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SR-mapicon-Nordic Ruin.png
Nordic Ruin:


(view on map)
# of Zones 2
Clearable Yes
Dungeon Yes
Respawn Time 10 days or 30 days
Level Min: 24
Bandits, Draugr, Frostbite Spiders, Volsung
Important Treasure
Surfeit of Thieves

Console Location Code(s)
VolskyggeExterior01, VolskyggeExterior02

VolskyggeExterior03, VolskyggeExterior04

Volskygge01, Volskygge02
West of Pinemoon Cave, between Deepwood Redoubt and Lost Echo Cave
Special Features
Word Wall Whirlwind Sprint
Ore Veins
# of Orichalcum 1

Volskygge is a Nordic barrow west of Solitude in the coastal mountains, situated between Deepwood Redoubt and Lost Echo Cave. The barrow contains a word wall for the Whirlwind Sprint shout, guarded by a dragon priest.

The barrow has two interior zones, namely Volskygge and Volskygge Passages, which are separated by a puzzle. The second zone leads to an exterior area, Volskygge Peak, which contains the word wall.

The outside of the main entrance and the first zone are guarded by leveled bandits with standard equipment. There are two single-room barrows nearby, containing minor loot—one has a draugr, the other a trapped iron door. The second zone is inhabited by leveled draugr, while the third is guarded by the dragon priest Volsung.

Related Quests


Zone 1: Volskygge

The banqueting hall inside Volskygge

The dungeon contains a single puzzle room.

In the second room is a caged handle that opens a secret panel to a chest. To the right of that secret panel on the shelves is a copy of the Lockpicking skill book Surfeit of Thieves.

When you reach this area, there are four pillars near the corners of the room. Each pillar represents one of four animals, and has a handle atop and a plaque at floor level showing the animal's image. Across the room from the entrance is a closed grate, in front of which is a lectern with the book The Four Totems of Volskygge resting on top of it. This book contains a riddle for the solution to opening the grate leading out. The four handles must be operated in the correct order for the gate to open, which is Snake, Bear, Fox, Wolf. A fire will light up atop the central pillar each time you pull the correct handle. The room beyond the grating has the passage to the second zone, Volskygge Passages. This room also has hidden lever on the north side on the pillar the skeleton is leaning against that opens another secret door leading to a few potions, loot, and a pressure plate poison dart trap.

Zone 2: Volskygge Passages

A Draugr Death Overlord rises from his throne.

After clearing the puzzle room, the second zone contains several draugr. Before going down the winding passage, look to the rear of the room on the left; there is a lever that opens a hidden room with some loot. Watch out for the floor trap before entering the hidden room. There is a winding passage filled with frostbite spiders. After the spider passage, there will be an area with twin bridges. Follow the flow of the stream and there will be a chest with minor treasure at the end. There will also be a pickaxe on the ground which you can use on the orichalcum ore vein next to you. Go across one of the bridges and up the stairs. At the top of the second flight of steps, there will be a seated Draugr Death Overlord who will arise when you enter. Dispatch it post-haste; there is a chest with minor treasure.

Exterior: Volskygge Peak

Volskygge Peak

Once you exit the Volskygge Passages, you find yourself atop a nearby mountain, at the base of a staircase. At the top of the staircase is the word wall with part of the shout Whirlwind Sprint. Once you have learned the word, the sarcophagus at the top of the stairs will open, and the dragon priest Volsung will emerge. He is a powerful undead foe who uses strong frost magic and carries the artifact mask Volsung.


  • It's possible to reach both Volsung and the word wall by just running up the mountain. Volsung will rise from his grave after learning the word from the wall. You can then go through the dungeon starting with the exit until almost the very start of the second section, where a door that only opens from one side stops you from continuing (right after the trap door rooms).
  • Scaling the peak to reach the word wall (versus going through the ruins themselves) has caused confusion about the puzzle room. Going back through and trying to solve the puzzles, they are backwards from coming the wrong way. The easy way to avoid this is to simply go through the ruins and solve the puzzle as you go along.
  • You may want to do the puzzle room wrong to start with. There are three draugr and a dead skeleton with loose armor and weapons.


  • When in the Volskygge Passages, a trap will open up under you. Re-closing this trap has caused the game to freeze. ?
  • When in the Volskygge Passages, some narrow parts of the path may be closed up by invisible spider webs, creating the impression that there is a map fault and the passage is not wide enough to go down. Slashing with a sword will make the spider web appear and will clear it away, as in other dungeons. ?
  • If you get stuck in the mountains while fighting Volsung, the dragon priest mask may not be on him if you kill him and then fast travel. ?
  • If you have completed the puzzle but fast-traveled from the mountains without killing Volsung, returning later and going through Volskygge may put you into the situation where the puzzle gate is closed but the handles are locked in place.
  • Volsung may occasionally not rise from his crypt. The word wall may also be impossible to use. A method around this is to use the Unrelenting Force shout on the crypt. This can also happen when reentering Volskygge and exiting during battle. ?
  • Hand to hand combat with Volsung may cause the game to freeze. ?


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