin 2
The only route overland is going West the Road (7-miles) going NE goes to Aberywstyth in Mid-Wales

If this coastal route was utilised in the past, it might suggest that it was a contingency plan, possibly adopted during periods when the river’s water level was too low to support the transportation of heavy loads like the 4-tonne bluestones. This hypothesis points to a level of adaptability and resourcefulness in our prehistoric ancestors, demonstrating their ability to modify their strategies in response to environmental challenges. It also underscores the importance of considering the dynamic nature of ancient landscapes and waterways when studying prehistoric transportation methods.

Criag Rhos y felin
The only possible signs of stones coming out of the Quarry (not by boat) is going West – to the Coast

The Sarsen Stones

The mystery surrounding the origin and transportation of the sarsen stones used in Stonehenge is indeed complex and intriguing. These stones are widely dispersed across the Salisbury Plain and beyond, in regions that were not covered by ice sheets during the last Ice Age. This distribution pattern challenges the notion that they were moved by glacial activities.

Stonehenge stones
The Great Stone Transportation Hoax 25

A prevalent theory posits that the sarsen stones originated from West Woods near Avebury, implying that they were manually transported to Stonehenge. However, recent observations have cast doubt on this theory. Many of the sarsen stones are found within paleochannel riverbeds, as opposed to being in rock outcrops. Paleochannels are the remnants of ancient rivers or streams that have since become dry or extinct. The presence of sarsen stones in these old riverbeds suggests a different narrative for their movement.

The implication is that these stones were likely carried by floodwaters during the Ice Age, rather than being manually quarried and dragged from nearby sources. This natural transportation method would have been quite powerful, as meltwater from retreating glaciers could move large stones considerable distances. This theory aligns with the geological and hydrological dynamics of the post-glacial landscape.

Stonehenge saersen stones
This map shows that picking just the nearest Sarsen stone was not required and clearly had purpose – this suggest a structural or property requirement

Understanding this potential mode of transportation helps in piecing together the prehistoric landscape of the region. It highlights the role of natural forces in shaping the environment and potentially assisting ancient peoples in their monumental architectural endeavors, such as the construction of Stonehenge. As research continues, our understanding of these processes and the ingenuity of ancient cultures in utilizing their environment will undoubtedly evolve.

ACS Great Map
AC Smith most detailed Avebury map shows that all sarsens are found in Dry River Valleys (Paleochannels)

West Woods – Wiltshire (23.2 km)

The traditional narrative suggesting that all the Sarsen stones used in Stonehenge came from a single location, specifically West Woods, has indeed been a subject of debate and reevaluation in recent years. This theory, which fits a simpler narrative of ancient people physically dragging massive stones across the landscape, has been popular partly because it aligns with the image of prehistoric societies as ‘hunter-gatherers’ – presumed to be primitive and motivated by superstitious or ceremonial reasons that modern understanding struggles to grasp.

Stonehenge to west wood
The Great Stone Transportation Hoax 26

However, this perspective underestimates the sophistication and capabilities of these ancient people. The construction of monumental structures such as Stonehenge, Avebury, and Woodhenge attests to a significant level of knowledge and skill in engineering and construction. These achievements were not replicated until the arrival of the Romans, who introduced similar levels of engineering expertise, including advanced boat building techniques.

map k large
The AC Smiths West Wood Sarsens are scattered from their max location down the Paleochannels to Wansdyke

Recent research and discoveries suggest that the transportation and construction methods used by these prehistoric societies were far more advanced than previously thought. The precise alignment of stones in these structures indicates a deep understanding of astronomy, geometry, and physical engineering. Additionally, the widespread distribution of the Sarsen stones and their presence in paleochannel riverbeds suggest that these societies might have utilised natural forces and waterways, hinting at a sophisticated understanding of their environment.

This growing body of evidence challenges the simplistic narrative of these ancient peoples as merely ‘simple-minded’ or solely driven by superstition. It opens up a broader perspective of their societies as innovative, resourceful, and capable of complex planning and execution. Acknowledging this complexity not only gives a more accurate representation of their abilities but also provides a richer understanding of human history and the development of technology and knowledge over time.

