by Charles Gulick
The Chalk Giants
1. White Horse of Uffington
Chart: Southern UK
Title: UFFINGTON HORSE
En Route Coordinates:
Aircraft: N18756, E13369
The four giant chalk figures featured in the U.K. simulation are representative of nearly 20 that are found on the English countryside. Some are from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, but a few are much more ancient. Little is known of any of them, except that men carved them by cutting deeply into the ground until they reached the underlying chalk surface. The ancient mythical figures may have religious significance, and the more recent ones simply may be imitative of the idea of the ancients.
The White Horse of Uffington is believed by antiquarians to date from the first century B.C., in part because its shape resembles that of horses shown on Celtic coins minted in that era. Longer than a football field, the horse stretches 360 feet across a hillside in Wessex Downs, southwest of Oxford.
If this and the other figures were not carefully tended, they would soon be overgrown and hidden by vegetation. But the local villagers keep the areas and gouges clean, and scour the chalk regularly.
In all four chalk-giant scenarios, you are positioned at the ideal altitude for studying the figures using the straight-down (ground) view from the cockpit as you fly over. Use Pause to study the figures.