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Panther's old stories: Burghead to Findhorn
by BlackPanther » Wed Feb 29, 2012 2:04 pm
Route description: Forres to Burghead , Moray Coastal Trail
Date walked: 13/03/2011
Time taken: 4 hours
Distance: 19 km1 person thinks this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
The rocky beach in Findhorn is also a perfect spot to observe wildlife, sea birds are at plenty:
...and on more windy days the angry sea waves are a spectacle to watch:
Last spring we had a few days off in March, it was relatively cold but nice enough to do some local walks. Burghead beach walk was a tempting option
The distance between the villages of Burghead and Findhorn when walked along the beach, is about 6 miles (9.5km) but on a good day and with tides low it's all flat and easy walking and the beach is superb. We started from Burghead this time and headed west.
The village itself is an interesting spot to visit, with a pictish fort site and a fishing port. Some good panoramas from the viewpoint guaranteed, like this one, looking east towards Hopeman:
Burghead visitor centre on the edge of the cliffs:
The suitable place for parking in Burghead is next to the campsite on the southwest end of the town, basically next to the entrance tot the beach. The fishing port is to the right and one can pop in there to watch fishermen at work, but we walked straight to the beach. Low tide is crucial here if you want to wander about:
On that particular day, both the mighty sea and the changeable weather were at our side:
Seagulls were invited for dinner at Burghead Bay:
We walked west along the coast. The first stage was a wee bit muddy but soon we found ourselves at more solid sand, with a lovely, summery feeling around :
Only Ben Wyvis didn't exactly fit into the summer-like atmosphere... It was still dressed in white:
About 1 km west from Burghead we encountered first antitank boxes:
Well, different people will have different opinions about these concrete blocks on the beach. Some will find them spoiling the view and the natural environment, others won't mind, and lurkers like me will absolutely love them as an interesting addition to the landscape
The pillboxes were placed here in the 1940s, when the beach was used by the American and Canadian Military to train for the D-Day landings of the second world war. There are over ten pillboxes and hundreds of small antitank blocks (I didn't count them ) scattered along the seaside. Some of them have sunk into the sand and are partly worn away, but they are still a great place to lurk! And explore! Not to mention they have been inhabited by wildlife as well (mostly barnacles).
Some of the big pill boxes:
The best, the cleanest part of the beach is half way between the two villages:
Just past the ruins of Millie Bothy we had to cross a stream, but fortunately there's a small wooden bridge:
I was in my element, chasing wildlife and looking for beach treasures - the alive ones just to be photographed, like this starfish:
This herring gull has obviously found its own beach treasure :
Further towards Findhorn and more antitank blocks and pillboxes:
Even Kevin couldn't resist :
It was turning a bit windy but even through the wet air we still could see the opposite end of the bay:
Closer to Findhorn, the pillboxes are situated in the middle of the tidal zone rather than on the edge of the dunes:
We weren't the only people walking around:
An oil rig anchored in the bay plus some white background
Having a look inside, is anybody home?
One more pillbox:
Looking to Burghead from the dunes close to Findhorn:
The dunes of Findhorn and wind farms in the background:
An older picture, taken in 2010, shows the pill boxes submerging in the sea:
The final stretch of the coastline is more rocky:
On the way back we put cameras away and simply enjoyed the beach, the sunshine and the lovely views around. I can highly recommend this walk to anybody, and if you get tired of the seaside (is it possible???), you can always climb the dunes or hide in Roseisle Forest. One way or another - great fun guaranteed!
by dogplodder » Wed Feb 29, 2012 2:28 pm
by BlackPanther » Wed Feb 29, 2012 3:04 pm
by dogplodder » Wed Feb 29, 2012 3:55 pm
by BlackPanther » Wed Feb 29, 2012 4:09 pm
I just remembered that there was a thread about bridge cameras on WH on gear-equipment forum, different folks describing their cameras, maybe that will help you as well
by mrssanta » Wed Feb 29, 2012 5:00 pm
by ChrisW » Wed Feb 29, 2012 7:58 pm
by BlackPanther » Thu Mar 01, 2012 2:17 pm
ChrisW wrote: is it erosion that left those pillboxes in the sea?
Yes, it must be coastal erosion, dunes being washed away by the sea. Some of these boxes are still on the very edge of the cliffs and close to Findhorn, many of them are on top of the dunes. Some rest in strange positions when the cliff collapsed below them: