Lammermuir Deans & Dunglass

This excursion will examine the spectacular geomorphological features exposed in Fairy Glen. Later, at Dunglass, we will visit the coastal termination of a glacial outwash channel cut into Carboniferous strata. A visit will also be made to the Collegiate Church of Dunglass to see the memorial to James Hall, a friend of James Hutton and early experimental petrologist.

Read the Code of Conduct and Safety Guidelines and book your place …

Excursion title:

Lammermuir Deans & Dunglass

Date & time:

2nd May 2020 10:30

Finish time:

16:30

Leaders:

Fiona McGibbon  The Open University and Edinburgh University Centre for Open Learning

Excursion aims and description:

The Lammermuir Hills are incised by numerous glacial outwash channels that form deeply incised valleys revealing the otherwise largely hidden geology of the region.  This trip examines the Great Conglomerate of the Lower Devonian Reston Group where exposed in the Fairy Glen at Aikengall, where both the outcrops and landscape are of interest.

The second locality (Dunglass) will visit the coastal termination of a glacial outwash channel to look at the dramatic gorge and examine the Carboniferous strata it cuts into. We will visit the beach to examine these strata further and the modern beach deposits as well.  We will then walk up to the Collegiate Church of Dunglass to see the memorial to local hero James Hall of Dunglass, friend of Hutton and early experimental petrologist.

Transport:

private cars.

Meeting point:

NT 3709 6708 by sheepwash at Wester Aikengall Farm.

First locality:

As above.  We will meet at this location and  take as few cars as possible for the last half mile of the journey to a parking restricted site.

Excursion route:

This is a field trip with three different sites.  We start in the morning at Wester Aikengall to explore the Fairy Glen for about 2hours and may lunch there.  We then will drive to the next locality (NT37706722) to park and visit to different sites on foot (Dunglass Beach and Dunglass Collegiate Church).

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

The first part of the trip involves a very steep descent into a glacial outwash channel, followed by less than a mile walking in total. The second part of the trip will be over less than three miles total walking distance.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

Rough ground and steep terrain at the first locality (Lammermuir Deans).  Narrow beach with limited escape routes at second locality.

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

Stout footwear essential and walking poles if required.  Tide times have been consulted for second site visit is on a falling tide close to low tide.

This trip is not suitable for anyone with vertigo and requires a reasonable level of fitness suitable for the descent and ascent of a steep bank of loose deposits.

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed:

No, neither required.

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

no.  There are sheep on the loose.

Toilet information:

There are no toilet facilities at either location on this trip.

Geological map sheet:

33(E) Dunbar

OS map sheet:

Explorer 351, Landranger 67

References:

Stone, P. et al (2012): British Regional Geology – South of Scotland (4th Edition), BGS, Nottingham.

SNH/BGS (1997) East Lothian and the Borders – A landscape fashioned by geology.  Available as free pdf download at: https://www.nature.scot/landscape-fashioned-geology-east-lothian-and-borders

McAdam, A.D., Clarkson, E.N.K. (1996) Lothian Geology: An Excursion Guide (p.152-154)

Davies, A., McAdam, A.D. and Cameron, I.B. (1986) Geology of the Dunbar district, Mem. Br. Geol. Surv., Sheet 33E and part of Sheet 41 (Scotland).

 

Gasswater Baryte Mine

Barite mineralisation has been worked in the past at a number of locations in the western part of the Midland Valley. This excursion will examine the setting and nature of the mineralisation at Gasswater mine: a series of NWSE trending trenches and other mining features on the northeast bank of the Gass Water, East Ayrshire. Mining took place there between 1920 and 1964. The workings and spoil heaps will be examined to determine the style and associations of the mineralisation.

Read the Code of Conduct and Safety Guidelines and book your place …

Excursion title:

Gasswater Baryte Mine, East Ayrshire

Date & time:

1st August 2020 9:00

Finish time:

17:00

Leaders:

Graham Leslie, BGS; David Stephenson, EGS

Excursion aims and description:

To examine the setting and nature of the barite mineralisation at Gasswater Mine, east Ayrshire. A series of NW-SE trending excavated trenches and associated mining related features extend across the slopes of Whiteyards Hill on the north-eastern banks of the Gass Water, East Ayrshire [2660 6216]. Mining took place between 1920 and 1964; the baryte mineralisation is regarded as part of well-developed suite of mineral occurrences extending south-east from Muirshiel in the Renfrewshire Hills in to this part of east Ayrshire (Stephenson and Coats, 1983). Examination of the cuts and mining-related features is readily achieved, with due attention to safe procedures, there will be no access underground.