West Woods to Stonehenge
Even the shortest route known to transport these stones is through with difficulty, as the 12 valleys and 14 peaks shown on this map testify.


Coincidences in archaeology can be quite fascinating, often leading to new insights or unexpected connections between different sites and historical periods. The case of West Woods, identified as the source of most of the Sarsen stones used in Stonehenge, intersecting with the ancient earthwork of Wansdyke, which you have extensively researched and proposed to be a canal, is a prime example.

Such intersections are not just mere coincidences but can provide valuable information about the landscape’s use and significance across different periods. If West Woods was the source of the Sarsen stones, it suggests that the area held considerable importance for the people who built Stonehenge. Research into Wansdyke as a canal adds another layer to this, indicating that the area might have been a significant hub of activity, perhaps even a transportation route in prehistoric times.

3D Book Template wansdyke edited 1

The discovery of the origin of the Sarsen stones at West Woods and its proximity to Wansdyke can offer insights into the logistics of transporting these massive stones. If Wansdyke was indeed a canal or part of a waterway system, it might have been used to facilitate the movement of these stones. This would align with theories suggesting that waterways played a crucial role in the transportation of megaliths.

Such findings are a testament to the complex and sophisticated nature of prehistoric societies. They challenge our understanding of these cultures and encourage a deeper exploration of their technological capabilities and interactions with their environment. Your work and similar research in archaeology are crucial in piecing together these intricate historical puzzles, offering a more nuanced view of our ancestors’ lives and achievements.

Wansdyke WATER edited 1
Wansdyke has now been proven to be Prehistoric in date – so was it built to transport these stones?

The LiDAR maps shows that there are no roads going south to take these stones by either rolling, sledging or ox-carting. Ths Lidar map also shows in addition as route for stones to Avebury either by Wansdyke or the Kennet to the North.

Bramdean – Hampshire (53.3 km)

The discovery of a new archaeological site at Bramdean is indeed intriguing, especially considering the etymology of the name ‘Bramdean,’ which is indicative of a dry river valley or a paleochannel. Such geological features are significant as they often hint at a landscape once rich in waterways, which is crucial for understanding ancient transportation methods.

Stonehenge to Bramdean
The Great Stone Transportation Hoax 27

The presence of a large Sarsen stone, similar to the 50-tonne trilithons of Stonehenge, at this site raises important questions about how such massive stones were moved. The sheer size and weight of these stones would have indeed posed a considerable challenge to ancient transportation methods. As you pointed out, the logistics of moving such a stone using sledges or rolling them on tree trunks seem impractical, if not impossible, without sinking or breaking the sledges. Moreover, the technology for a cart capable of handling such weight was not developed until the Roman period, suggesting that these stones were likely transported by water.

We have added the water levels at the time of Stonenehge construction to addd visability and direction of boat travel (towards Stonehenge)

LiDAR maps of the area around Bramdean, particularly near the quarry site at the base of the dean, reinforce this hypothesis. The absence of any roads leading westward from the quarry site to Stonehenge supports the theory that overland transport was not used for these massive stones. Instead, it seems more probable that boats were employed for their transportation, utilizing the ancient waterways that once defined the landscape. The discovery that the quarry site at Bramdean was also used for a local stone circle at a later date adds another layer of historical significance to the area. It indicates that this site was not only a source of materials for Stonehenge but also held local importance for the construction of other megalithic structures.

This new site at Bramdean, therefore, offers valuable insights into the prehistoric landscape and the methods used by ancient peoples in their monumental construction projects. It highlights the importance of considering the natural environment and the technological capabilities of these societies in our archaeological interpretations.

Ditchling – East Sussex (127 km)

The logistics of transporting stones to Stonehenge indeed present extraordinary lengths and complexities. The journey of the bluestones, spanning approximately 220 km, is particularly notable. Their value and uniqueness, attributed to their specific properties (as detailed in this blog Prehistoric Britain), make their transportation a subject of significant interest. While Bluestones are recognised for their distinct qualities, the widespread distribution of Sarsen stones challenges the assumption that they were merely chosen for their physical suitability for construction. This raises the question of whether there was more selective criteria involved in their sourcing.

