Skyrim:Cracked Tusk Keep

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Military Fort:
Cracked Tusk Keep
(view on map)
# of Zones 2
Clearable Yes
Dungeon Yes
Respawn Time Never (storage is safe)
Level Min: 6
Orc Bandits, Ghunzul
Important Treasure
Light Armor Forging
Rislav The Righteous
Shards of Mehrunes' Razor
Console Location Code(s)
CrackedTuskKeepExterior01, CrackedTuskKeepExterior02, CrackedTuskKeep01, CrackedTuskKeep02
Falkreath Hold
West of Falkreath
Special Features
# of Alchemy Labs 1
# of Tanning Racks 1
# of Forges/Anvils 1
# of Grindstones 1
# of Workbenches 1
Ore Veins
# of Iron 1
Cracked Tusk Keep

Cracked Tusk Keep is a fort located to the west of Falkreath. It is occupied by a group of Orc bandits led by Ghunzul.

The fort has an exterior courtyard and two interior zones: Cracked Tusk Keep and Cracked Tusk Vaults. The first part of the fort serves the radiant quests, and the fort will be marked as cleared after you have killed the boss.

[edit] Related Quests

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

[edit] Walkthrough

[edit] Exterior

The grounds have the typical bulwark surrounding the keep. The guards are Orc bandits and they make good use of the many elevated positions around the keep. The western tower ruin contains a semi-buried master-locked boss chest. The easiest way to access the chest is to climb up the rubble from outside of the wall. An apprentice-locked chest is located on the very top of the keep, between the two rear towers. Using the keep's series of ramps and lookout platforms, approach from the west and climb/jump up the rubble to the top. The keep's courtyard has several outbuildings designed for sustaining an army. From left to right around the courtyard is a smokehouse with a variety of meats being cured, a small rest area, and then the main door to the keep. Across from the door is the fully equipped smithy, complete with a forge, workbench, grindstone and a tanning rack. Inside the smithy's shed is a copy of the Smithing skill book Light Armor Forging.

There are three entrances into the keep. The first, and most direct, is the front door. The second is a novice-locked door directly south from the smithy and down a flight of stairs. This is the door to the cellar and can grant an advantage towards the guards in the main room. The third is a trapdoor, located on top of the southeast tower, which leads directly to the boss.

[edit] Zone 1: Cracked Tusk Keep

Entering through the main door leads you right into the well-lit guards' area with at least two bandits. The dresser just inside the entrance has two minor potions. Other than some groceries, there is nothing else of interest in this area. The stairs lead up to the boss' quarters. Just at the top of the stairs, in the corner to the right, a leveled warhammer is leaning against a chair. The dining table is set with a nice array of food, but more interesting is the bookshelf with a leveled weapon, a potion, a coin purse and a copy of The Legend of Red Eagle may be found here. Through the set of doors at the end of the room the boss, Ghunzul, awaits. Loot him to find the Cracked Tusk Vault key, or another can be found on the dresser by the bed. A boss chest is at the foot of the bed, and a leveled weapon, potion and coin purse are on the bookshelf. Note the ladder up to the trapdoor exit at the far end of the room, just beyond the fireplace. Head back down the stairs to the main room and through the doors on the northwest wall. The stairs lead down to the basement and a novice-locked door to the outside. An alchemy lab can be found on the table with some alchemical ingredients hanging to dry. A leveled dagger lies on the table, along with a potion. Two soul gems and another potion are on the cupboard. A longbow, several iron arrows, and a third potion are on the dresser across the room. An expert-locked cage is on the west wall with a button that will open the portcullis; the vault key can be used here. Past the portcullis is the door to Cracked Tusk Vaults.

[edit] Zone 2: Cracked Tusk Vaults

As you enter, directly ahead are a potion and two soul gems. Proceed down the stairs and loot the barrel for ingredients. Buttons on the walls in the corridor will open the cells containing some loot. The cell to the right holds a leveled weapon, four potions, two soul gems, a copy of the valuable book Lost Legends of Skyrim and a coin purse. The cell to the left side contains several ingredient barrels, a potion, and a copy of the Light Armor skill book Rislav The Righteous. At the end of the corridor, to the left, is a chest and three ingredient barrels. After looting the chest, turn around to face the displaced bookshelf and find a potion laying on a barrel. To get through the gate leading to the next room, pull the two levers on the pillars in either order. The next room is trapped with three tripwires with the first being just inside the gate. The trip wires set off a poison dart trap well ahead of you at the end of the room, so are easy to disarm. A fourth tripwire across the passage to the left sets off a spike wall. An adept-locked chest is on the right side of the room, nestled between the first and second columns. The shards of Mehrunes' Razor are at the end of the passage on a weight sensitive plate; picking up the shards triggers a poison dart trap that rains down from the ceiling. Stand to the left of the plinth, grab the shards and leap backwards to avoid the worst of the spray. Simply backtrack to get out of the fort.

[edit] Notes

  • There is an iron ore vein located 150 feet due north of the keep.

[edit] Maps

[edit] Bugs

  • If the Amulet of the Moon quest directs you here, check to see if you have already visited this location. This location does not respawn, so if you have been here before, the Moon Amulet cannot spawn here and you cannot complete the quest.
    • You will need to reload a previous save to get a different location from Kharjo.

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