This circuit starts in Blackheath and heads down into the Grand Canyon and Rodriguez Pass. The track goes through a wide variety of ecosystems and changing views along the way. An interesting part of this walk is the change in mood of the cliffs that surround the Grose Valley as the light conditions change throughout the day.
(open in app)
Cross sectional view of the Blackheath Station to Junction Rock Loop (via Grand Canyon and Popes Glen) bushwalking track
Analysis and summary of the altitude variation on the Blackheath Station to Junction Rock Loop (via Grand Canyon and Popes Glen) bushwalking track
Overview of this walks Grading - Based on the AS 2156.1 - 2001
These details are new. This new feature still requires more testing and refining. Please use the 'Walker Feedback' for report specific issues. Please e-mail Matt if you have any general comments. Hope you find it helpful.
Under this standard, a walk is graded based on the most difficult section of the walk.
8 hrs 30 mins
Very steep (4/6)
Quality of track
Rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely (4/6)
Minimal directional signs (4/6)
Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)
Limited facilities (such as cliffs not fenced, significant creeks not bridged) (4/6)
*This summary of grading information is new and still in testing
Some more detail of this walks Grading
Here is a bit more details explaining the grading looking at sections of the walk. Gradient
8km of this walk has short steep hills and another 6km is very steep. Whilst another 2.8km is flat with no steps and the remaining 2.1km has gentle hills with occasional steps.
Quality of track
9km of this walk follows a formed track, with some branches and other obstacles and another 5km follows a rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely. Whilst another 3.2km follows a smooth and hardened path and the remaining 1.1km follows a clear and well formed track or trail.
8km of this walk has directional signs at most intersection and another 6km has minimal directional signs. The remaining (4.1km) is clearly signposted.
Around 9km of this walk requires some bushwalking experience, whilst the remaining 9km requires no previous bushwalking experience.
Around 17km of this walk is not usually affected by severe weather events (that would unexpectedly impact safety and navigation), whilst the remaining 850m is affected by storms that may impact your navigation and safety.
7km of this walk has limited facilities (such as not all cliffs fenced) and another 6km has limited facilities (such as cliffs not fenced, significant creeks not bridged). The remaining (5km) is close to useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats).
Online bushwalking Magazine. Download the full magazine for free Bushwalk Australia eMag The Online Magazine is produces by the community at bushwalk.com and the Wildwalks team Bushwalk.com Australia's most active bushwalking forum - Check it out. Happy Reading. Matt :)
Int. Braeside Service Trail and Braeside Picnic Area Track: Moderate - footpath,road,road
Length = 2.86 km
Time = 52 mins
Climb = 24 m
Descent = -125 m
From the top of the station steps, this walk heads towards the Great Western Highway and Gardners Inn. The walk turns right down a flight of stairs, then turns left across the Great Western Highway at the pedestrian crossing. Turn right: From the pedestrian crossing, this walk heads towards Gardners Inn, keeping the road to the right. The walk continues along the footpath, turning left opposite the Ivanhoe Hotel, onto Govetts Leap Rd. The walk continues down Govetts Leap Rd to the intersection with Prince Edward St. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads west along Govetts Leap Rd for a block, to the intersection with Boreas St. This walk turns right, down Boreas St to the intersection with Braeside St. Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the green signpost to 'Braeside Walk' along the houses on the right-hand of Braeside Street. This walk turns right at the 'Braeside Walk' sign. The walk continues for approximately 70m to the intersection with another service trail. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads down the management track, to the signposted intersection after a parking area on the left.
