With only 4 days on the Isle of Skye it was tough to narrow down which trails we wanted to spend our time on but in the end we made our choices and this one in particular was my favourite. Hiking the Storr was not only visually incredible but it alerted all our senses; we were challenged right until the end. During the 4 hour climb we had golden hour, a fog out, a snow blizzard and rain but irrelevant of how tricky it sounds, we were still blown away (ha pun intended!).
Why The Storr?
The Old Man Of Storr is an iconic short walk and scenic lookout on the Isle of Skye and one we couldn’t miss. Just north of Portree the road arcs beneath an ancient landslide which has left behind numerous incredible jagged shards protruding from the earth in what is now known as the Sanctuary. The tallest and most prominent of the ‘shards’ is called The Old Man of Storr. A walk up to the Sanctuary takes roughly 40 minutes or you can make another option. We packed a lunch, rugged up and opted to take the scenic route which winds it’s way past the Sanctuary and around the back to an aerial viewpoint of the entire scene. This route is known as ‘The Storr’. We chose this hike because it encompassed the classic must-see ‘The Old Man of Storr’ with the addition of incredible views over the wide escarpment and much further. A quick google image search (our lifeline for travel ha!) confirmed what we thought, that hiking The Storr was the one to go for!
Insanely good! The sanctuary from below and above was overwhelming. This unique landscape, no matter which angle we viewed it from was as breathtaking as we hoped. The hike initially leads up via the well-trodden ‘Old Man Of Storr’ path to the Old Man himself and the Cathedral Rock. From there the path dramatically narrows and leads up and off to the right around the back of the escarpment swapping the view of the Sanctuary to one of the entire northern coastline of Skye. This is when things got interesting. The ground at this point was covered in snow and the fog was just above our heads and as we made a crucial ascent to the summit things went Boom! The Blizzard and complete fog out was a cheeky hello from the unpredictable Scottish weather! The next 40 minutes was a little testing as we fumbled our way to the summit without a path or a point of reference and I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t say I was relieved to finally see the summit Cairn (stone pillar). The fog and the blizzard cleared as quickly as it came and the views along the Great Cliffs and over the Sanctuary to beyond were worth every little drop of sweat. Soaking up the views for as long as we could, the snow (which further down the trail turned to rain) eventually kicked us off. It came long and hard but nothing could wipe our smiles off our faces, hiking The Storr was invigorating and truly spectacular!
Note: Be Scotland smart and pack for all weather conditions, you don’t know what will happen up there.
Want to do it for yourself? Here are the stats for hiking The Storr
Path?: First 1hr there is a decent path and then it gets a little wild. We recommend using OS maps and a detailed description.
Prue and Becks Difficulty rating: 4/5
Starting point: Type in Google maps ‘The Old Man Of Storr Car Park’ .. it’s that easy!
Looking for more hikes in Scotland like this? We’ve got you covered.