Stormy Seas, Caithness

With the first strong northerly winds of the autumn, the weekend of 28-29th October was fairly stormy for the North coast of Scotland. With a strong northerly, the swell in the North Atlantic builds quickly and pounds the coast.

A few miles west of Thurso lies the headland of Brims Ness and the subsidiary Ushat Head. Brims Ness is a well known surfing spot. Near Ushat Head seaward dipping Caithness Flagstone strata aid the formation of impressive waves breaking direct on to the sloping rock shelf.

Photo of the Atlantic surging on to Caithness Flagstone rocks near Ushat Head, Crosskirk
The Atlantic surges on to Caithness Flagstone rocks near Ushat Head, Crosskirk

To the west of Ushat Head lies Crosskirk Bay with the ruined St Mary’s Chapel. This is backed by a former US Naval communications base at Forss. The site is now used for office space to support nearby Dounreay and several wind turbines have also been erected.

In the afternoon the light improved as the sun descended in the south west and rays streamed through breaks in the cloud in the direction of Sandside Bay.

Photo of a stormy Atlantic Ocean crashing over the rocks near Ushat Head at Crosskirk, Caithness on Sunday 29th October 2017
A stormy Atlantic Ocean crashing over the rocks near Ushat Head at Crosskirk, Caithness on Sunday 29th October 2017
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