Bushwalking in Canberra

ainsliebraddon 30 November 2010 32

Hi all,

One of the things I love most about Canberra is the fact that you can see the mountains from the city, particularly those in the distance beyond Tuggeranong. The Brindabellas?

I assume it must be possible to go bushwalking / hiking in these mountains and was after some advice.

My basic question is: I would like to go on a walk into the mountains and be able to look back at the city. Is this possible?

I would like some advice on if this is an easy day trip, or is such a trek a bit more advanced? Where do I start from? How long should I allow? Is there a track? Do I need a map and compass etc?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.


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32 Responses to Bushwalking in Canberra
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Thumper Thumper 8:07 am 02 Dec 10

Beware. We have Yowies up there in the Brindies

http://www.yowieman.com.au

Ceej1973 Ceej1973 10:59 pm 01 Dec 10

Beware. We have Yowies up there in the Brindies.

p1 p1 2:11 pm 01 Dec 10

KB1971 said :

Having said all that there has been a crapload of rain since then. Might have to go for a look.

Ahh, maybe it was just a day-or-two closure. Figured I would have heard if it was closed longterm.

KB1971 KB1971 1:41 pm 01 Dec 10

p1 said :

LSWCHP said :

I would’ve said exactly the same thing, but I took my family down there about a month ago to do this. We stopped in at the visitors centre and were advised that the road from the tracking station had been washed out by recent rain. It was impassable even to 4WD, and was closed to all traffic. We were also told that the road would be out for “months”.

I hadn’t heard that. Some googling show that it is still the case. I wonder when it will be fixed? In addition to very nice bushwalking, some of the ACT’s best climbing is accessed via that road.

That was a while ago, we drove up there when we had the last blow over of snow in September & it was all open then except for the dirt track to the rock climbing lookout.

Also a mate of mine was cycle training up there in early October, did three laps.

I know for a fact Bendora Road is open, my brother in law samples water up there, so is Angle Crossing.

Having said all that there has been a crapload of rain since then. Might have to go for a look.

KB1971 KB1971 1:27 pm 01 Dec 10

I take from your user name you are based in the Inner North so you will know the local haunts in that area but there are a few others south such as Mt Taylor, Tuggeranong Hill and Mt Rob Roy.
Mt Taylor & Tuggeranong Hill are really easy but Mt Rob Roy it a little tricky to find as it is not signposted & not well known.
This is the best map I could find on the net and Google has more detail:

http://www.tams.act.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0013/13342/cnpmaprobroy.pdf

The best place to park your car would be at the corner of Templestowe Ave & Jane Sutherland Cct in Conder & then head south to Banks. This walk is about 15km with some steep terrain so be prepared. Head up to the water tower at the top of the hill in Thorn Cres in Banks & then jump the fence (the gate has access). This is the steepest bit up to Big Monks. Once up there the views over the Lanyon Valley are sensational.
From there head south but don’t take the shortcut shown on the map, keep following the track in south easterly direction & you will come to a gate. Jump the gate & follow the track. It will start heading east & then starts winding northeast up towards the peak.
You will come to another gate, this is the access to the nature park. The views south from here are stunning.
Up over the trig (not much of a view from here though), & a couple of 2’s down the hill you will find a clearing on the right, you can’t miss it on account of the northerly views across the city. It feels like you can see all the way to Sydney from this point, it’s awesome.
Keep following the track, you will come across another gate just out of a gully. Jump it & follow the track north. You will come to a T intersection underneath the powerlines, turn left & this will take you to the substation at the bottom of Tuggeranong Hill. Veer left & you will see the access road to Eaglemont Retreat & your car at the bottom of the hill.
It’s about 15km & well worth the walk/ride (I did it on my pushy).

p1 p1 12:12 pm 01 Dec 10

LSWCHP said :

I would’ve said exactly the same thing, but I took my family down there about a month ago to do this. We stopped in at the visitors centre and were advised that the road from the tracking station had been washed out by recent rain. It was impassable even to 4WD, and was closed to all traffic. We were also told that the road would be out for “months”.

I hadn’t heard that. Some googling show that it is still the case. I wonder when it will be fixed? In addition to very nice bushwalking, some of the ACT’s best climbing is accessed via that road.

Jivrashia Jivrashia 10:34 am 01 Dec 10

+1 (for the 5th time – I counted) for Mt Tennant.

You don’t need to climb the whole 700m. Actually the peak has poor visibility due to the thick forage. You can get to the first lookout after 30min walk which offers more than an adequate view of Canberra city.

troll-sniffer troll-sniffer 10:07 am 01 Dec 10

Me and my mates were conned badly in the Brindabellas. The other side of the Brindabella Valley crossing, down the road from Piccadilly Circus, and where the road climbs out towards Tumut has a peak called Mount Lickhole. I kid you not. So off we went full of anticipation as to what we might find… and all we found was scrub and rocks.

Talk about a let-down!

jenny123 jenny123 9:33 am 01 Dec 10

colourful sydney racing identity said :

watch out for wild dogs. seriously.

I agree! I was stalked by a pack of 6 while walking between Mt Tennent and Booroomba Rocks, I was shitting myself – very scary, they were huge.

I also saw 2 smaller ones in tidbinbilla, that wasnt so bad

KB1971 KB1971 8:28 am 01 Dec 10

molongloid said :

molongloid said :

KB1971 said :

@ Molongaloid, its actually called the Bullen Range, not the Tidbinbilla Range.