Int. Braeside Service Trail and Braeside Picnic Area
Neates Glen car park Track: Moderate - servicetrail,road,road
Length = 1.92 km
Time = 36 mins
Climb = 58 m
Descent = -14 m
Veer right: From the 'Braeside Walk' signposted intersection, this walk leaves the 'Braeside Walk' sign behind on the left as it continues along the service trail towards a waterfall. The track quickly swings left, passing the waterfall (on the left of the track) and continuing up the hill for approximately 400m. The track then tends right for approximately 100m, where is passes a service trail (which heads north). This walk continues south for approximately 600m to a large intersection. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads towards the road, passing a house on the left. The walk continues along James Rd to then turn left onto Evans Lookout Rd. The road tends right, to then pass Victoria Rd on the right. Shortly after Victoria Rd, this walk comes to the Bush Rock Cafe (now closed) on the left. Continue straight: From the Bush Rock Cafe(now closed), this walk heads along the road leaving the cafe behind on the left. The track continues down the road for a short time, passing Somerset Ave on the left, to then come to Neates Glen car park on the right.
Neates Glen car park
Neates Glen car park sign Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 639 m
Time = 18 mins
Climb = 13 m
Descent = -151 m
Veer right: From Neates Glen car park, this walk heads down the stairs following the 'Grand Canyon Track' signs. The track zigzags many times down the hillside, with the surrounding vegetation becoming more like a rainforest, before the track comes to a railing. From this railing, the track winds down more stairs to a second railing that crosses over a creek. The track continues to wind down the right side (with creek on the left) of the canyon. The track follows the creek down past a few mossy overhangs of rock to cross a boardwalk bridge before the canyon opens up. The canyon opens onto a densely vegetated area which leads the track to a creek crossing and a sign pointing back up to 'Neates Glen carpark '.
Alt = 931 m
Neates Glen, Blue Mountains NP, is a deep little valley with a creek running through it. Neates Glen is part of the Grand Canyon Track and offers a nice sample of rainforest before entering the Grand Canyon itself.
Neates Glen car park sign
Rotunda Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 542 m
Time = 14 mins
Climb = 31 m
Descent = -53 m
Continue straight: From the sign, this walk heads away from the creek and car park, following a short section of a rock shelf to round the corner of the hill. The track contours around the hill for a little while passing under a few rock overhangs, before winding steeply down the hill into the canyon. The track heads down the cliffs by stairs to a signposted intersection in front of a sandy rock overhang, the Rotunda.
Alt = 848 m
The Rotunda, Blue Mountains NP, is an area on Greaves Creek where the cliff has been carved out to form an overhang, over a sand beach within the Grand Canyon. The Rotunda is a great area for a rest and a snack, especially on a hot day.
Int. Grand Canyon and Rodriguez Pass Tracks Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 1.58 km
Time = 45 mins
Climb = 116 m
Descent = -192 m
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the sign to 'Evans Lookout', winding around the side of the canyon under the rock overhangs. The track soon passes through a small rockfall tunnel, and then passes behind a waterfall to continue around the railed canyon track for approximately 500m, coming to a railing bridge in front of another waterfall. Continue straight: From the waterfall, this walk continues to contour around the canyon wall, keeping it on the right of the track. The track does so for quite some time before winding down deeper into the canyon after rounding a hill. The track winds down to a signposted intersection. From here, the track crosses the creek a few times before turning left at a rock overhang then crossing the creek again. The track quickly winds through the creek before passing over a bridge and continuing down the canyon. After approximately 200m, the track winds past a pool in the creek to then come to a signposted rock in a creek.
Int. Grand Canyon and Rodriguez Pass Tracks
Beauchamp Falls Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 376 m
Time = 16 mins
Climb = 12 m
Descent = -100 m
Turn right: From the intersection, the walk follows the signs to 'Rodriguez Pass' around the canyon side, with the creek on the left. After about 200m, the track crosses the creek. The walk follows the white arrows painted on the rocks winding down between, around and under large boulders for approximately 100m. The track then heads out of the pass, keeping close to the cliff line before winding down the hill to Beauchamp Falls.
Alt = 683 m
Beauchamp Falls, Blue Mountains NP, is a beautiful set of falls, split by the rock in the centre of the creek. The falls are created by Greaves Creek, which comes out of the Grand Canyon, above. The falls are approximately 10m tall, with rocks at the base.
