Walk: The joy & jaw of Berwick Law

East Lothian | North Berwick | Short walk | ★★★★

[North Berwick Law]

The unmistakable rocky lump of North Berwick Law towers over the seaside resort of North Berwick in East Lothian, surrounded by otherwise flat farmland. The hill's striking, conical profile along with its accessible location has long made it a popular objective for holidaymakers and locals alike - and at only 187 metres high, a fairly easily achievable one even for little legs. The exposed summit is crowned by a whole array of paraphernalia: a concrete bunker since World War II, a whale's jawbone since 1709 (now a fibreglass replica after old ones rotted away), and the faint earthworks of a hill fort since the Iron Age. The panorama is a joy to behold, taking in a wide swathe of the Lothians, Fife and the Firth of Forth, with Bass Rock easily identifiable by its white coat of gannet droppings. Returning to the start with an anticlockwise loop around the base of the law gives good glimpses of the summit from all angles.

[Exmoor ponies graze the slopes of North Berwick Law]

📌 Walk: The joy & jaw of Berwick Law ★★★★
Start / finish at car park on the west side of the hill, off B1347 1 mi south of North Berwick town centre, G.R.: NT 553843 ///peachy.jammy.rainbow

▶ 3 km / 2 mi | ▲ 180 m | ⌚ Short | Moderate
Features: △ North Berwick Law (187 m, sub-2000')
Terrain: Paths throughout, steep in places on North Berwick Law - extremely so if you venture off the zigzagging, main route.

Route & map

Car park - North Berwick Law by southwest slopes - return nearly to base of hill - anticlockwise loop around base of hill - start

Route credit: Scotland Off the Beaten Track
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On our visit

Wildlife: Exmoor ponies on the upper slopes; quite a few dogs.
Weather: Very windy, good sunny periods and squally rain showers.

Chronological photo guide

[North Berwick Law from the start of the walk]

[On the direct ascent path]

[Looking back]

[Looking back]

[Exmoor ponies]

[Exmoor ponies above North Berwick]

[North Berwick seen from the ascent]

[Wartime defences]



[Zoom of Bass Rock]

[Replica whale jawbone]

[View inland]

[Return around the east side of the hill]

[North Berwick Law from the east side]

[Marshy ground to the northeast side of the hill]

[Final stretch below the northern slopes]


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