Wet, inclement weather alternatives could include the newly opened Glenbuck Heritage Village; the base Devonian section revealed in the new road alignment at Glenbuck Loch and a visit to the Lugar Sill exposures alongside the A70 at Lugar village.

Transport:

Minibus from Waterloo Place at 9am

Meeting point:

Waterloo Place. Coach route west out of Edinburgh. Pick-up point at Glasgow Road or Fairmilehead.

First locality:

Car park, Dalblair village (26460 61930), prior to walk to Gasswater Mine [26600 62160]

Excursion route:

Walk NE from Dalblair village across hill track to Gasswater Mine (3.5 km), examine mine area (c. 1km2), and return.

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

3.5 km hill track from Dalblair to Gasswater Mine, and return; c. 80 m ascent descent each way. Open hillside around mine site but with level track connecting main sites.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

Tracks and open hillsides present no undue hazard, providing party equipped with suitable footwear and wet weather clothing. No specific shelter points on this open ground. Party should treat all open cuts with caution; note that inaccessible open cuts are fenced off and should not be entered. No access to any underground working permitted.

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

No entry to any fenced-off workings or underground spaces. Normal suitable footwear and wet weather clothing etc.

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed:

 Yes, both.

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

If under control at all times. Grazing sheep likely.

Toilet information:

There are no toilets on the walking route.

Geological map sheet:

15W Bedrock, New Cumnock

OS map sheet:

References:

STEPHENSON, D. AND COATS, J. S. 1983. Baryte and copper mineralisation in the Renfrewshire Hills, central Scotland. Mineral Reconnaissance Programme Rep. Inst. Geol. Sci., No. 67.

Whinny Hill, Holyrood Park

Booking essential. Please read and take note of the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines, in particular the procedures in place to minimise the transmission of Coronavirus.

Read the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines and Book your place …

Excursion title:

Whinny Hill, Holyrood Park

Date & time:

Saturday 3 October 2020, 10am

Finish time:

1pm

Leaders:

Angus Miller, Geowalks

Excursion aims and description:

We will visit a succession of basalt lava flows from the Arthur’s Seat volcano which form Whinny Hill. There are also some minor intrusions.

Meeting point:

North-east end of St Margaret’s Loch, on the Queen’s Drive in Holyrood Park. NT 276 739.

First locality:

St Anthony’s Chapel, NT275 737.

Excursion route:

From St Margaret’s Loch, take a steep path to St Anthony’s Chapel and on through the Dry Dam towards Dunsapie. We will then turn back over Whinny Hill, then descend to the Queen’s Drive and back to the start point.

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

2.5km on rough paths with 120m of ascent.

www.plotaroute.com/route/1022066

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

None

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

None

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed?

No

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

Yes

Toilet information:

None

Geological map sheet:

Edinburgh 32E

OS map sheet:

Explorer 350

References:

EGS leaflet, Discovering Edinburgh’s Volcano.

Wardie Shore

Booking essential. Please read and take note of the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines, in particular the procedures in place to minimise the transmission of Coronavirus.

Read the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines and Book your place …

Excursion title:

A new look at Wardie shore

Date & time:

Wednesday 23 September 2020 1pm

Finish time:

4pm

Leaders:

Tom Challands, University of Edinburgh

Excursion aims and description:

Wardie shore in north Edinburgh has been a favourite with geologists and palaeontologists since the early 19th century. The famous palaeoichthyologists Agassiz and Traquair described numerous fish from Wardie and work on the site was rejuvenated in the 1970’s by the late Stan Wood. Despite such iconic status Wardie has never received a detailed study of the changing environments represented by the various shales, silts and sands and how these changes correlate with the well-known fauna from the site. This field trip will explain recent work that has been conducted at Wardie that has illuminated the changing oxygen conditions in the once murky waters that harboured some quite indomitable beasts.

