Henry Head Circuit

2 h 15 min to 3 h

6.6 km
circuit

↑ 153 m
↓ -153 m

Hard track
This walk has a lovely mix of natural and war history combined within the scenic Botany Bay National Park. The track follows beaches and cliff tops as it visits World War One and Two gun and lookout stations. The side trip to the coastal cemetery is worthwhile, giving a glimpse into lives from the past. The Jennifer Street section of this circuit allows access through a section of endangered native Banksia scrub that once occupied a much larger part of the Sydney region. A varied and interesting day out in the Botany Bay National Park. Let us begin by acknowledging the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present.
Show all
Southern end of Cann Park near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Southern end of Cann Park looking at Barracks Tower. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Sandy track to Congwong Beach. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Steps down to Congwong Beach. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track down to Congwong Beach near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track down to congwong Beach. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Congwong Beach near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Congwong Beach La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Congwong Beach near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Eastern end of Congwong Beach near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Sign on Congwong Beach near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Little Congwong Beach near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track near Congwong Beach. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Track near Congwong Beach in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head Track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head Track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track towards Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track towards Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Track in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Shallow dry creek on track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track towards Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track intersection near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Intersection on Henry Head Track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Brown's Rock near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head Track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Flannel Flowers in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
View of Bare Island. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Trail near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Seat on the way to Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Flower near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
World War One fort on Henry Head Track near La Perouse . | Photo by admin, 2010.
Timber post on Henry Head Track near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
management trail near henry head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Seats at Henry Head near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
White tower on Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
White tower at Henry Head near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Battlements on Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head Fortifications near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head Fortifications near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head Fortifications near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
View along coast from Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track towards Cruwee Cove. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track towards Cruwee Cove. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Stone steps near Henry Head. | Photo by admin, 2010.
View and cliffs near Cruwee Cove. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Faint track with rubbish on Cruwee Cove. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track down to Cruwee Cove near Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Cruwee Cove looking towards bridge and Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Cruwee Cove near Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Narrow track near Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Golf Course track near Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Sign and bridge at Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Wildflowers (Pigface) on Cape Banks in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Pigface flower on Cape Banks in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Concrete steps on Cape Banks in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Cape Banks management trail. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Cape Banks management trail towards Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Road near helicopter shed in Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
World War Two bunker. | Photo by admin, 2010.
End of Pistol Club Rd near Cape Banks. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Pistol club and helicopter shed. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Locked management gate near coastal cemetery. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Coastal Cemetery near Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2007.
Pistol Club Rd near Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Jennifer Street boardwalk near golf club. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Vegetation on Jennifer Street Boardwalk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Jennifer Street Boardwalk and shelter. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Top end of Jennifer Street boardwalk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Car park on Anzac Avenue near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Anzac Parade near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Henry Head Track near Botany Bay National Park. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Footpath near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Cann Park near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Cann Park sign near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Sign down to Congwong Beach. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Southern end of Cann Park near La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Southern end of Cann Park La Perouse. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Downloads GPX PDF

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Safer Bushwalks
Tips on staying safe on track
Before you start any bushwalk ensure you;
• Tell someone you trust where you are going and what to do if you are overdue
• Have adequate equipment, supplies, skills & knowledge for the whole journey
• Consider the impact of weather forecasts, park/track closures & fire dangers
• Can respond to emergencies & call for help at any point
• Are healthy and fit enough for this journey
If not, change plans and stay safe. It is okay to delay and ask people for help.
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Getting There
Transport options and directions
Start (-33.9885577,151.2334418)
Mode Bus Car (There is free parking available.)
DirectionsFrom Southern Cross Drive, M1, Eastlakes.
  • Turn on to Wentworth Avenue Offramp then drive for 190 m
  • Keep left onto Wentworth Avenue Offramp and drive for another 2.2 km
  • Turn right onto Bunnerong Road and drive for another 3.8 km
  • At roundabout, take exit 2 onto Bunnerong Road and drive for another 1.5 km
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Track Notes
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started
From the southern end of Cann Park, this walk follows the concrete track down a series of stairs, passing the 'Congwong Beach Walk' sign on your right. This walk continues gently downhill on a sandy track for about 40m, to find the western end of Congwong Beach. Then this walk follows the beach, with the water to your right, for about 140m until coming to a three-way intersection, with the 'Henry Head/Little Congwong Beach' sign.....
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
Find the water tap at the start.
Find the Seat at the start.
Seat
Seat

