The Old Man of Storr, Scotland

September 26, 2012


Photographer: Steve Irvine
Summary Author: Steve Irvine

This photograph was taken about 7 mi (12 k) north of the town of Portree on Scotland's Isle of Skye. It shows the highest point of the Trotternish Ridge, known as The Storr. The Trotternish Ridge is the longest geological landslip in Britain, and it exposes a long geological history of volcanic activity. To the right of the cliffs is an area known as the Sanctuary, the remnant of ancient landslips. The tall pinnacle on the right is an area called, The Old Man of Storr, which stands 165 ft (50 m) from base to summit. This area is composed mainly of ancient lava flows. Layering of the different horizontal flows can be seen on the exposed cliff faces. The underlying sedimentary rocks have collapsed under the weight of the dense, volcanic basalt tipping the layers sideways to form this peculiar landslip countryside. Photo taken June 18, 2012.