I’ve been on holiday on Shetland all week. While the landscape of the islands is hilly, none of those hills are all that high compared to most of Scotland. The highest point is Ronas Hill standing at 450 metres, a relatively easy walk from the former military base on the neighbouring Collafirth Hill.
It’s been almost thirty years since I last climbed Ronas Hill as a child and wanted to try the walk again as an adult while we were up.
We set off on a slightly overcast day, with a steady breeze that immediately made me want to put a jacket and hat on.
The landscape on and around Ronas Hill is littered with boulders and smaller rocks, many of which are tinged red. If you like stepping stones, you can go a fair distance without touching the ground!
Ronas Hill is the highest in a range of three hills that you can walk up on the way to the highest point. As you reach the start of Ronas Hill proper you can see what almost looks like sand dunes or sand formed into waves:
As you get closer, you find these are made up of rocks and small stones:
It’s not a long walk up to the summit – it took us an hour and a half and we had plenty of stops along the way. Once there, apparently you can potentially see the whole of the Shetland Islands laid out before you on a clear day. It wasn’t that clear for us, but we did get good views of Yell and Unst, two larger islands to the north east. If you zoom in on the picture below you can just make out Sullom Voe oil terminal which still provides a large part of Shetland’s income.
To the north you can walk down to some fresh water lochs which are said to contain excellent trout fishing…
Our goal for the day was to walk up Ronas Hill and I can tick that one off. Next time I’m in Shetland I want to go further and head to the cliffs to the west of Ronas Hill. Apparently these are quite stunning with a red sand beach below…