COVID-19 has changed lots of things we do. And as we re-open the majority of our facilities and welcome more of you back in Phase 3, we need your help to do it safely. Please check what’s open before you travel; enjoy your visit safely by following NHS and Scottish Government guidance; take your litter home with you; and follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
At this location:
- The car park is open and normal charges (if any) now apply.
Forestry work will be taking place in Monaughty Forest until 31 October. The Douglas Fir Avenue Trail is not affected but please be aware if accessing beyond the marked trail and obey all on site signage.
Wind along tranquil trails to the perfect picnic spot
Discover great trails through peaceful mixed woodland that includes statuesque, 100 year-old Douglas firs as tall as Nelson's Column. They were the first trees to be planted here by the Forestry Commission when we took over Torrieston in the 1920s. Today they are nearly 165 feet (50 metres) tall.
As you explore, look out for nibbled pinecones left by red squirrels and watch for roe deer amongst the trees early and late in the day. You might also spot otter pawprints or their distinctive black spraint (a naturalist’s word for otter poo!) on the banks of the Black Burn.
Picnic beside the dark waters of the Black Burn – keeping an eye out for salmon and otters – or climb gently through the woods in search of red squirrels and stunning views. Look across the Vale of Pluscarden to Pluscarden Abbey as you walk up into the woods. It’s the only medieval monastery in Britain inhabited by a working order of Benedictine monks.
The coastal forest at Roseisle is a great place for a walk or cycle. There's a sandy beach, play and barbecue equipment, toilets and a wildlife hide too.
Black Burn Trail
A gentle wander through open pinewoods to the Black Burn. Plenty of places to rest and picnic.
Wide, firm and smooth gravel surface throughout. Generally flat with some short moderate slopes. Some parts may be slightly muddy. Includes a quiet road crossing and bridge 1.2m wide.
Allow ¾ hour
Wind your way through open sweet-scented pinewoods, crossing two bridges over the Black Burn. Let the stresses of the day trickle away as you rest beside its gently flowing, treacle-dark waters. There’s a lovely spot for a picnic beside the second bridge – which is a great place to play Poohsticks too!
The Fieldfare Trust has a Phototrail showing details of this route.
The trail starts across the road from the car park – take care crossing the road. Follow the white waymarkers.
Douglas Fir Avenue Trail
A perfect combination of beech wood, pine forest and elegant Douglas firs, with some great views across the Moray countryside.
Uneven gravel and earth surface with exposed tree roots. Some fairly steep slopes and steps. Parts may occasionally be muddy.
Allow 1 hour
This trail leads you out under an elegant canopy of mature pine and Douglas fir, beside rolling grassy fields. Look across the valley as you go to spot Pluscarden Abbey.
Explore on horseback
A great place for horse riding with plenty of lesser tracks and trails to discover.
Facilities & access
You'll find refreshments, shops and toilets at nearby Elgin, Forres and Kinloss.
Stay the Night
For the remainder of 2020, motorhomes and campervans will be allowed to park overnight at this car park.
This is part of a national trial open to self-contained vehicles only. Motorhomes and campervans can stay for one night only at a time between 6pm and 10am. Camping and overnight parking of cars is not allowed.
Before you visit, please read our Stay the Night guidance, terms and conditions:
From Elgin: Take the B9010 Dallas road. After 1 mile (1.6 km) turn right onto the Pluscarden minor road. The car park in on the right after 2½ miles (4 km).
From Forres: Take the B9010 Rafford/Dallas road. After 4 miles (6.4 km) turn left onto the Pluscarden minor road. The car park is on the left after 2 miles (3.2 km).
IV30 8TJ is the nearest postcode.
Get in touch
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