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Yesnaby Cliffs

Stromness Category Nature & Wildlife, Historic Sites
Yesnaby Cliffs image

Few localities combine the wealth of geological interest with the stunning setting of Yesnaby. As the swell crashes in from the Atlantic, the cliffs resonate with the blows and the compression of air in hidden caves bubbles air through ponds high on the cliff top. The modern pulse of erosion has exposed a far older history, for here is laid out the desert of the Devonian.

The cliff feels the full force of Atlantic storms when spray jets high into the air. Waves arrive here unchanged from the deep ocean and during storms the cliff top is washed, shifting blocks landwards and scouring away the soil. All the classic landforms of coastal erosion are revealed on a walk on the cliff tops caves, arches and stacks.

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