Great North Walk: Watagan Headquarters to Heaton Lookout

2 h 45 min to 4 h

7.9 km
oneway

↑ 412 m
↓ -485 m

Hard track
This scenic walk includes dramatic lookouts and time spent in moist cool forest. The walk initially travels on dirt road past Hunter and MacLean’s Lookout, before descending into the Wallis Creek catchment. Here the walk traverses underneath many cliffs before crossing Wallis Creek and arriving at Heaton Lookout. A recommended walk with car access either end. 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.
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Signs on Road near Watagan Headquarters. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Welcome to Watagan Headquarters Campsite. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Forestry/Watagan Headquarters campsite. | Photo by admin, 2008.
The open area in the Watagan Headquarters campsite. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Walking alon Bakers Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Intersection of Bakers and Glen Roads. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Walking along Bakers Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Hunter Lookout facilities. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Dunny at Hunter Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Hunter Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Signpost at Hunter Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
On Barkers Road. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Signpost near Macleans Lookout on the Great North Walk. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Macleans Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Macleans Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
GNW near Mcleans Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2008.
The GNW leading steeply. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Small Mossy Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
End of Glen Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
View from the end of Glen Road. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Trail near the ned of Glen Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
GNW among the Grass Trees in the tall forest. | Photo by admin, 2010.
A rocky creek on the Great North Walk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
GNW arrow post in a mossy valley. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Looking Up. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Walking through a long cave. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Small waterfall just after rain. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Walking among the Grass Trees. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Walking along the trail north of Forest Road. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Well signposted section of the walk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Walking along the pleasent leafy trail. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Fallen tree on The Great North Walk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Hammond Rd lookout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
View from the end of Hammonds Road. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Sign at the end of Hammond Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Clearing near the end of Hammond Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Plesent timber gate on the narrowing trail. | Photo by admin, 2010.
GNW north of Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Mossy wall north of Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Walking along the base of the cliff on the Great North Walk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Cave on the Great North Walk north of Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Bird Nest Ferns. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Rock wall just north of Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Wallis Creek Valley. | Photo by admin, 2010.
GNW arrow post in Wallis Creek Valley. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Wallis Creek on The Great North Walk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Wallis Creek on The Great North Walk. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Steps over fallen tree near Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Side creek flowing into Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Tangled vines south of Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Tall forest in Wallis Creek Valley. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Following arroes along the GNW. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track south of Wallis Creek. | Photo by admin, 2010.
End of Barniers Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Hollow tree. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Track crossing fallen tree east of Barniers Rd. | Photo by admin, 2010.
GNW west of Heaton Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
GNW sign beside Heaton Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Heaton Looout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
View From Heaton Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2010.
Heaton Lookout. | Photo by admin, 2008.
Heaton lookout. | Photo by admin, 2008.
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 (-32.9755217,151.4117966)
Mode Car (There is free parking available.)
DirectionsFrom Freemans Drive, Cooranbong.
  • Turn on to Mount Faulk Road then drive for 10.6 km
  • Keep right onto Watagan Forest Road and drive for another 3 km
  • Keep right and drive for another 110 m
  • Turn right onto Bakers Road and drive for another 5 m
Finish (-32.9836544,151.4547718)
Mode (end) Car Shuttle   Car   (There is free parking available.)
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Track Notes
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started
From the intersection (Forestry H.Q. campsite), this walk follows Bakers Road gently downhill, while keeping the GNW arrow marker on your right and the large 'Great North Walk' sign on your left. The walk continues, undulating gently for about 900m until coming to a three-way intersection with Rocky Creek Road (on the right).....
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
After another 295 m continue straight.
After another 630 m continue straight.
After another 420 m continue straight.
After another 180 m continue straight.
After another 240 m pass the toilet (30 m on your left).
After another 35 m to find the car park.
Then find the "Hunter Lookout" (55 m on your left).
Hunter Lookout
Hunter Lookout

Hunter Lookout can be found on Bakers Road, along the Great North Walk. This fenced lookout has everything you will need snack-stop, including toilets, picnic tables, chairs and wood-fired barbecues. This lookout has fantastic views over much of the Hunter region. In 2010, a series of vandalism attacks occurred on the water tank, so water is no longer available at Hunter Lookout.
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Hunter Lookout can be found on Bakers Road, along the Great North Walk. This fenced lookout has everything you will need snack-stop, including toilets, picnic tables, chairs and wood-fired barbecues. This lookout has fantastic views over much of the Hunter region. In 2010, a series of vandalism attacks occurred on the water tank, so water is no longer available at Hunter Lookout.

Then pass the picnic table (60 m on your left).
After another 25 m continue straight.
After another 440 m continue straight.
After another 390 m to find the car park.
Then pass the picnic table (30 m on your left).
Then find the "Mcleans Lookout" (45 m on your left).
Mcleans Lookout
Mcleans Lookout

McLeans Lookout offers magnificent views of the valleys in Heaton State Forest. Located on Bakers Road, this fenced lookout also has picnic facilities including tables with seats and open grassy areas.
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McLeans Lookout offers magnificent views of the valleys in Heaton State Forest. Located on Bakers Road, this fenced lookout also has picnic facilities including tables with seats and open grassy areas.

After another 30 m continue straight.
After another 560 m continue straight.
After another 65 m come to the viewpoint (15 m on your left).
After another 720 m veer right.
After another 320 m veer right.
After another 410 m continue straight.
After another 1.4 km cross the ford.
Continue straight.
After another 430 m cross the ford.
Then pass the sign.
After another 760 m continue straight.
After another 1.1 km come to the end.
A car park.
About 20 m past the end is a picnic table.
About 30 m past the end is "Heaton Lookout".
Heaton Lookout
Heaton Lookout

Heaton Lookout is one of the larger lookouts located on Heaton Road. This fenced lookout faces south-east. There are wood fired barbecues, picnic tables and a pit toilet. Heaton Lookout is a great place to stop for a snack, and the amazing view feels like a bonus. This lookout was named after Richard Heaton, a timber cutter who came to Australia as a convict. There is a water tank here, due to vandalism in the area this is not a reliable water source.
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Heaton Lookout is one of the larger lookouts located on Heaton Road. This fenced lookout faces south-east. There are wood fired barbecues, picnic tables and a pit toilet. Heaton Lookout is a great place to stop for a snack, and the amazing view feels like a bonus. This lookout was named after Richard Heaton, a timber cutter who came to Australia as a convict. There is a water tank here, due to vandalism in the area this is not a reliable water source.

About 75 m past the end is a toilet.
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Terrain
Know the Hills, grading & facilities

Great North Walk: Watagan Headquarters to Heaton Lookout


Grading
Class 4/6
Hard track
Length 7.9 km
Time 2 h 45 min to 4 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 are 2 on route, on average they are 2.8 km apart with the largest gap of 6.3 km.


Order of key facilities on route
ItemFrom StartName & link to notes
Toilet
1.8 km[toilet]
Toilet
8.1 km[toilet]
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