2 metal mesh bench seats, 42cm high, 35cm deep and 1.8m wide with a 60cm high backrest and 20cm high arm rests.
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2 metal mesh bench seats, 42cm high, 35cm deep and 1.8m wide with a 60cm high backrest and 20cm high arm rests.

Find the Potable Water at the start.
Potable Water
Potable Water

Drinking water fountain. 90cm high with concrete base.
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Drinking water fountain. 90cm high with concrete base.

Find the toilet at the start.
Turn left.
After another 10 m turn sharp right.
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. An optional side trip to Little Congwong Beach. To start this optional side trip turn right here. On returning from this side trip turn right when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 225 m continue straight.
After another 205 m turn sharp right.
After another 245 m pass the sign (on your left).
Turn right, to head along Henry Head Walking Track.
After another 185 m pass the sign (on your left).
Veer right, to head along Henry Head Walking Track.
After another 45 m continue straight, to head along Henry Head Walking Track.
After another 370 m pass the sign (on your left).
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. An optional side trip to Browns Rock. To start this optional side trip turn right here. On returning from this side trip turn left when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
Continue straight, to head along Henry Head Walking Track.
Then pass the sign (on your left).
After another 8 m pass a seat (5 m on your left)., has no backrest.
After another 210 m (at the intersection of Henry Head Walking Track & Henry Head Fire Trail) turn right, to head along Henry Head Walking Track.
After another 325 m pass the sign (on your left).
At the intersection of Henry Head Lane & Henry Head Walking Track turn right, to head along Henry Head Lane (a service road).
After another 70 m continue straight, to head along Henry Head Lane.
After another 105 m continue straight.
After another 60 m pass the "Endeavour Light" (10 m on your right).
Then find the "Henry Head" (10 m on your right).
Henry Head
Henry Head

The Henry Head Battery is located on the northern side of the entrance to Botany Bay at Henry Head. The battery was constructed on an unfenced headland between 1892 and 1895 and operated until 1910 when it was closed down. The battery and observation posts was re-utilised during World War Two to defend against approaches to Botany Bay. The battery consisted of two disappearing guns, ammunition storage and observation posts. The underground bunker and tunnel complex consisted of vaulted ammunition storage rooms with double walls and ceilings. The doubling-up of walls and ceilings was a preventative measure meant to stop the walls from collapsing in the event of a direct hit. The battery is currently not in use. The white tower on the battery is the Endeavour Tower, not a lighthouse as such, but a red marker light nonetheless.
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The Henry Head Battery is located on the northern side of the entrance to Botany Bay at Henry Head. The battery was constructed on an unfenced headland between 1892 and 1895 and operated until 1910 when it was closed down. The battery and observation posts was re-utilised during World War Two to defend against approaches to Botany Bay. The battery consisted of two disappearing guns, ammunition storage and observation posts. The underground bunker and tunnel complex consisted of vaulted ammunition storage rooms with double walls and ceilings. The doubling-up of walls and ceilings was a preventative measure meant to stop the walls from collapsing in the event of a direct hit. The battery is currently not in use. The white tower on the battery is the Endeavour Tower, not a lighthouse as such, but a red marker light nonetheless.

After another 15 m continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Walking Track.
After another 345 m pass the "Henry Head to Cape Banks" (on your left).
After another 100 m come to the viewpoint (on your right).
Then pass a seat (on your right)., has a backrest.
After another 330 m pass the sign (on your left).
After another 90 m pass the sign (on your left).
After another 60 m pass the sign (on your left).
After another 65 m pass the sign.
After another 35 m veer right.
After another 90 m continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Walking Track.
After another 100 m veer right.
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. An optional side trip to Cape Banks. To start this optional side trip continue straight here. On returning from this side trip veer right when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 9 m turn sharp left, to head along Cape Banks Management Trail.
After another 9 m pass the "Cape Banks Aquatic Reserve" (on your right).
After another 15 m find the "Seat" (on your left).
Seat
Seat

A timber slat bench seat, 60cm high, 30cm deep and 1.8m wide with no armrests or backrest.
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A timber slat bench seat, 60cm high, 30cm deep and 1.8m wide with no armrests or backrest.