They’re two separate ranges. Bullen closer to Canberra.

Ahh, ahh I think I misinterpreted your comment KB1971. You mean that Bullen range is the one people mostly see from Tuggers, not the Tidbinbilla range. I go along with that.

Yup & I read that you were saying the Bullen Range is the Tidbinbilla Range….. 🙂 I have heard many people mistake the two.

LSWCHP LSWCHP 12:08 am 01 Dec 10

KB1971 said :

Booroomba Rocks.

Drive south through Tuggeranong on Drakeford Drive, this turns into Tharwa Drive, follow the signs to Adaminaby once you get to Tharwa (basically remain on the same road). About 10km out of town there is a turn to the right that takes you up to the old Honeysuckle Creek tracking station turn. Just before you get to the tracking station turn right (its signposted “Booroomba Rocks”.

I would’ve said exactly the same thing, but I took my family down there about a month ago to do this. We stopped in at the visitors centre and were advised that the road from the tracking station had been washed out by recent rain. It was impassable even to 4WD, and was closed to all traffic. We were also told that the road would be out for “months”.

The nice lady at the visitors centre told us about a great walk direct from the visitors centre up into the adjacent hills, and we did that instead. It was easy walking on well marked trails, and the kids were thrilled by the views.

I guess I’d say check on the visitors centre, and see what they recommend.

Tread softly and be safe.

JessicaNumber JessicaNumber 11:16 pm 30 Nov 10

I agree with all the suggestions above. One other useful precaution is a snake bite kit.

Another option for good views of Canberra is my favourite Majura-Ainslie loop. It takes about 5 hours to go up Majura, down the other side, over to Ainslie, over the summit and back to the starting point, plus some of those paths are almost completely overgrown, making it more like a “real” bush walk.

molongloid molongloid 9:58 pm 30 Nov 10

molongloid said :

KB1971 said :

@ Molongaloid, its actually called the Bullen Range, not the Tidbinbilla Range.

They’re two separate ranges. Bullen closer to Canberra.

Ahh, ahh I think I misinterpreted your comment KB1971. You mean that Bullen range is the one people mostly see from Tuggers, not the Tidbinbilla range. I go along with that.

ainsliebraddon ainsliebraddon 9:40 pm 30 Nov 10

Thanks everyone, this has been really helpful.

molongloid molongloid 9:35 pm 30 Nov 10

KB1971 said :

@ Molongaloid, its actually called the Bullen Range, not the Tidbinbilla Range.

They’re two separate ranges. Bullen closer to Canberra.

chris820 chris820 9:06 pm 30 Nov 10

Like molongloid said;
A fantastic resource for walking: http://members.pcug.org.au/~jevans/
jevans has done a lot of miles.
And I’ve used his website many-a-time for track beta.

Some great views of Canberra can be had from Mt Tennant, Booroomba rocks, Gibraltar Peak, The Camelback (Mt Tidbinbilla) and Mt Coree.
All of which are easily under half-day walks.

Gibraltar Peak can also be accessed from a start on Corin Dam road. That way avoiding the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve entry fee – if you’re a complete tightarse.

But if you want more of a challenge, just pick a hill and go for it.
The Mt Gudgenby summit puts up a good fight. But provides some fantastic views of the area down near Yankee Hat.

s-s-a s-s-a 8:10 pm 30 Nov 10

You’d be looking at Namadgi National Park

Most of the bushwalking sites in Namadgi don’t give views over Canberra. Booroomba Rocks and Mt Tennant would be the exceptions.

Another vote here for Camel’s Hump and the ridge line extending north of there. In pre-bushfire days there was a track leading up onto the N end of that ridge from Laurel Camp.

samson13 samson13 6:12 pm 30 Nov 10

I’d say you definitely need a map and compass.(and I’ve used a torch on occasion). You’ll almost never need to use them but it doesn’t take much to turn a quick detour, long lunch (and thus late return) or bad weather into a very difficult situation. The Namadgi map is cheap and good.

I’m a fan of the Baroomba rocks walk. Pretty simple walking with beautiful elevated views back to Canberra. Picnic dinner on the top of the cliff while watching the sunset and Canberra lights is good. Dodging roos on the way home no so great.

Franklin is an easy walk. Did this with a 2YO a couple of years back without having to carry him. Don’t know if you can see Canberra through the snow gums but has good views of the area.

Gingera is nicer than Franklin but is a lot more of a walk. Stop in to check out Pryor’s hut on the way. You can see Canberra but is getting far enough south that it isn’t a great view of Canberra but the views down into Brindabella and the south end of the ACT are damn nice. I believe your not supposed to camp within some minimum distance of the ACT border up here because of the water catchment but this can be done in a day.

Pork Hunt’s trip to Mt Coree is great but might be a bit of a mud puddle at the moment. It’s been years since I’ve seen it wet and I’m not sure how it is coping with this rain.

Closer to Canberra is Gibralter peak. Sort of hidden under the Tidbinbila range. Great, close Canberra view across Nail Bitter boulder. Bit of a classic. Road might be 2WD still but can get washed away by rain a bit. It still wouldn’t be that far to walk from the main road if you had to.

Pork Hunt Pork Hunt 6:09 pm 30 Nov 10

Spoono said :

A guy called ‘Jethro’ lookin for bushwalking buddies?? Suss as!

I hear banjos

Iknow this gorge, maybe we can go on a canoeing trip…

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