|Visited: August 24, 2016
It's little surprise that no mention has previously been made of Dùn Kraiknish on this site as it is probably the most remote stone fort on the Isle of Skye. From the start of the Glen Brittle Forest Trail at Grulla, near the northeast shore of Loch Eynort (blue marker), the round trip to the dùn is 17.5 kilometres (11 miles). The walking is excellent, however, with a metalled forestry road for most of the distance (as far as the summit of Cnoc an Teine, just a kilometre short of your goal).
From here, Dùn Kraiknish lies a further kilometre to the northwest, but cannot be seen from this location. The final walk to the dùn is overland, across springy grass dotted with heather and bog myrtle. You can simply pick your own way since faint tracks - if any - are hard to find. There are no hidden tussocks to trip you nor bogs to ensnare you: this is one of the most gentle and enjoyable walks anywhere. Dùn Kraiknish is indicated by the red marker, but you will not see it until you are within a hundred metres or so as it is shielded by a steep rise to its east.
The metalled path, as far as the summit of Cnoc an Teine (about 90 metres elevation), is indicated on the map below by the yellow line.
Beware the OS Map, however: Sheet 32 (South Skye & Cuillin Hills) indicates a split in the track, with the western branch hugging the coast, effectively a short-cut to Kraiknish Farm. I can confirm that this track has long ago been totally consumed by the forest, and that no remnant of it exists today. The forest is well-nigh impenetrable making a short-cut impossible now. Consequently, you must follow a loop in the main track, first east, to gain the bridge over the Allt Dabhoch (stream) then west towards Kraiknish Farm (yellow marker).
At length, you reach the forest edge and arrive at a gate labelled 'Kraiknish Farm'. Although sheep still graze on the hillsides and you will pass sheep pens on your way, Kraiknish Farm is no more. All that remains, partly obscured in a clump of trees 150 metres to the west of the gate, are the low ruins of some stone-built farm buildings—under a metre in height—and a prominent chimney breast that defiantly braves the elements to this day.
Dùn Kraiknish itself stands on a level, grass-covered promontory on the western coast of the peninsula and is protected by undercut 16-metre high cliffs. It measures approximately 18 by 16 metres, and is defended by a stone wall at least three metres wide along its landward side. Considerable stretches of neat walling still remain, up to eight courses on the exterior wall south of the entrance and seven courses on the internal wall to the north. The entrance sits part-way along on the eastern flank of the dun and measures 1½ metres in width. The passage, can be followed through the wall, though partly obscured by tumble.
Inside the dun wall is a level grassy area from which the walling on the seaward side has almost totally disappeared over time.
Some 200 metres northeast of the dun are the remains of a township (Laimhrig Na Moine), ruined since becoming deserted during the Clearances of the mid 19th century. It is highly likely that Dùn Kraiknish was extensively robbed in order to construct the township.
You can read more about this fort on Canmore.
Posted by LesHamilton
28th August 2016ce
Edited 25th September 2016ce