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Skyrim:Great Lift at Alftand

< Skyrim: Places: Dwarven Ruins
Dwarven Ruin:
Great Lift at Alftand
(view on map)
Clearable No
Respawn Time 10 days
Console Location Code(s)
BlackreachElevatorAlftand, BlackreachQuickExitAlftand
Winterhold, Blackreach
Northeast of Nightgate Inn
Southeast of Wayward Pass
The Alftand Lift to Blackreach

The Great Lift at Alftand is a Dwarven lift to Blackreach located northeast of Nightgate Inn and southeast of Wayward Pass. It is a mechanical lift which can only be entered and used after starting the quest Discerning the Transmundane. Inside the lift building is a lever which, when activated, will bring you up from or take you down into Blackreach. The lift will open a short distance south-southeast of the exit from Alftand Cathedral inside Blackreach. The topside of the lift is housed in a building surrounded by metal barriers, one of which is a gate. The gate can only be opened from within, by pulling a lever to the right of the gate, after which the lift can be entered from Skyrim whenever you travel there (fast traveling places you right outside the lift). The map marker for this location does not appear until the lift is activated inside Blackreach.

The lift is Dwemer in origin, and is one of seven entrances to Blackreach, which must first be entered by traversing the ruins of Alftand, Mzinchaleft, or Raldbthar and using the Attunement Sphere from Septimus Signus to open a door to Blackreach.

Related QuestsEdit



The lift is in a fairly isolated location, east of the path between Nightgate Inn and Wayward Pass. The lift is on the edge of Winterhold, but overlooks the Pale with its stunning landscape. The inn can be seen to the southwest. To the northwest you may encounter leveled animals, bandits, or hunters, often battling each other.

Great Lift at AlftandEdit

In Blackreach, the lift is south-southeast of the exit from Alftand Cathedral and southeast of Sinderion's Field Laboratory. Before using this lift to enter Blackreach, you must first lower spears blocking access to the lift in Blackreach by activating a button on a sculpted metal head in front. You may then ride the lift up and use a lever to open a gate in Skyrim. There are two crimson nirnroot plants nearby: one is at the base of the stairs, and the other is around the side of the structure to the right when facing the lift. A falmer and a chaurus cocoonDG containing a chaurus hunterDG are a short distance north of the lift, between the lift and the exit from Alftand Cathedral.


  • A bug may occur when the great lifts are accessed to or from Blackreach. When the character reappears in Skyrim or in Blackreach, the game autosaves, then the screen goes blank/black, reappears a few seconds later, and then goes blank/black again. This continues to occur indefinitely; attempts to move/run/sprint or use Whirlwind Sprint only result in the character reappearing at the original place of arrival during intervals when the game screen reappears.
    • Opening the menu or favorites screen and leaving the screen open for 15 - 30 seconds stops the bug.
  • Sometimes after activating the lift from Blackreach, you are positioned outside the lift building on the surface, preventing you from opening the door from within the building. This bug may also be triggered if you have too many followers from unfinished quests and/or summoned followers, such that you are pushed outside the lift building on the surface in order to make room for the followers.
    • If this happens, load the previous save, then have your dog and regular follower (if any) wait for you in Blackreach outside the lift area before activating the lift. You may then use the lift and open the gate from within the lift building once you reach the surface.