Holyrood Park, Edinburgh. Photo: Angus Miller

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

Excursion title:

Holyrood Park Mapping Exercise

Date & time:

Sunday 29 October, 10 am
(note: end of British Summer Time, clocks go back)

Finish time:

3 pm


Lindsay Agnew and Angus Miller

Excursion aims and description:

This excursion is a partial replacement for the September excursion led by Simon Cuthbert, which had to be cancelled at short notice. We hope to run another full excursion in the spring: this informal, shorter excursion is planned as a basic introduction to mapping that will complement any future mapping excursions.

Holyrood Park in Edinburgh offers a superb section through varied geology, including the eroded cone of the Arthur’s Seat volcano, a major dolerite intrusion that forms Salisbury Crags, and exposures of sandstone and other sedimentary rocks formed early in the Carboniferous period. This excursion will introduce the main features of the geology but encourage deeper understanding by learning how to create a geological map of a small area. Participants will learn the basics of making measurements in the field using a compass-clinometer, analysing rock exposures and recording information in a field notebook and paper map.

Equipment: You will need warm and waterproof clothing including stout footwear, and should bring a notebook, pencil, and a map board (A4 clipboard will do) and a large clear plastic bag. If you can, please also bring a selection of coloured pencils, a hillwalker’s compass, or a geologist’s compass clinometer if you have one.


No transport necessary

Meeting point:

Dynamic Earth cafe

First locality, parking and description:

Dynamic Earth cafe, Holyrood Road, Edinburgh EH8 8AS – parking available at Dynamic Earth or in Holyrood Park.

Excursion route:

The route is not fixed in advance, but will involve walking on paths and some sections of rough ground, with some climbing. However the total distance covered will not be more than a few kms with frequent stops.

Specific or Medium- / High-Risk Hazards:


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


Hard hats or Hi-viz clothing needed?


May dogs be brought on the excursion?


Toilet information:

Toilets at Dynamic Earth and at the Education Centre, Holyrood Park

Geological map sheet:

Scotland Sheet 32E Edinburgh

OS map sheet:

Edinburgh 66