Starting from the car park, walk towards the railway bridge on your right and join the coastal footpath. Pass underneath the bridge, ignore the first left, and take the second left, crossing a gully then continue northwards along the path.
From here there are excellent views of the rugged coastline, cliff top grasslands and the shoreline. This area with its variety of distinct environments provides a wealth of habitats and natural resources for wildlife. Beacon Hill can also be seen in the distance, this is the highest point on the Durham coast. Beacon Hill was formed during the Permian period (295-250 million years ago) as part of the barrier reef along the Zechstein Sea. Follow the footpath sign through a gate on the left and cross a field. Continue north
through a gate in the corner of the field.
The path follows the railway line on the left. Just before a metal field gate and opposite a National Trust sign cross the railway line at the crossing point.
After climbing the steps and stile in front you will come to a field. Continue uphill through gorse bushes. Look out for the stile on the right, cross over the stile, turn right and go through a gate. It is believed that fires were lit as a beacon point to warn of impending
invasion or attack, or to warn returning ships of this hazardous part of the coastline. Follow the fence on your right and continue up to the triangulation point. Rare breed cattle are kept in this area, which can make it muddy in places. There are excellent views of the coast from here and a good place to stop for a break.
Continue a short distance northwards, then turn left and go through the gate next to the barn. There are good views of Hawthorn Dene and Hawthorn Quarry from here. About ½ mile down the lane there is a track to the left, ignore this and continue ahead. As you walk between the fields you will notice a number of surrounding farms. Agriculture was an important part of the Durham coast even though the production of coal has largely dominated the area’s economy from the 19th century. Most of the farms surrounding Easington Colliery were established in the 18th century.
At the end of the path you will come to a junction, carry straight over a stile (ignoring the left and right tracks). Keep the hedge line on the left and cross over two more stiles. You will enter a field. Continue forward and look out for the gap in the hedge opposite.
Turn left following the field boundary line around to the right. You will come to an opening on your left, ignore this and continue straight on. The paths in this section of the walk are indistinct having been ploughed over.
Cross over the remains of another stile keeping to the hedge on your left under the power lines, follow the path around to the left and then turn right through the field entrance onto Petwell Lane, look out for Hedge Sparrows, Wrens and Kestrels along this section. Take a left on reaching the metalled road. Continue towards the coast past White Gates farm on the left. Keep walking until the end of the road where there are allotments and a row of houses.
Turn right down this road keeping houses to the left and allotments on the right. You will eventually reach a junction onto Holmhill Lane. Cross over this road and walk straight ahead, following the path alongside the cemetery. Turn left at the end onto Crawlaw Road past the cemetery gates on the left. In the cemetery, there is a memorial to the miners who died in the 1951 disaster; a communal grave was created for the miners who died.
Continue along Crawlaw Road with housing on the right and allotment gardens to the left. At the end of the road, you will see the car park and an open green space, this is the site where Easington Colliery once stood. From here continue towards the sea to return to the car park from where the walk began.
- Distance: 1-5 Miles
- Grade: Moderate
- Route Surface: Off Road
- Theme: Breathtaking Views
- Theme: Heritage
- Theme: Nature
- Village Location
- Walk Distance - 4 miles / 6km