Friday, 13 August 2010

Culswick Broch and coast

Clare took a day off today, so evil parents that we are we left Beren in nursery to go for a walk with her Dad and Sue. Don't worry he'll be having fun too, we're going on our first kayak camping trip tomorrow!

We drove out west towards Culswick and parked near what, judging by the rank grass around it, must be one of the least used, yet remaining, red phone boxes in the UK. Clare tried it. It was dead.

The track led away up the hill along a track cut deep into the peat in parts and then all of a sudden the broch appeared.

A causeway takes you across a small burn and up to the broch

Looking north towards the island of Vaila. There were some interesting stacks and arches such as Gaada Stacks below

We turned and headed south to wander along the headlands back towards Culswick when Kaptain Kalamity Kev struck. Not only was my left leg still feeling distinctly odd from yesterdays numbing experience, but now on a piece of perfectly flat and smooth sheep mown grass I went and badly turned my 'bad' ankle. I really do feel like a liability at the moment.

The views the rest of the way round were stunning, but now with a couple of miles of ankle twisting terrain I was at the point of giving up all hope. God it was painful getting back to the car and still is.

Anyway the coast was amazing, as ever. Here's a couple of views of Burga Stacks, one with Fitful Head in the distance.

And a few more interesting pointy things...

As we carried on we saw a few more pointy things. I wanted to add more to them but decided to just leave them be as they were. Knowing me with my current luck I'd knock them down!

We passed a head called The Nev on the O.S. with a very deep and inviting gjo

The caves in the gjo headed through the next headland to a beautiful little cove with the remains of a watermill, noosts (boat shelter) and some other buildings, so we rested there a bit.

 The Mill remains

A noost and the cove

We also got a great view of Giltarump, a small island/stack off another headland called The Nev that Clare and I had previously kayaked near on a trip from Westerwick.

The weather had been pretty Shetlandic all morning with sun, cloud and rain in a random combinations and just after we got here it decided to rain just that bit heavier. What with the rain, the steeply angled terrain and my ankle making me feel ill I put my camera away to concentrate on getting back to the car without further trauma.

Thankfully not much later we were safely sat in Bonhoga Gallery again where I happily sampled their cakes to aid my recovery.

Now Clare, her Dad and Sue are out at Hillswick at a fiddle frenzy concert and dance, I'm here and Beren's in bed. The plan for the weekend is a short paddle to Vementry for a nights camping and exploring the island, though I'll be taking a book not my hiking boots!


  1. Love the pics Kev.
    I've never seen that bit of coast before.


  2. Cheers :o)

    It's well worth the stroll round