Meeting point:

At the start of the eastern breakwater in Wardie Bay by the beach just off Lower Granton Road NT 241 771

Excursion route:

From the meeting point we will head east along Wardie Shore as far as Trinity Pumping Station.

www.plotaroute.com/route/1021111

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

Variable from sandy beach to wet and slippy rocks covered in seaweed and algae. Care must be taken on rocks.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

None

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

n/a

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed?

No

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

Yes

Toilet information:

There are no public toilet facilities nearby

Geological map sheet:

BGS 1: 50 000 32E Edinburgh

OS map sheet:

Explorer sheet 350

References (see below):

Clarkson, E.N.K. (1986) Granton and Wardie shore, 76–80 In Lothian Geology an excursion guide, (eds A.D. McAdam and E.N.K. Clarkson) Scottish Academic Press, 221pp

Mitchell, G.H. and Mykura, W. (1962) The Geology of the Neighbourhood of Edinburgh.Memoirs of the Geological Survey of Great Britain (3rd edn)

Wood, S.P. (1975) Recent discoveries of Carboniferous fishes in Edinburgh. Scottish Journal ofGeology, 11, 251–8.

** Most useful reference **

Volume 16: Fossil Fishes of Great BritainChapter 9: British Carboniferous fossil fishes sitesSite: WARDIE (GCR ID: 1370)

available at:

http://archive.jncc.gov.uk/pdf/gcrdb/GCRsiteaccount1370.pdf

Siccar Point

Booking essential. Please read and take note of the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines, in particular the procedures in place to minimise the transmission of Coronavirus.

Read the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines and Book your place …

Excursion title:

Siccar Point

Date & time:

Saturday 26 September, 2020, 10am

Finish time:

2pm

Leader(s):

Bob Gatliff, EGS

Excursion aims and description:

Siccar Point is described as the most important geological site in the world. It demonstrates an unconformity between two sets of strata and was used by James Hutton to support his world-shaking ideas of geological time and natural processes.

We will visit the Old Red Sandstone exposures at Pease Bay before walking out to Siccar Point over a grassy field. This excursion is aimed at new EGS members but is open to all.

Meeting point:

Car park at Pease Bay Holiday Park, Cocksburnpath TD13 5YP

Excursion route:

Walk along Pease Bay to exposures at west end of beach. Walk from Siccar Point car park to Siccar Point

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

Rough paths and grassy fields.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

Steep grassy slope above Siccar Point, which can be muddy and dangerous when wet.

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

Participants should only descend to Siccar Point if they are physically fit and properly equipped with walking boots and the conditions are suitable: dry grass, not windy.

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed?

No

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

No

Toilet information:

Toilets and shop at Pease Bay

Geological map sheet:

Eyemouth S34

OS map sheet:

67 Duns, Dunbar and Eyemouth

References:

Lothian Geology – an Excursion Guide (EGS, 1996) pp 146-151

Siccar Point leaflet pub. By LBGC 2015 https://www.edinburghgeolsoc.org/publications/geoconservation– leaflets/

Dalkeith Buildings

Booking essential. Please read and take note of the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines, in particular the procedures in place to minimise the transmission of Coronavirus.

Read the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines and Book your place …

Excursion title:

Dalkeith Buildings Heritage Walk

Date & time:

Wednesday 30 September 2020, 1pm

Finish time:

4pm

Leaders:

Tom Challands, University of Edinburgh

Excursion aims and description:

The historic Royal Burgh of Dalkeith has a large number of interesting stone buildings, dating back to the 15th century. This walking excursion along the paths and streets of Dalkeith will provide a chance to look at the use and source of building materials in the town. We can compare the weathering characteristics of the various rock types and see examples of techniques used to repair and conserve buildings. We shall see examples of locally quarried Upper Carboniferous sandstones as well as stone brought into the town from other parts of Scotland and further afield – a rich geodiversity on our doorsteps!

Meeting point:

Outside the Dalkeith Corn Exchange Museum building [NT333 675] in the High Street, Dalkeith.

First locality:

Corn Exchange

Excursion route:

Circular route around Dalkeith including High Street, Edinburgh Road, Lugton Bridge, Buccleuch Street, and Eskbank Road.

www.plotaroute.com/route/1021145

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

Total distance of 4 km is mainly on pavements. Some busy roads will be crossed.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

Walking on pavements next to roads with traffic, some short ascents and descents. Gravestones and ancient masonry in St Nicholas Churchyard.

