By Gabbi Armstrong
Communications Project Manager for the North Coast 500
Published: 30th May 2018


A newly designed Geotrail on the Coigach peninsula launched in April 2018 by the Achiltibuie Tourist Association. We caught up with Mairi Thornton to find out more.

 The 45 mile trail comprises a series of 10 main excursions all within 6 miles of Achiltibuie and explores the geological evidence of 3 billion years of Earth’s history and the influence of floods, deserts, ice, seismic events and a massive asteroid impact. The routes on the trail visit some of the best viewpoints in the area as well as beaches and coastal paths and provide an excellent basis for exploring and understanding the local landscape.

The rocks of Coigach provide a rich and diverse array of geological phenomena of exceptional quality, educational value and scientific importance. Together they provide an astonishing insight into the history and evolution of the Earth’s crust and of Coigach’s remarkable journey through time and across the planet, from the Archaean to the present day.

The trail leaflet will be on sale in Achiltibuie, Ullapool, Lochinver and Kylesku from the 18th April 2018 priced at £2.50.

Download your guide at

Achlochan and Rubha Dunan

Achlochan is an interesting peninsula, rich in history and with magnificent mountain views and seascapes. There are two routes to Achlochan. A path from the Piping Cafe ( the old Drill hall) takes you to the coast and the old WW1 rifle range, which is under repair.

Alternatively you can walk from Polglass if you follow the signpost from the main road. This route takes you past the ruins of an Iron Age broch. You will also see Loch Poll an Dunan which has been designated as a nationally important area of fen and wetland habitat. It is now being managed to contain the spread of phragmites (common reeds) and maintain the bio-diversity.

Both walks continue over rougher ground to the Rubha Dunan headland allowing a circular route which takes approximately 1 hour. The headland is particularly interesting for geologists.

Please remember this is croft land and used for grazing so keep dogs on leads. Dogs also disturb nesting birds. ‘


The trail has been produced in collaboration with the North West Highlands Geopark and the British Geological Survey with financial assistance from the Coigach Assynt Living Landscape Partnership Community Grants Scheme, Highland Council, Coigach Community Council and the Curry Fund of the Geologists’ Association.

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