Govetts and Greaves Flats Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 1.78 km
Time = 58 mins
Climb = 10 m
Descent = -309 m
Continue straight: From Beauchamp Falls, this walk heads down the hill keeping the valley on the right. The track winds through and around boulders to then meander with the hillside. The track winds for some time before descending more steeply, passing a section of rock overhangs which litter the ground with blocks of sandstone. The track passes this area and continues more steeply to a railed section of stairs which drop to a creek, which it crosses to the other side. Continue straight: From the creek bank, this walk crosses to the other side of the creek. The track then turns left, heading downstream, following blue signposts and white arrows down the valley. The track soon passes a boulder with a large plank underneath it, set up as a seat, before passing a large mossy boulder. Approximately 300m on, the track passes another large mossy boulder with a white arrow at the bottom of the stairs. The track then continues down the hill, crossing the creek to a small clearing next to the creek, in which the track turns right and undulates across the hillside. The track drops into a few creek beds before climbing down a few stairs to an intersection at a campsite on the right.
Govetts and Greaves Flats
Junction Rock Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 1.52 km
Time = 30 mins
Climb = 31 m
Descent = -60 m
Continue straight: From the intersection to the camp area, this walk heads downstream along the creek flats, below on the right of the track. The track then leaves the creek flats to wind and undulate higher on the hillside for approximately 600m, passing a few clearings with fireplace on the left. The track passes a brown arrow with 'Horse Track' scratched into it, and soon after comes to an intersection with a sign, with an arrow pointing back to 'Grand Canyon'. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads downstream following the sign to 'Junction Rock'. The track soon passes a small clearing before climbing higher on the creek bank. After some time undulating, the track comes back onto the creek flats and continues to a section of cliffs on the left. The cliffs are passed by the track across the rockshelf next to a pool in the creek. The track soon turns left to Junction Rock, in the middle of the creek after the rock shelf.
Alt = 361 m
Junction Rock, Blue Mountains NP, is a rock situated in the middle of the Govetts Leap Brook and Govetts Creek junction. The rock is signposted, giving directions to Evans Lookout, Neates Glen, Acacia Flats and the Blue Gum Forest. Junction Rock is a great place for lunch and a swim in summer.
Bottom of Govetts Leap falls Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 2.35 km
Time = 1 hr 15 mins
Climb = 390 m
Descent = -22 m
Turn left: From Junction Rock, the walk follows the 'Govetts Leap' sign, soon crossing the brook. The track then follows the brook for approximately 150m, to another creek crossing. The track continues, with the creek now on its left, for approximately 60m, before crossing back to the other bank. The track continues for approximately 1km with the creek to the right, and undulates steeply in sections between magnificent waterfalls. A section of track traverses a rock shelf for a short stretch, before continuing to wind up and down (with the creek to the right) to a few sets of steeply-cut stairs. From these, the walk continues to wind over hills to a creek crossing. The track then heads up the spur, winding between views of waterfalls, before tending left further up the hill. The walk leads up the winding steps for some time, until crossing the creek at the bottom of a waterfall cascading off the large cliffs - Govetts Leap falls.
Govetts Leap (falls)
Alt = 894 m
Govetts Leap, is a waterfall in the Blue Mountains National Park. The fall is fed by Govetts Leap Brook which runs over the cliff into the Grose Valley. The falls are best viewed from Govetts Leap and Barrow Lookouts. Leap is a scots dialect word for cataract or waterfall.
Bottom of Govetts Leap falls
Govetts Leap Lookout Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 606 m
Time = 42 mins
Climb = 305 m
Descent = -61 m
Continue straight: From the bottom of Govetts Leap Falls, this walk heads north-west, following the blue signs up the hill. The track zigzags its way steeply up to a wall of rock covered by moss, ferns and grasses. The track passes along the base of this cliff to a metal staircase, passing through the rock. The track continues to wind steeply below the cliffline, passing two lookouts before coming to the signposted intersection. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the sign to 'Govetts Leap carpark' up the stairs. The walk zigzags up the hill before tending left to the signposted intersection. Turn left: From the intersection, this walk heads across the grassed area towards a platform structure. The walk climbs some stairs onto Govetts Leap Lookout, with its great views and sandstone monuments.
