26 May 2019

Canberra Day Trips: Murrumbidgee Discovery Track

| Canberra Day Trips
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Red Rocks Gorge on the Murrumbidgee Discovery Track. Photo: Lisa Martin.

Canberra Day Trips usually features destinations to discover by car, but this week we bring you a destination with a difference – one to explore on foot, right in Canberra’s backyard. Native animals, large areas of natural river vegetation, spectacular gorges, swimming and picnic spots are all waiting to be enjoyed along the 27-kilometre Murrumbidgee Discovery Track. Walk the entire length of the Murrumbidgee River from Point Hut Crossing in the south, through Pine Island and Kambah Pool and finish up at Casuarina Sands to the north, or just explore a small selection of the track. Either way, it’s a fantastic outdoor adventure that’s close to home and will cost you nothing to enjoy.

Why you’ll love it

  • It’s a fantastic outdoor adventure, with several popular barbecue and picnic areas along the way.
  • You’ll see magnificent rock formations, impressive gorges, and the cascading waters of the Murrumbidgee up close, in beautiful surroundings.
  • There is a wealth of walking trails and routes to follow.
  • Mountain bikes are welcome on many parts of the track (except the Casuarina Sands to Kambah Pool section).
  • There are several places to take a dip.

Casuarina Sands to Kambah Pool

This is the longest and most challenging section of the track, at 14km in length and some steep terrain. It’s a tough walk, but the views over the river and surrounding areas are worth it. Plan transport at both ends of the hike because it’s too far to do both ways in a day.

Kambah Pool to Pine Island

This walk is around 8 km, and the track is suitable for mountain bikes as well as walkers. There are a couple of gates – some are open, some you have to climb over. It’s reasonably flat, with only a couple of brief but not hard inclines. You’ll go past the beautiful Red Rocks Gorge, and there’s a lookout with amazing views.

Pine Island to Point Hut Crossing

This is the easiest walk of the three sections, at 4km. It’s suitable for mountain bikes. The trail is marked, and the walk is flat. The views are great the whole way, and both Pine Island and Point Hut are great spots for a picnic or a swim.

Part of the Murrumbidgee Discovery Track. Photo: Lisa Martin

Getting there

There are four main entry points to start your walk along the Murrumbidgee River, all with carparks.

  • Point Hut Crossing
  • Pine Island
  • Kambah Pool
  • Casuarina Sands

Consider doing a car shuffle before you set off on your walk (and especially if you are doing the Casuarina to Kambah Pool stretch) so that you are not faced with the prospect of a long hike to return to your vehicle. This will give you more time to explore as much of the track as you wish without having to double back.

Key details

  • There are no bins provided, so you’ll need to come prepared to take your rubbish with you.
  • Phone reception is unreliable so if you need maps, print or download them before you go.
  • There are several lovely swimming spots on the way but check the water quality conditions before you jump in for a dip.
  • More information: Trail Hiking Australia

Do you have a favourite spot along the Murrumbidgee River? We especially enjoy Red Rocks Gorge, but we’d love to hear about the places you like to visit. Let us know in the comments.

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