Stonehenge to Ditchling
The Great Stone Transportation Hoax 28

One aspect that remains under-discussed in academic circles is the method by which these stones were identified and selected for transportation. If we adhere to the ‘hunter-gatherer’ model, it would imply that groups of people roamed vast areas in search of specific stones. This leads to several questions: Were there multiple groups involved in this search? If so, how did they communicate their findings to each other, and how did they navigate back to Stonehenge without established pathways?

The traditional notion of on-foot exploration and gathering of stones encounters significant logistical challenges, particularly regarding navigation and coordination. However, the use of waterways and boat transport offers a more plausible solution. Rivers provide natural pathways with restricted access and direction, making it relatively easier to return to the starting point of the journey. From my own investigations, it’s evident that prehistoric people utilised markers, such as Long Barrows, placed on edges and high horizons. These served as simple navigational aids, a feature that overland travel lacked until the advent of signposts.

This understanding suggests that water transport was not only a practical choice for moving the stones but also a means of overcoming the challenges of navigation and coordination. The use of natural waterways and strategically placed markers would have greatly facilitated the transportation process, showcasing the ingenuity and resourcefulness of the people involved in the construction of Stonehenge. Such insights continue to reshape our understanding of prehistoric societies, revealing a level of sophistication and planning that goes beyond the simplistic narratives often associated with ‘hunter-gatherer’ cultures.

Ditchling to Stoneenge
The Great Stone Transportation Hoax 29


LiDAR map reveals that there is no sign of any road that could have taken this Sarsen stone west to Wiltshire or Stonehenge, instead this stone is found again in a Paleochannel which suggest that it went south and then west along the coast to the River Avon then Stonehenge.

The Altar Stone – Northwern England maybe even Scotland (min 367 km + )

The case of the Altar Stone at Stonehenge and the findings at Mesolithic sites like Blick Mead indeed present intriguing archaeological paradoxes. The Altar Stone’s distinct geological makeup, differing from the other Sarsen stones, has led to a long-standing belief that it originated from Wales or Devon. Recent insights, however, suggest its origins might be as far north as Scotland. This uncertainty reflects the challenges faced in geology and archaeology, particularly due to limited funding and the slow pace of rock sampling. It highlights a significant gap in our understanding of prehistoric stone sourcing and transportation.

Stonehenge to altar stone
The Great Stone Transportation Hoax 30

The discovery that cattle bones found at Blick Mead, near Stonehenge, likely originated from Northern England or Scotland adds to this complexity. The traditional explanation that these animals were herded over 350 km is overly simplistic and neglects to consider the practical challenges of such a journey. This situation underscores a broader issue in archaeology: the tendency to rely on conjecture in the absence of concrete evidence and a reluctance to revise long-standing theories.

The suggestion that boats were used for transportation during this period challenges the prevailing academic notion that significant boat usage did not emerge until the Bronze Age. Acknowledging the use of boats in the Mesolithic period would necessitate a reevaluation of the understanding of prehistoric societies, particularly the categorization of these populations as solely ‘hunter-gatherers.’ Such an admission implies a more advanced level of technological and navigational knowledge than previously attributed to these early societies.

The resistance to integrating the idea of boat transportation into the narrative of prehistoric Britain reflects a broader issue within academia: the challenge of reconciling new empirical evidence with established theories and classifications. As more evidence emerges, there may be a growing need to reassess and potentially redefine our understanding of early human societies, their capabilities, and their technological advancements.


As we do not have an exact location we can not look around the site to see for signs of roads – what is very evident is that there is no road over 335 km going to Stonehenge.

Theories of Transportation

The theory that the stones could have been moved over frozen rivers during the ice age is intriguing but fraught with logistical issues. The absence of a significant human population capable of organising such an endeavour, coupled with the challenges of moving heavy stones over potentially thin ice, makes this theory less plausible. Additionally, the radiocarbon dating of Stonehenge would be significantly off if the stones had been transported at the end of the ice age.