After another 380 m pass the sign (on your right).
At the intersection of Cape Banks Management Trail & Cape Banks Firetrail turn left, to head along Cape Banks Management Trail.
After another 105 m find the "World War Two Bunker" (20 m on your right).
World War Two Bunker
World War Two Bunker

This World War Two bunker is near the Westpac Helicopter Shed. This bunker consists of sheltered concrete ammunition storage rooms below, and a circular gun base above, with surrounding coastal views. There are rusted and damaged parts, so take care when exploring.
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This World War Two bunker is near the Westpac Helicopter Shed. This bunker consists of sheltered concrete ammunition storage rooms below, and a circular gun base above, with surrounding coastal views. There are rusted and damaged parts, so take care when exploring.

After another 8 m continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Management Trail.
After another 35 m (at the intersection of Cape Banks Management Trail & Cape Banks Firetrail) continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Management Trail.
After another 85 m head through/around the gate.
Continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Road.
After another 35 m pass the car park (15 m on your left).
After another 130 m pass the "Coast Hospital Cemetery" (10 m on your right).
Continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Road.
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. An optional side trip to Coast Hospital Cemetery int.. To start this optional side trip turn right here. On returning from this side trip veer right when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 160 m (at the intersection of Cape Banks Road & Coast Cemetery Management Trail) continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Road.
After another 50 m continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Road.
After another 590 m continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Road.
After another 75 m continue straight, to head along Cape Banks Road.
After another 35 m (at the intersection of Jennifer Street Boardwalk & Cape Banks Road) turn sharp right, to head along Jennifer Street Boardwalk (a footpath).
After another 65 m find the "Seat" (5 m on your right).
Seat
Seat

A timber slat bench seat, 45cm high, 32cm deep and 2.1m wide with a 38cm high backrest.
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A timber slat bench seat, 45cm high, 32cm deep and 2.1m wide with a 38cm high backrest.

After another 270 m find the "Seat" (on your left).
Seat
Seat

A timber slat bench seat, 42cm high, 31cm deep and 2.1m wide with a 38cm high backrest.
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A timber slat bench seat, 42cm high, 31cm deep and 2.1m wide with a 38cm high backrest.

Then pass the sign (on your left).
After another 25 m find the "Jennifer Street Boardwalk" (on your left).
Jennifer Street Boardwalk
Jennifer Street Boardwalk

Jennifer Boardwalk provides you with an elevated view through a rare and endangered ecological community known as the Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub. This community of native plants is protected under the Threatened Species Conservation Act. These Banksia once occupied around 5,300 hectares of land between North Head and Botany Bay in Sydney’s eastern suburbs. Currently, surviving stands totalling approximately 146 hectares have been recorded by the local government areas of Botany, Randwick, Waverley, and Manly .
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Jennifer Boardwalk provides you with an elevated view through a rare and endangered ecological community known as the Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub. This community of native plants is protected under the Threatened Species Conservation Act. These Banksia once occupied around 5,300 hectares of land between North Head and Botany Bay in Sydney’s eastern suburbs. Currently, surviving stands totalling approximately 146 hectares have been recorded by the local government areas of Botany, Randwick, Waverley, and Manly .

