Balgone Heughs SoSOL
Sunday 24 March 2024

Balgone Heughs SoSOL  Sunday 24 March 2024

Balgone Heughs - photo credit: M. Atkinson

Balgone is a relatively new area for orienteering in East Lothian and was professionally mapped for us in 2022 – the longer courses will be using more distant areas of the estate. It is a wooded area with two lochs and plenty of spectacular landscape features.

We are very grateful to James Grant-Suttie and the Balgone Estate for permission to map and use this beautiful area for orienteering.

Orienteers of all abilities are welcome to join us on the day when we will have a range of courses to suit everyone.

General Information

Type of event:

South of Scotland League Event, a Regional/Ranking event.

Balgone Heughs – photo credit: M. Atkinson


  • Shorter courses are limited to the path network around the two lochs.
  • Longer courses also venture along the wooded corridor of the John Muir Way and include some steeper terrain along the great escarpment which runs east to west.
  • Please observe any out of bounds areas including private gardens of houses in the estate.

Other Users

The area is used by the general public including horse riders, cyclists and families. Please respect their right to be there at the same time as you are orienteering.


Dogs should be kept on leads as there are ground nesting birds in the area


There will be toilets at registration / download.


The courses are down a steepish slope from car parking so accessibility for buggies is difficult.


Nearest Town: North Berwick
Grid Ref: NT563824
Nearest Postcode: EH39 5LB


Parking and assembly will be at Balgone Barns just north of the competition area.
Approach from west only – this is the Balgone road junction near Carperstane at Grid Ref 556 824. This route will be signed from the crossroads on the B1347 at Grid Ref 549 828.
Drivers should not use the access lane from the north although anyone walking or cycling from North Berwick is welcome to use that route.
There will be a parking charge of £2.50 per vehicle – this will be charged to the driver in online entries.

Public Transport

The nearest public transport links are at North Berwick and you can walk, run or cycle south along the John Muir Way to Balgone.

Nearest Defibrillator:


Registration & Start Times


This will be online in advance. Entry on the Day at Registration near the car park – look for the ELO flag.

If would like advice before going out or if you think you will take over an hour please arrive and start early.

Start and Finish:

Start times are from 11 am till 1 pm. Start times will not be allocated. You should join a queue in the line for your course.

The start is located about 450 metres from parking, southwards on a footpath across a field
then down a steepish slope. Finish is located not far from start, and the return to Download is around 600 metres uphill.

Courses Close:

The courses will close at 3 pm and controls will be collected in after that.  You should aim to start your course with plenty of time to complete it.  

If would like advice before going out or if you think you will take over an hour please arrive and start early.

You must report to the Download point, whether you complete the course or not, so that we know you are not lost or injured in the area.

Course Information


The map is printed at 1:7500 with 5m contours.


SportIdent (SI) electronic timing will be used – we will have SIs for hire free of charge but there is a £30 charge if lost. Units, apart from start and finish, will be set for contactless punching.


There will be White, Yellow, Orange, Light Green, Short Green, Green, Blue and Brown courses.

Course Length / Ascent Description
White1.0km / 0mFor competitive 9-10 year olds and 11-12 year old beginners. Follows paths with a control at each choice point.
Yellow2.4km / 15mFor competitive 11-12 year olds and 13-14 year old beginners. Follows line features with controls after choice points.
Orange2.8km / 30mFor competitive 13-14 year olds and beginner adults. Controls near paths or line features.
Light Green3.5km / 70mSuitable for improving orienteers. A more challenging course with navigation away from paths.
Short Green3.8km / 70mSuitable for experienced orienteers. A very challenging course with navigation away from paths.
Green4.9km / 95mSuitable for experienced orienteers. A very challenging course with navigation away from paths.
Blue7.2km / 160mSuitable for experienced orienteers. A very challenging course with navigation away from paths.
Brown8.6km / 200mSuitable for experienced orienteers. A very challenging course with navigation away from paths.

More details about the colour coding is available on the Scottish Orienteering website.


Sheila Strain


Michael Atkinson


Ian Pyrah, ESOC

Other Information:

There will also be a free activity/course for youngsters in the field south of parking.

The White course is relatively short, so juniors of that level could also be encouraged to do the Yellow course with someone to coach them through the extra challenge and/or do the activity for juniors which will include a map-reading grid type of activity as well as a variation of a ‘string’ course.

Entry Charges

Entry is cheaper if you are a current 2024 member of a club affiliated to Scottish or British Orienteering.

Please ensure that your membership has been renewed for 2024.

Entry TypeBritish Orienteering memberScottish Orienteering memberNon‑member Late Entry
Pair of Seniors£15£16£17+£2
Pair of Juniors 
(no accompanying adults)
Junior and Parent£7£8£9+£1
Family Groups (one or more children accompanied by one or more adults – we would generally encourage families to split up into pairs!)£15£17£19+£1
Second junior course
Entries made after we have ordered maps (Monday 18 March) will be subject to a surcharge.

Safety and Risk

A comprehensive risk assessment has been carried out by the organisers, but participants take part at their own risk and are responsible for their own safety during the event:

  • Crags. There are high crags in the area, but courses have been planned to avoid these.
  • Lochs: All courses go around the two lochs, but controls will all be placed away from the edges. Blue and Brown courses also go past another pond.
  • Barbed wire: the longer courses may go near to a strand of barbed wire which will be marked with black/yellow tape.
  • Traffic: there could be occasional vehicles on the tracks. Cyclists and horses could be encountered where the John Muir Way is within the area.
  • Livestock: Horses, deer and hares frequent the area. Check for ticks after your run, and wash hands before handling food.

Medical Conditions:

If you, or anyone in your group (including juniors), have a medical condition that first-aiders or health professionals should know about in the event of accident or illness during the course of the event please print off the Medical Form, complete it fully and bring it along to the event.   You should complete a separate copy for each individual who has a medical condition.  Please leave the completed Medical Form at Event Registration.  If it is not in a labelled sealed envelope, it will be put in one and will be opened only in an emergency.  It will be shredded immediately after the event if you do not claim it back.


When entering our events your name will appear in the results section of this website and may appear in newspaper reports.
We may also take photographs at the event for publicity purposes – please let us know if you do not want us to use your photograph in this way.
Read our privacy policy.

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