See the end-note for a link to a detailed description.
This photograph shows the whole width of the crannog. I also examined it more closely, although I was careful not to step into the interior, where delicate timber remains might have been damaged.
Remains of several marine crannogs have been found in the intertidal zone in the Firth of Clyde. The best preserved of these is NS4173 : Dumbuck Crannog
. The others are NS4073 : Westferry crannog
(also known as Langbank East Crannog), and NS3873 : Langbank west crannog
. The four already mentioned are the main marine crannog sites in the firth. Another (see Link
at WoSAS) was recorded and examined, although its remains have since become very hard to discern; there may have been others.
The more familiar lochside variety of crannog was located out in the water, and was connected to the shore by a causeway. However, the marine crannogs seem to have been different in this respect; a report entitled "Coastal Zone Assessment Survey: Firth Of Clyde & Isle Of Bute" (Report No. 876) by CFA Archaeology, on behalf of Historic Scotland, cites Alex Hales' "Marine Crannogs: previous work and recent surveys" (2000; Proc Soc Antiq Scot, 130, 537-558) and notes that:
"The work carried out at Dumbuck suggested that this site, and possibly Langbank West were built on the end of promontory features, projecting into the water from palaeoshorelines. By way of contrast, Erskine was built on a raised area adjacent to deeper-water channels suitable for access by shallow-draught boats, such as log boats, even at low tide."
Erskine Crannog is exposed for about four hours at low tide. For other details, see NS4572 : Erskine Crannog: remains of timber piles
, NS4572 : Erskine Crannog: interior
, and NS4572 : Erskine Crannog: north-eastern edge
As for the background details of this photograph: the distant obelisk of NS4373 : The Henry Bell Monument
can be seen on the other shore of the Clyde, near the left-hand edge of the image. The NS4474 : Hill of Dun
is behind the right-hand edge of the crannog. Dumbuck Hill (NS4274 : Dumbuck Quarry
) is above the crannog's left-hand edge (compare NS4274 : Dumbuck Hill, Dunbartonshire
, where the hill shows a similar profile). Sheep Hill (NS4374
), site of a vitrified Iron Age fort, is between them, above a point to the left of the crannog's centre.