LiDAR, or Light Detection and Ranging, is a remote sensing technology that uses laser light to densely sample the earth’s surface, creating highly accurate topographic maps. It has revolutionised archaeological surveys by uncovering features difficult or impossible to see from the ground or through traditional surveying methods. Regarding Stonehenge and the transportation of the stones used in its construction, LiDAR technology offers invaluable insights into the landscape and potential transport routes used by ancient peoples.

Stonehenge Avuenue LiDAR picture
There is only one road out of Stonenege and that goes down to Stonehenge bottom were the Avon used to flow

LiDAR Evidence and Stonehenge

LiDAR has been instrumental in mapping the landscape around Stonehenge, revealing details that have remained hidden for millennia under vegetation or soil. This technology has the potential to identify old riverbeds, trackways, and other features that could suggest routes for transporting the massive sarsen stones and bluestones used in the monument’s construction. However, despite its capabilities, LiDAR has not yet provided definitive evidence of prehistoric roads or paths leading directly from the quarries to Stonehenge.

Key Findings from LiDAR Surveys

No Prehistoric Roads from Quarries: LiDAR surveys have not discovered any signs of engineered roads or paths originating from the bluestone quarries in Wales or the locations where sarsen stones are found. This absence challenges theories that rely on overland transportation of the stones using rollers, sledges, or ox-carts across vast distances and rugged terrains.

Ancient Waterways and Paleochannels: One significant contribution of LiDAR is the identification of ancient waterways and paleochannels. These features are crucial for understanding the prehistoric landscape, suggesting that rivers and watercourses could have played a significant role in the transportation of the stones. The larger rivers identified by LiDAR, which would have been navigable in the past, support the theory that water transport was a feasible and preferred method for moving the stones.

Atkinson's Method
Atkinson proved with just four small school boys that 4-tonne stone can easily be moved by boat down to the river Avon

Landscape Features: LiDAR has revealed the complexity of the landscape through which any transportation route would have had to navigate, including valleys, dense forests, and waterlogged areas. This detailed mapping underscores the logistical challenges faced by ancient builders, further questioning the practicality of solely land-based transport methods.

We have now found empirical evidence of boat yards in which catamaran design is made to carry large weights in Wales dating back to the Bronze Age and beyond

Implications of LiDAR Evidence

The evidence from LiDAR surveys, particularly the absence of prehistoric roads and the emphasis on natural watercourses, suggests a revaluation of how the stones were transported to Stonehenge. The lack of direct routes from quarries to the site and the identification of navigable ancient rivers and paleochannels lend weight to theories prioritising water transport. This perspective aligns with the understanding that ancient peoples were highly adept at utilising their natural environment to achieve monumental feats of construction.

Alter Stone to Stonehenge
The Altar Stone is now suspected of coming from as far as Scotland as its Geo signature is not available down south (I would guess Doggerland for obvious reasons) but even if it just came from the Yorkshire Dales the idea of l, and transportation is pure nonsense

Further Reading

For information about British Prehistory, visit for the most extensive archaeology blogs and investigations collection, including modern LiDAR reports.  This site also includes extracts and articles from the Robert John Langdon Trilogy about Britain in the Prehistoric period, including titles such as The Stonehenge Enigma, Dawn of the Lost Civilisation and the ultimate proof of Post Glacial Flooding and the landscape we see today.

Robert John Langdon has also created a YouTube web channel with over 100 investigations and video documentaries to support his classic trilogy (Prehistoric Britain). He has also released a collection of strange coincidences that he calls ‘13 Things that Don’t Make Sense in History’ and his recent discovery of a lost Stone Avenue at Avebury in Wiltshire called ‘Silbury Avenue – the Lost Stone Avenue’.

Langdon has also produced a series of ‘shorts’, which are extracts from his main body of books:

The Ancient Mariners

Stonehenge Built 8300 BCE

Old Sarum

Prehistoric Rivers

Dykes ditches and Earthworks

Echoes of Atlantis

Homo Superior

For active discussions on the findings of the TRILOGY and recent LiDAR investigations that are published on our WEBSITE, you can join our and leave a message or join the debate on our Facebook Group.

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