Follow the cliffs above the south shore of Burra Ness round past the ruins of the Burraness crofting toonship. In 1858 one resident of Burraness, May Moar, was involved in a dramatic rescue of the crew of a capsized fishing boat. Her bravery was recognised by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution who awarded her a silver medal and she also received The Royal Humane Society Medal. Much later residents of the Kirkabister farm were also involved in a rescue when they rowed out to save the crew of a trawler wrecked on the ‘groin’, a reef that lies off Burra Ness.
Just beyond the crofting ruins is Burra Ness Iron Age broch. This broch on the north shore of Burra Ness has walls over 4m thick and is one of the best preserved in Shetland. In summer the gaps and cavities in the walls are home to nesting Storm Petrel.
From the broch follow the north shore past stone built boat ‘noosts’ where open boats were drawn up for shelter from winter storms. Cross the shingle beach by the small loch then head north-west to climb to the summit of the Hill of Burraness. From here there is good views of the coasts of Unst and Fetlar.
Continue north-west to the summit of the Hill of Kirkabister then turn west to descend to the start point, passing the ruin of the croft of Unkadaal. Typical of the Shetland croft house of the day there may well have been 12 souls living in this house in 1858.