Walking Orkney: The Ouse, Finstown

A short walk – when the tide is low.

A view across The Ouse when the tide is out with the low hills in the background

Park in Finstown ( HY359 138) – there are several places, the car park in the centre of the village or you can park directly across from the start of The Ouse pathway, beside the Firth Primary School.

There are also several regular bus services which pass through Finstown.

The walk takes you round the edge of the tidal flats and because of that it can be slippy underfoot.

This part of the pathway is easy for all, however, it then becomes a bit trickier where raised wooden walkways have been installed to lift it out of the wet.

wooden walkways raising the path over the mud flats

These are excellent for most people, however, anyone with mobility issues may find these difficult to use as you have to step up onto them and the surface is covered with wire. This wire gives you grip on the surface which would otherwise get slimy. The wooden slats are spaced quite wide apart which does mean that it is possible to catch your foot and trip. Also some dogs may not like this surface and choose their own path.

wooden struts of walk way covered with wire mesh

Just as you are getting into your stride the ‘promoted’ path ends abruptly.

wooden walkway comes to an end with a notice telling you this is the end

From this point on you make your own way so, much more difficult for anyone with mobility issues. But for those who continue on there is still much to interest you .

Where the burn flows into the bay at this point was where you can leave the pathway and join the Grandon Road. This road may seem quiet but quite a few cars use it, so take care .

From there it is a short walk into the village . If you need something to eat and/or drink there is the shop and the Post Office or you can stop off at Leigh’s van.

Leighs van in the car park which sells burgers and lots of hot foods and drinks

Please remember that this walk takes you round tidal mud flats so that it may not always be possible to do it. There are also problems with the path for anyone with mobility issues but there is seating at the start of the pathway on both sides of the road which have excellent views.

view up the bay of Firth from the bench

The Sandwick Stroller

1 reply »

  1. Here’s my tuppenceworth on the Finstown Broch, as sent to a brochy archaeologist………….

    “You may or may not remember, a while ago, you told me that the hump along from the school on Finstown is a broch. I hadn’t realized that – it just looked like a lumpy bit by the road. It still looks like a lumpy bit by the road, but now I know it’s a broch, I do like it that there’s a war-time pill-box on top of it – a nice combination.
    Yesterday Mike and I did something we’ve been meaning to do for some time. We went for the tiny walk round the Ouse. It’s hardly any walk at all, which is why we never got round to it. I’d had it in my head to do so, as I thought it would give a different perspective on Finstown, and it does. From the mill at the end of the water, working round to the left, that hill between the hills becomes more out-standing…………it’s just a different view – a different way of seeing Finstown.
    Then there’s the broch. Suddenly the broch stands out very clearly as a mound – a mound between the two stretches of water, with the hills behind. To me, it was really striking – a big difference in how it strikes the eye.
    You’re probably aware of this, but I thought I’d mention it, in case you’re not, as even archaeologists can’t get everywhere!”

    The Ouse is sometime referred to as the Oyce and for some reason, I prefer that. Here’s another one….


    It’s all Walking Orkney!

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