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Isle of Skye Geology, Scotland

Friday, November 20, 2009

This evening, I have decided to read up on the geology of Skye. I am a frequent visitor to Skye with my private tours and think its time to learn about the fascinating and diverse landforms of which Skye is comprised.

Skye is the largest of the Inner Hebrides. As regards the geology:

  • Shape of the island is very irregular with numerous long peninsulas separated by sea lochs.
  • Comprised of Tertiary igneous rocks except for Sleat which is pre-Cambrian.
  • Broadford Bay eats into Jurassic shales and sandstones but the higher ground to south of Broadford is volcanic.
  • Skye best know for the Cuillin hills which consist mainly of gabbro with some dolerite. These hills are very rugged with erosion contributing to gullies and notches. The Cuillins are a fine examples of glacial landform. Typical height is 3000ft (900m)
  • The Red Hills consist mainly of granite and granophyre. Typical height is 2000-2500 ft.
  • The Cuillins and Red Hills were a major form of ice accumulation in the last ice age.
  • The northern two thirds of Skye (apart from the eastern and northern segments of Trotternish) consist mainly of plateau lavas which cover over 400 square miles.They feature table topped hills which are terraced as a result of erosion of lava flows.
  • At Trotternish can be found excellent examples of of land slips where spectacular scenery has resulted from the slippage of great masses of basalt over underlying Jurassic sediments.
The more visits I make to Skye the more I realise just how much there is to learn about this intriguing island.

Video no 1 shows the Quiraing north of the Trotternish area.
Video no 2 shows the Cuillins
Video no 3 shows the view from Torridon looking towards Loch Slapin
Video no 4 shows the view from Elgol and the Cuillins
Video no 5 is a view at the centre of Skye.

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posted by Catswhiskers @ 12:46 PM 


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