After another 10 m (at the intersection of Jennifer Street & Jennifer Street Boardwalk) turn right, to head along Jennifer Street (a residential road).
After another 15 m (at the intersection of Jennifer Street & Marconi Place) continue straight, to head along Jennifer Street.
After another 115 m (at the intersection of Reservoir Street & Jennifer Street) turn left, to head along Reservoir Street.
After another 125 m continue straight, to head along Reservoir Street.
After another 85 m (at the intersection of Grose Street & Reservoir Street) continue straight, to head along Grose Street.
After another 95 m (at the intersection of Grose Street & Gipps Avenue) continue straight, to head along Grose Street.
After another 90 m continue straight, to head along Grose Street.
After another 180 m (at the intersection of Grose Street & Abbe Receveur Place) continue straight, to head along Grose Street.
After another 60 m (at the intersection of Anzac Parade & Elaroo Avenue) turn left, to head along Anzac Parade (a road).
After another 60 m (at the intersection of Cape Banks Road & Anzac Parade) turn left (a footpath).
After another 90 m continue straight.
After another 60 m pass the car park (8 m on your right).
After another 20 m continue straight.
After another 280 m come to a water tap.
Continue straight.
After another 10 m turn right.
After another 20 m come to the end.

An optional side trip to Little Congwong Beach.
Turn map Directions & comments
Start heading along Little Congwong Beach Track.
After another 305 m come to the end.
"Little Congwong Beach".
Little Congwong Beach
Little Congwong Beach

Little Congwong Beach, located at La Perouse, is a sheltered sandy beach that has been described as one of the most beautiful beach oases in Sydney. Little Congwong beach has also been used for over 40 years as an unofficial and secluded nude beach. If you see any offensive behaviour please call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333000 or the Maroubra Police on 02 9349 9299. This beach is very popular on summer weekends and has limited shade in the afternoon.
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Little Congwong Beach, located at La Perouse, is a sheltered sandy beach that has been described as one of the most beautiful beach oases in Sydney. Little Congwong beach has also been used for over 40 years as an unofficial and secluded nude beach. If you see any offensive behaviour please call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333000 or the Maroubra Police on 02 9349 9299. This beach is very popular on summer weekends and has limited shade in the afternoon.

Turn around and retrace your steps back the 305 m to the main route.

An optional side trip to Browns Rock.
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
After another 305 m come to the end.
"Browns Rock".
Browns Rock
Browns Rock

Browns Rock is a popular fishing spot at La Perouse, with an unfenced shelf of rock and concrete from which to cast fishing rods. Unfortunately, this area suffers from littering - Please help by carrying out your own rubbish and a few extra bits where safe (the rangers do a great job, but it is hard to keep up).
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Browns Rock is a popular fishing spot at La Perouse, with an unfenced shelf of rock and concrete from which to cast fishing rods. Unfortunately, this area suffers from littering - Please help by carrying out your own rubbish and a few extra bits where safe (the rangers do a great job, but it is hard to keep up).

Turn around and retrace your steps back the 305 m to the main route.

An optional side trip to Cape Banks.
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
Seat (about 10 m back from the start).
Seat
Seat

A timber slat bench seat, 60cm high, 30cm deep and 1.8m wide with no armrests or backrest.
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A timber slat bench seat, 60cm high, 30cm deep and 1.8m wide with no armrests or backrest.

Find the Cape Banks Aquatic Reserve at the start.
After another 10 m cross the bridge (about 25 m long)
Continue straight.
After another 30 m find the "Cape Banks" (5 m on your left).
Cape Banks
Cape Banks

Cape Banks on the northern side of the entrance to Botany Bay, offers possibly the best view in Botany Bay National Park. From the unfenced cliff top, you can watch the power of the ocean as waves crash into the sandstone rock face below, or watch boats of all shapes and sizes, sail peacefully across the sheltered waters of the bay. If you are lucky, you can enjoy the spectacle of migrating Humpback and Southern Right whales reasonably close to shore, spouting and sometimes breaching as they make their way northward and southward in pods of three or four. The shipwreck of the SS Minmi can be seen at low tide, lying on rocks on the western side of Cape Banks. There are concrete foundations of buildings remaining on Cape Banks, from when World War Two servicemen were stationed there.
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Cape Banks on the northern side of the entrance to Botany Bay, offers possibly the best view in Botany Bay National Park. From the unfenced cliff top, you can watch the power of the ocean as waves crash into the sandstone rock face below, or watch boats of all shapes and sizes, sail peacefully across the sheltered waters of the bay. If you are lucky, you can enjoy the spectacle of migrating Humpback and Southern Right whales reasonably close to shore, spouting and sometimes breaching as they make their way northward and southward in pods of three or four. The shipwreck of the SS Minmi can be seen at low tide, lying on rocks on the western side of Cape Banks. There are concrete foundations of buildings remaining on Cape Banks, from when World War Two servicemen were stationed there.

