Saints and Stones: South Yarrows Broch

Immediately beside the Loch of Yarrows reservoir, at the bottom of the field below South Yarrows Farm, stands the ruins of one of the most beautifully located brochs in Caithness: South Yarrows Broch.

The broch walls reach some 6-1/2 feet (2 meters), higher in places, and one can clearly see the passages and stairs built within the thickness of the walls. The interior diameter is some 13+ feet (4 meters). The tumbledown stonework is partly covered with grass, but there is no mistaking that these are the remains of an iron-age broch. Thought to date to between 200 BC and 200 AD, the broch would have been much taller originally.

The broch itself has two entrances, which is very unusual. The main entrance still has its door lintel in place, and there is a small guard chamber to one side. It is thought that the entrance facing the loch was originally built into the broch and the entrance in the south wall pushed through after the settlement outbuildings were added. Surrounding the broch are obvious remains of aisled buildings called wags. These were built in the later, Pictish era, and consist of a sunken floor, with upright stones holding a roof in place.

About the South Yarrows Broch

Ancient Scotland: South Yarrows Broch
Megalithic Portal:South Yarrows Broch
The Modern Antiquarian: South Yarrows Broch
Canmore: Yarrows Broch
Britain Express: Yarrows Archaeological Trail

Journey to the South Yarrows Broch

The broch marks the start of the Yarrows Archaeological Trail near the Loch of Yarrows Reservoir. There is a dedicated car park on the left of the minor road before reaching South Yarrows, with an information board here giving some details about the walk. Begin by going through the small gate from the far corner, soon following a fence towards the Loch. Pass left of a farm gate to reach the shores, then turn right to cross a stile. After passing through a kissing gate, the Yarrows broch is reached beside the loch.

Streetmap UK NGR ND3046343195 .

Visitors Information

Visitors information for the South Yarrows Broch may be found at the Caithness Broch Project website. General tourist information for the area may be found on the Visit Scotland: Caithness and North Coast Sutherland Area website.

Additional Photos of the South Yarrows Broch

Road Sign for South Yarrows Broch
South Yarrows Broch in the Distance
Approaching South Yarrows Broch
Descriptive Sign for South Yarrows Broch
Approaching the Entrance to South Yarrows Broch
The other entrance in the South Yarrows Broch
The Interior of South Yarrows Broch from Above
The Exit from the Interior of South Yarrows Broch
Close-Up of One of the Exits in South Yarrows Broch
The Back of South Yarrows Broch

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