Sunday, 26 June 2011

Boreray, sheer impact

We rounded the impressive Stac an Armin and got our first clear view of the west coast of Boreray

Nothing really prepares you for getting close to Boreray (The Fortress Island).  The cliffs soar straight out of the sea to a height of 384 metres, studded with towers and pinnacles.

This side of the island looks impregnable, but the St Kildans often visited, landing on a sloping slab on the eastern side.  As on the Stacs they harvested birds for meat, oil and feathers but here on Boreray they also kept some sheep.  These animals were quite distinct from the sheep kept on Hirta, being origially Scottish Tan Face and then crossed with Hebridean Black face animals.  The St Kildans plucked wool from them and took some animals back to Hirta; these were thrown into the sea and picked up for transport!

Murdani has expert knowledge of the waters around Boreray, he piloted Cuma through a gap between Stac an Armin and Boreray guarded by two small but rugged stacks and took her close in to these mighty cliffs.

Very close in! This tower is the left hand one in the second photograph.  Here too the air teemed with Gannets and Fulmars, the two metre wingspan Gannets were brilliant white specks around the upper part of the island.  We were stunned into silence by the epic scale of this place.

The sheer impact of Boreray is hard to describe and it's difficult to portray in pictures, but what an experience!


  1. Absolutely stunning! It's a place I dream of getting to.

  2. Thanks Iain, it's a truly wonderful place. You need luck to get the weather (which we had) but it's well worth the effort!

    PS having difficulty commenting to your blog - perhaps Blogger is playing up again?

    Kind regards