After another 50 m veer left.
After another 65 m continue straight.
After another 175 m come to the end.
Turn around and retrace your steps back the 360 m to the main route.

An optional side trip to Coast Hospital Cemetery int..
Turn map Directions & comments
At the intersection of Coast Cemetery Management Trail & Cape Banks Road Start heading along Coast Cemetery Management Trail (a vehicle track).
After 65 m head through/around the gate.
After another 25 m find the "Pinch Point" (on your left).
Pinch Point
Pinch Point

Metal bollard pinch points at edge of carpark, beside gate. The gap between the bollards is 48cm they are 85cm high.
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Metal bollard pinch points at edge of carpark, beside gate. The gap between the bollards is 48cm they are 85cm high.

Then come to the "Wheelchair Rough".
Wheelchair Rough
Wheelchair Rough

A 20m section of the trail has exposed sandstone cobbles.
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A 20m section of the trail has exposed sandstone cobbles.

After another 75 m come to the end.
About 35 m past the end is "Coast Hospital Cemetery".
Coast Hospital Cemetery
Coast Hospital Cemetery

The Coast Hospital Cemetery on the northern side of Botany Bay was first established in the early 1880’s and is now home to as many as 2000 graves. It serviced the Coast (Prince Henry) Hospital, originally a smallpox hospital. People who died of smallpox were required to be buried at the hospital grounds. The hospital was built far enough from the city to provide quarantine and for this reason, the hospital in time became an infectious diseases hospital, also treating patients with influenza, bubonic plague, typhoid fever and leprosy. Unfortunately, the cemetery has at times fallen into disrepair and some of the headstones are difficult to read. Many of the graves are unmarked. On the eastern edge of the cemetery is an information sign explaining that in the area are also buried the ancestral remains of the La Perouse Aboriginal people returned from museums. A place steeped in history and worthy of respect.
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The Coast Hospital Cemetery on the northern side of Botany Bay was first established in the early 1880’s and is now home to as many as 2000 graves. It serviced the Coast (Prince Henry) Hospital, originally a smallpox hospital. People who died of smallpox were required to be buried at the hospital grounds. The hospital was built far enough from the city to provide quarantine and for this reason, the hospital in time became an infectious diseases hospital, also treating patients with influenza, bubonic plague, typhoid fever and leprosy. Unfortunately, the cemetery has at times fallen into disrepair and some of the headstones are difficult to read. Many of the graves are unmarked. On the eastern edge of the cemetery is an information sign explaining that in the area are also buried the ancestral remains of the La Perouse Aboriginal people returned from museums. A place steeped in history and worthy of respect.

Turn around and retrace your steps back the 155 m to the main route.
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Terrain
Know the Hills, grading & facilities

Henry Head Circuit


Grading
Class 4/6
Hard track
Length 6.6 km
Time 2 h 15 min to 3 h
Quality of track Rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely (4/6)
Gradient Very steep (4/6)
Signage Minimal directional signs (4/6)
Infrastructure Limited facilities (such as cliffs not fenced, significant creeks not bridged) (4/6)
Experience Required Moderate level of bushwalking experience recommended (4/6)
Weather Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)

Some facilities on route
Toilet: There is one 20 m from the start.

Seat: There are 6 on route, on average they are 940 m apart with the largest gap of 1.7 km.


Order of key facilities on route
ItemFrom StartName & link to notes
Seat
15 mSeat
Toilet
20 m[toilet]
Seat
1.3 km[seat]
Seat
2.5 km[seat]
Seat
3.3 kmSeat
Seat
5 kmSeat
Seat
5.3 kmSeat
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