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

Be aware of traffic – be diligent and look before crossing streets; take care on pavements which may be slippery especially in wet weather. Be aware of low-risk potential for collapse of unstable masonry.

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed?

Hi-viz vests desirable; the leader will wear his.

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

Dogs may be brought provided they are kept on leads.

Toilet information:

Public toilets may be available in Dalkeith centre as well as a number of hostelries.

Geological map sheet:

BGS 1: 50 000 32E Edinburgh

OS map sheet:

Explorer sheet 345 or 350

References:

Mitchell, G H and Mykura, W. 1962. The geology of the neighbourhood of Edinburgh. Memoirs of the Geological Survey, Scotland.

Dalkeith Building Stones leaflet, Lothian and Borders GeoConservation https://www.edinburghgeolsoc.org/publications/geoconservation-leaflets/

Salisbury Crags, Holyrood Park

Booking essential. Please read and take note of the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines, in particular the procedures in place to minimise the transmission of Coronavirus.

Read the Code of Conduct & Safety Guidelines and Book your place …

Excursion title:

Salisbury Crags, Holyrood Park

Date & time:

Sunday 20 September 2020, 10 am

Finish time:

1 pm

Leaders:

Angus Miller, Geowalks

Excursion aims and description:

Salisbury Crags is Scotland’s best example of an intrusive sill, where magma has been forced between layered sedimentary rocks underground. This happened about 335 million years ago. We will walk around Salisbury Crags, viewing the impressive cliffs and the sedimentary rocks above the sill in the Camstane Quarry.

Meeting point:

Grassy area to the east of the Holyrood Palace Car Park, on the Queens Drive

First locality:

Camstane Quarry

Excursion route:

Camstane Quarry, Hunter’s Bog, Salisbury Crags.

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

Rough paths and pavements.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

None

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

None

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed?

No

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

Yes

Toilet information:

Holyrood Park Education Centre, close to meeting point.

References:

Edinburgh 32E

OS map sheet:

Explorer 350 Edinburgh

References (see below):

Discovering Edinburgh’s Volcano. A geological guide to Holyrood Park (EGS)

Arbroath to Auchmithie

This excursion will follow the coastal trail starting from Auchmithie, south to Arbroath. We will study the Upper and Lower Devonian sandstones and conglomerates and their interaction with coastal erosion to produce a spectacular suite of  geomorphological features.

Read the Code of Conduct and Safety Guidelines and book your place …

Excursion title:

Raised beaches and Old Red Sandstone: Auchmithie to Arbroath Geodiversity Trail

Date & time:

11th July 2020 09:00

Finish time:

16:00 (17:30 in Edinburgh)

Leaders:

Dr. Alastair McGowan, EGS

Excursion aims and description:

A coastal walk to study the Devonian sedimentary rocks and their interaction with coastal erosion to produce a spectacular suite of coastal geomorphological features.

Transport:

Coach.

Meeting point:

Waterloo Place. Coach route north out of Edinburgh. Pick-up points at Blackhall, Barnton and Ferry Toll P&R.

First locality:

Park at car park NO 6780 4420 and then go down to examine Auchtmitie Harbour.

Excursion route:

Following coastal trail as detailed in the Arbroath to Auchmithie leaflet. We will go from Auchmithie to Arbroath (North-South).

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

Good paths and roads at start and finish. Steps down to a sand/cobble beach and then back up.

https://www.plotaroute.com/route/1006749

Distance around 5 miles (8 km) and 163 m ascent, 198 m descent.

Also Walk Highlands information for ‘there and back’ walk https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/angus/arbroath-cliffs.shtml.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

All of the hazards, from AJM knowledge of the area, are covered in the Low-Risk hazard descriptions and control risks. Footwear should be walking shoes, trainers or boots.

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

AJM has additional first-aid equipment and is certified as an outdoor leader and Advanced First Aider with emphasis on remote environments.

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed:

Hard hats would be advised for some of the beach sections and near cliffs when on beach.

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

Yes.

Toilet information:

Toilets at both ends of the trail.

