Land of stone

The beach at Dunnet surprised me with its angular stones. I'm used to the smooth, rounded stones of the east coast beaches. In the almost tree-less landscape of Caithness the bones of the earth were much more evident than in the Lowlands.

Stone fences made from upright slabs were everywhere. When I got out of the car to take this photo I was met by the unmistakable and - if you've grown up in the Scottish countryside - comforting smell of sheep.

These fences were a surprise to me. I had taken photos of stone fences in the foothills of the French Pyrenees this summer, little thinking that they also existed in Scotland.

The stone dykes (walls) were of a different construction to the chunky construction that I know. In Caithness they're made from horizontal layers of stone slices, and topped with rough semicircles of upright slabs.


  1. That looks like beautiful countryside - I love rocky beaches as long as I'm not barefoot. I've never seen fences like that.

  2. Beautiful. I love seeing your photos of the city and countryside. Angular stones huh? I'm used to pure sand! Stones would make for a nice scenic beach but I'm not sure if I'd want to go swimming there.... especially if the stones are angular! Yikes. Hope you're having a lovely day!

  3. I love stone walls and fences! We don't really have that many in Canada, bu I know for a fact that my great-great-grandfather and his brother built one in Ireland, it's a story that I always love hearing from my Grandmother :o)

  4. When you grow up in the United States of America after the invention of barbed wire, you tend to forget that fences can be constructed of other material. Well, there's picket fences, but they go around houses, not farms. These stone walls are cool.

  5. Cool stone fences. They are works of art.

  6. Beautiful pictures of the stones that I have not seen before.

  7. Never quite trust drystone walls.
    It only takes one lorry...
    I suppose those you show are free from traffic, other than sheep and hikers.

  8. Wonderful study of those lovely stone walls...I loved the stone walls in Ireland and throughout Europe...

    Yes, not a sight one often sees here in the US...although I did see sheep herds on my way to Bodie State Historical Park!!!

  9. Those stone walls are beautiful aren't they and surprisingly difficult to replicate lol. The ones I have made will not be standing in 100 years time like the one you pictured will be.
    The fence made from those caithness slabs amazed me when we first moved here, I never would have thought to do such a thing and yet they look so neat and tidy - plus they'll last for many years.
    I'm glad you enjoyed the scenery we have here



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