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Sea Stacks, Caves, Coves and Beaches (Sun)

Date: Sunday 17 June, 2018

Event leader: David Binney

Price: £5.00 - £10.00Meet time: 08:45

Estimated finish time: 15:00

Difficulty: Moderate PlusGroup size: 14

Distance: 10 miles (16km)

Please note: This event is repeated on Tuesday 19 June



Sea Stacks, Caves, Coves and Beaches (Sun)

This is one of my very favourite walks. The coastline from Hopeman along to Lossiemouth is full of interest and surprises. That the seashore section can only be completed dryshod on the lowest of tides adds to its attractions for me. In 2018 the tide times and heights are almost perfect. This walk, starting and finishing in Hopeman, is a circular with the outbound leg being along the shore and returning along the clifftops. The seashore is a mix of rock platforms, boulders and caves, combined with a delight of sandy beach, sea stacks and headlands. Remember a towel if you fancy a swim.

Expect to encounter seaweeds and wet rocks. The difficulty of the rocky shoreline varies enormously depending upon the experience and confidence of the walker. Those who enjoy ‘boulder hopping’ across gaps will have broad smiles on their faces. More cautious folks will spend rather more time and energy gently stepping down and around; this is slower but not a problem, we will have plenty of time. Everyone will need to watch out for slimmy rocks and wet polished granite if they are to avoid stumbles.

The rewards are numerous. The caves are striking examples of changing sea levels, with several thought to have been used as burial chambers in bronze age times. If you have never explerienced the total darkness that only a cave can deliver, then Gordonston Cave will be on your ‘must do’ list. Sea stacks, collapsed caves and striking rock strata will delight the geologist within you. Nesting Cormorants and Kittwakes as well as the possibility of Peregrine Falcon and Osprey will keep birdwatchers entertained.

At Clashach the eagle eyed will spot the old piers where stone from the quarry was loaded in the early 20th century. The evidence for smuggling activity is also very evident at several locations.

Children are very welcome but not a family event as such. Mine still talk of their first venture along this coast aged 11 & 13yrs. Not recommended for dogs.

Where to Meet - Description

Meet at Hopeman East car park.
Turn off the B9040 Burghead to Lossiemouth coast road in Hopeman following signs to Hopeman Harbour. At the Harbour turn right to the East beach area, signposted 'East Beach Promenade'. Park towards the far end, before the 10mph signs. Look for the Festival banner.
Grid Ref, NJ147698 Post Code IV30 5RY

Where to Meet - Map

Use the zoom controls to view the meeting place in more detail,

About the Provider

David is a member of the organising group, the Moray Way Association. The Moray Way Association is a Scottish Charity.

Having enjoyed the outdoors since his early childhood, he has in recent years stopped chasing peaks and has spent more time working to improve access in the local area. This varies from physically clearing obstructions to designing websites that encourage participation.
All monies raised from this walk will go to supporting future festivals.

If you need to contact the provider of this event please use this email:

Event Grading System

This is intended as a rough indication only. Every effort has been made to make the level of activity and physical effort involved as clear as possible within the event description. If in doubt contact the event provider.

  • Easy:    A gentle activity over level easy terrain (or equivalent) lasting up to 2 hours. All ages and abilities welcome; time to stop, chat and stare.
  • Easy+:    An activity over generally easy terrain (or equivalent). Likely to include some slight inclines or similar extra effort. Usually lasting up to 3 hours with rests, etc.
  • Moderate:    A more varied activity and/or varied terrain (or equivalent), involving some extra effort for part of it. Typically a short day activity.
  • Moderate+:    Typically a full day activity over varied terrain (or equivalent) requiring stamina and/or more sustained effort. Short breaks for refreshments, lunch, etc
  • Challenging:    A range of activities with something ‘special’ that will appeal to the more experienced outdoor person. See event entry for details.

Booking Terms and Conditions

Online Booking and Payment

The Moray Walking & Outdoor Festival is run by the Moray Way Association and sells tickets on behalf of event providers unless otherwise specified. This means that the final contract for your purchase will be between you and the event provider.

Your Order

When you place an order you will automatically receive an email from us. Your order constitutes an offer made to us to purchase the services specified in the order.
When payment is received you will receive a further email confirming acceptance of your offer. It is your responsibility to check that the confirmation issued to you is accurate.


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Refunds – Customer cancellation

Refunds can be claimed for bookings cancelled before May 31. After May 31 refunds will only be made if the places are resold as by then arrangements for events are in place. In all instances we reserve the right to levy an administrative charge of £1.

Refunds – Provider cancellation

Refunds will be provided in full for any events cancelled by providers. We are unable to provide any reimbursement or refund for any accommodation or transport booked if circumstances require an event to be cancelled.

Changes to the programme

In the event of circumstances beyond our control, we reserve the right to alter the programme and events.

Basis of participation

The organisers of the Moray Walking and Outdoor Festival recognise that outdoor activities carry a risk of personal injury dependent in part upon the skills of participants and prevailing weather conditions, both outwith the control of the organisers. Those taking part do so at their own risk and are responsible for their own actions and safety. In broad terms, the basis of participation is similar to that of individuals joining in club activities.

A key difference is that many events are led and take participants on unfamiliar routes. On led events, the event leader is responsible for route finding. A minority of events, usually offered by commercial providers, use fully trained instructors who have an additional responsibility for the overall safety of participants. If in doubt contact the provider.

Descriptions of events

Every effort is made to ensure that all events are described accurately and fairly to allow participants to make informed decisions. Ultimately event descriptions on this site are the responsibility of each event provider and the officers of The Moray Way Association cannot be held responsible for any inaccuracies. If there is uncertainty over what participation in any event entails then enquiries should be made to seek clarification.

Suitability of events

The safety and enjoyment of individuals on any event is largely dependent upon the fitness, skills and health of each individual. It is expected that participants use the information provided to choose suitable events, and do not undertake any event, or challenge within an event, that is beyond their capability.
In the unlikely circumstance that on the day of the event the leader has good grounds to doubt the suitability of their event for any individual, then they have the right to refuse admission without refund.

Young People and Vulnerable Adults

Young people (under 16yrs) and vulnerable adults are welcome on appropriate events but must be accompanied by an appropriate carer or responsible adult. The accompanying adult is best placed to judge the capability of their charge and has the full responsibility both for judging the suitability of the event for that young person or vulnerable adult and for their actions during the event.


In general dogs are welcome on walks, providing dog owners act responsibly in accordance with the Scottish Outdoor Access Code and ensure that dogs are kept under close control in the vicinity of livestock and in rural areas. The decision on whether dogs are welcome on individual events is the prerogative of the event provider, especially where transport is part of the event. If there is any doubt please contact the event provider before booking the event.

Updated February 2018