Geological map sheet:

BGS Scotland 49

OS map sheet:

Explorer 382; Landranger 54

References:

Fife & Tayside – a landscape fashioned by geology (Scottish Natural Heritage and BGS)

Fife & Angus Geology – an Excursion Guide (Pentland Press)

http://www.taysidebiodiversity.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/Auchmithie_Trail_Leaflet.pdf

 

Queensferry to Hound Point (joint with Geological Society of Glasgow)

This joint excursion will start at the slipway opposite the Hawes Inn. We will view the bridges then continue eastwards to Hound Point to examine the Carboniferous sedimentary and igneous rocks along the coast. High tea will be arranged in South Queensferry.

Read the Code of Conduct and Safety Guidelines and book your place …

Excursion title:

South Queensferry

Date & time:

27th June 2020 10:30

Finish time:

16:00

Leaders:

Richard Smith, EGS

Excursion aims and description:

To view the 3 bridges and examine Carboniferous sedimentary and igneous rocks along the coast to the east.

Transport:

Private cars or public transport.

Meeting point:

Hawes Pier, South Queensferry NT 135 783

First locality:

Hawes Pier, South Queensferry NT 135 783

Bus and car parking by promenade to the west.

Excursion route:

Walk west on promenade to view the bridges, then east on coastal path to Hound Point and back, stopping at select rock exposures.

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

Walking about 6 km on mainly fairly even path (kerbs and stiles a possibility) with some steep slopes and rocks on shoreline; 10 m or so of ascent and descent to rock exposures on sandy beaches.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

Likely slippery rocks if wet. Risk of being cut off by a rising tide.

Admiralty Tide table predicts Low Tide 12.21pm on 27-6-2020, gradually rising to High tide at 19.30.

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

Require sturdy boots with good grip, waterproof clothing, gloves, consider a trekking pole, sunscreen, plenty of water, food. Protection against wind and possibility of poor visibility so stay in the group.

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed:

No, neither required.

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

No.

Toilet information:

Toilets at beginning and end of walk.

Geological map sheet:

BGS 1:50,000 32W

OS map sheet:

Landranger 65

References:

Edinburgh Geology: Excursion Guide; Cramond-Queensferry pp192-196

 

Spittal Shore, Northumberland

We will walk from Spittal to Cocklawburn through an almost complete foreshore exposure from the top of the Scremerson Coal Group through the Lower and Middle Limestone Groups. We will also consider the tectonic setting, the changing  paleogeography and the legacy of coal and limestone mining.

Read the Code of Conduct and Safety Guidelines and book your place …

Excursion title:

Spittal to Cocklawburn: Mining, cycles and a monocline

Date & time:

27th July 2020 9:00

Finish time:

16:00 (17:30)

Leaders:

Ian Kille, Northumbrian Earth

Excursion aims and description:

To explore the Carboniferous sedimentary sequence from the Scremerston Coal Group into the Middle Limestone Group south of Berwick on Tweed exploring its tectonic setting, changing palaeo-geography and its industrial use.

Transport:

Minibus from Waterloo Place at 9am

Meeting point:

Waterloo Place. Coach route east out of Edinburgh. Pick-up point at Milton Road.

First locality:

Spittal just south of Berwick upon Tweed. Meet at the south end of the promenade nearest to the cliff NU 010 509

Excursion route:

From Spittal walking south under the cliff to Cargies Plantation, then walk up to the cliff path to descend into Cocklawburn Beach. Walk across Cocklawburn Beach to Mid Skerrs for low tide then return to Saltpan Rocks before re-joining the coach at the car park by Cocklawburn Beach.

Terrain, walking distance, height gain:

https://www.plotaroute.com/route/1011616

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:

  1. Rock fall/landslide from the cliff
  2. Slips and falls on the rocky skerrs
  3. being cut off by the tide

Control measures required to mitigate against any Hazards referred to above:

  1. Route planned to minimise being under steep cliffs. Participants to be advised of risky cliff sections.
  2. Participants to be advised of slippery sections, walking poles advised.
  3. Walk planned to coincide with low tide.

Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed:

 

May dogs be brought on the excursion?

Yes, but owners must follow the guidance from the AONB  http://www.northumberlandcoastaonb.org/bring-your-dog-to-the-coast/

Toilet information:

There are no toilets on the walking route.

Geological map sheet:

1 & 2

OS map sheet:

Landranger 75

References:

Northumbrian Rocks and Landscape, a field guide. Colin Scrutton