Skyrim:Silverdrift Lair

SR-mapicon-Nordic Ruin.png
Nordic Ruin:

Silverdrift Lair

(view on map)
# of Zones 1
Clearable Yes
Dungeon Yes
Respawn Time 10 days or 30 days
Level Min: 6
Console Location Code(s)
The Pale
East-southeast of Fort Dunstad

Northwest of Nightgate Inn
Special Features
Word Wall Disarm
# of Cooking Pots/Spits 1
Ore Veins
# of Quicksilver 2
Silverdrift Lair

Silverdrift Lair is a medium-sized Nordic ruin located east-southeast of Fort Dunstad and northwest of Nightgate Inn. The ruins are inhabited by draugr. It contains one zone: Silverdrift Lair.

Inside Silverdrift Lair

Related Quests

  • Note: This location is one of many potential targets for one or more of the radiant quests found on this page.



There are two bandits guarding the entrance of the ruin.

Zone 1: Silverdrift Lair

Two dead bandits flank a cooking spit in the first room. There's an urn and a bookcase with an iron helmet on the middle shelf up against the south wall. There are empty wine bottles and tankards throughout this ruin. Continuing through the east doorway into the next area to find a dead bandit by a junction along with a hanging rack holding two rabbits and a pheasant; the hallway continues east and also turns north. A draugr patrols the area. The way east is blocked by a barred door (where you can find a coin purse and some random armor in the space behind the broken column). Continue on through the northern hallway, which curves east toward a large iron door.

A draugr will greet you on the other side of the door. Loot includes a random healing potion on a southern bookcase and an iron mace on a small table. An embalming table opposite the door adorned with candles holds another similar healing potion, a random magicka potion, and a copy of the Two-handed skill book Words and Philosophy. There is also a dead bandit in front of the northern bookcase.

Both paths ahead lead to a multilevel central chamber: the ground level is connected to a middle level via spiraling wooden ramps, and the top level, which features a small caged bridge running east to west through the chamber, is out of reach. A draugr patrols the ground floor near a fire pit and a throne. There is an apprentice-locked chest with some decent leveled loot beside the fire pit, to the left of this is a rack with two rabbits and another pheasant. There is another dead bandit beside the fire pit. If you look west from the fire pit, under the balcony you came down from, you'll see a sort of wooden wall. Behind this wall is a bedroll and a chest with more random loot. Northeast of the fire pit, you'll find two urns and another barred wooden door. From here, you can either take the detour for more loot through the doorway on the ground floor to the west, or head for the word wall by going over the second-level bridge to the east.

A Lootable Detour

Go through the west doorway on the ground floor of the large central room, and you'll come to a small space that appears to be a dead end, with two pedestals on either side with animal carvings—a whale and a snake. The hanging lantern is positioned to hide another animal carving (a whale) higher up the wall. If you pull the right handle (the whale), the west wall will lower so you can move forward. If you do decide to pull the left handle (the snake), back up quick because the lantern above will drop, break open, and light up the flammable oil all over the floor. You can disarm this trap by igniting the oil before stepping into the area.

Move through the lowered wall down a hallway covered in webs; two draugr will emerge from standing sarcohagi in the middle of the next room. There are three additional sarcophagi around the room that are inactive. A small table in the northwest corner has a random extra magicka potion sitting on top of it and the middle inactive sarcophagus has three loose coins on the ground in front of it. A doorway to the east leads to a typical brightly lit catacombs, with two upright sarcophagi either side of a central pillar patrolled by two leveled draugr. A table to the southeast holds an expert-locked chest, a random pair of boot and random armor.

A northeastern doorway leads to the next room, which has three two-part sections. One part of each section has a handle that opens a rotating wall into the other part. The northern handle reveals a small room with a chest with some minor loot as well as a random greatsword, a random shield, and three coin purses. The middle handle opens the way to a draugr. The southern handle leads to a hallway curving south toward a door with a bar over it, which leads to the northeast corner of the large, three-level, central chamber.

Finding the Word Wall

Go to the second floor; to the east across the little stone bridge are two pressure plates that will activate spike wall traps. Two draugr are just past the traps, one of whom is guaranteed to be of a higher level and equipped with a bow, and may also possess a melee weapon; with correct timing and planning the spike walls can be used to help take down the draugr. Continue east to a dark area with a gate on the east wall that is opened by a handle on a stone pillar to your right. The switch can be difficult to spot. Facing the closed gate, between the second pressure plate and the pair of small stone pillars, look to the right pillar which should have a candle at its base, illuminating the switch. In the southern area of the dark room, you'll see some steps leading to a random enchanted helmet resting on a weight-sensitive plate. There's a spear trap which is triggered when the helmet is removed. It can be avoided by using telekinesis, a projectile spell, or an arrow on it from a distance, or else jump up on the ledge to the right of the pedestal and pick up the helmet from there. The trap can be activated again if the pedestal is pushed down and let up again by the player or other items.

Head through the eastern gate and iron door to find another draugr. There's a random healing potion and an unlocked chest with some minor loot on a stone table to the left beside an adept locked cell (which has nothing behind it). There is a bed roll with a dead bandit to the right of the table and further to the right a barred corridor that leads toward your goal which may be opened using a pull chain to the left of the gate. A battering ram trap will activate the moment you pull the chain, so back up or stand aside.


Through the gate and up several flights of stairs is a room with a long dining table and a couple of leveled draugr. There's a leveled enchanted sword and charred skeever hide on the table, with a dead bandit to the right of it. Head through the northern doorway and up some more stairs. A draugr is guarding the room at the top. On a table to the east is a random stamina potion and shield, against the west wall is a sideboard with an unlocked chest atop. To the right of this is a copy of the Pickpocket skill book Thief on the ground, between two skeletal hands with a skull above. There are two bed rolls in the room; one on your right as you enter, the other which has a dead bandit on it is between the table and chest. The exit is in the western wall.

Proceed through the doorway, down the stairs, and through the gate at the bottom, leading to the top-level caged bridge in the main chamber. A leveled draugr will be waiting with a bow and chance of melee weapon on the other side of the bridge. Move across the bridge, turn south, and head up some stairs. The iron door at the top leads to the word wall.

The only notable elements of this room are the word wall and two draugr guarding said wall. One is a generic higher level draugr, the other is a leveled boss draugr or dragon priest. The boss draugr will almost always be located in front of the word wall, usually facing toward it, and may trigger a flame spout trap in the floor in front of the word wall as it moves around. There is a second flame spout trap in front of you as you enter the room. You will find two dead bandits in the room, they may be raised by the boss to fight, defeating one of them will cause them to thank you as they disintegrate. There are several plinth around the room, but they only hold riuned books. Up the stairs on your right as you enter is a raised area with two upright sarcophagi, cross over the bridge to a third sarcophagus, this one contains skeletal remains that can be looted along with a random helmet.

Once you manage to defeat them, obtain the word of power (part of the Disarm shout) and head through the iron door to the west and down the hall. In the next room there will be two urns as well as a boss-level chest sitting on a stone altar in front of you. Pull the chain to the left of the boss chest, and proceed through the north gate, down the stairs, and around the bend to the barred door, which opens up into the first hallway you entered.


  • Two quicksilver ore veins are located 200 ft northwest of the lair on a cliff (head to the right when exiting the lair and stick to the rocks to your right until you see path up to the small plateau).


  • In the main chamber of the first zone, there's a torch in an alcove on the eastern wall of the ground floor. It is possible to jump behind this torch and get stuck with no legitimate way to escape. ?
    • Summoning an atronach beneath your feet, should you become trapped in this space, may slowly push you out with creative jumping and a little luck, allowing you to escape (confirmed with a storm atronach).
  • The barred door will open from the wrong side, but, as the bar will still be in place, there is no way to raise the bar to go backwards through the ruin.
  • The wall might not teach you a Word. This can prevent further information about Words of Power via the Greybeards, or letters from friends.
  • After exiting the ruins through the shortcut, you may fall into a crevice with no way out. ?
    • Fast travel to another location to escape.