Govetts Leap Lookout
Alt = 975 m
Govetts Leap Lookout is named after the first European man to have enjoyed this view, William Govett, as an assistant surveyor in June 1831. Govetts Leap Lookout offers wonderful views over the Grose Valley and the spectacular Bridal Falls. The word `leap` is an old Scottish word meaning waterfall. The lookout is easily accessed from the car park, there are also toilets[fac=8007] and picnic shelters[fac=8012] nearby.
Govetts Leap Lookout
Horseshoe Falls Lookout Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 336 m
Time = 11 mins
Climb = 23 m
Descent = -62 m
Turn around: From Govetts Leap Lookout, this walk heads down the stairs at the edge of the lookout, keeping the valley to the right. The walk then crosses a grassed area to a well-signposted intersection on the edge of the tree line. Turn left: From the intersection, this walk heads down some stairs, keeping the valley to the right. The walk turns right over a bridge, continuing around the hillside to drop down onto a viewing area and intersection. Veer left: From the intersection, this walk heads down steep stairs, keeping the valley to the right. The track then winds along the cliff top until coming to an intersection, near Horseshoe Falls Lookout.
Horseshoe Falls Lookout
Alt = 901 m
Horseshoe Falls Lookout, Blue Mountains National Park, is a small fenced lookout. There are views down to Horseshoe Falls and across the Grose Valley.
Horseshoe Falls Lookout
Int. Popes Glen Trk and Pulpit Rock Trk Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 135 m
Time = 4 mins
Climb = 10 m
Descent = -26 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads along the cliff top towards Horseshoe Falls, with the valley below to the right. The track winds for some time around the hillside, to a lookout on the right, before continuing around to a railing some steep stairs. The stairs lead to Popes Glen Creek, where the track continues through the ferns to meet a street sign.
Int. Popes Glen Trk and Pulpit Rock Trk
Int. Popes Glen Trk and Boyd Bch Trk Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 306 m
Time = 7 mins
Climb = 21 m
Descent = -15 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the sign to 'Popes Glen' keeping the creek below on the right. The track continues for approximately 100m, rising to the left of a prominent rock feature. The walk passes another track on the right (with access to the creek), then continues to rise past the rock feature (on the right - The rock feature has a trail to its top.) This walk continues from the rock feature, heading down the hill to a signposted intersection.
Int. Popes Glen Trk and Boyd Bch Trk
Boyd Beach Optional sidetrip: Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 37 m
Time = 1 mins
Climb = 0 m
Descent = -3 m
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk heads down the hill following the 'Boyds Beach' sign (under the bush). The walk winds down the rocky steps for approximately 40m to Boyd Beach. (Retrace your steps back to the main track, then continue straight to continue along this walk.)
Alt = 923 m
Boyd Beach, Blue Mountains National Park, is a small sandy bank on Popes Glen Creek. The beach is a quiet spot with nice ferns and shade. The beach is a short distance from the Popes Glen track.
Int. Popes Glen Trk and Boyd Bch Trk
Blackheath Station Track: Moderate - bushtrack,footpath,footpath,footpath
Length = 3.3 km
Time = 1 hr 15 mins
Climb = 210 m
Descent = -75 m
Turn left : From the intersection, this walk heads up the hill, following the arrow on the sign pointing to 'Blackheath'. The track continues above the creek (on the right) for some time, then crosses a bridge so that the creek is now on the left. The walk crosses a second bridge, then continues for some time up a rocky hill to an intersection below power lines, with a bridge below on the right. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads up the hill, keeping the creek below on the right. The walk soon crosses the creek at a bridge, continuing along the other side to a small waterfall (on the left). The track then continues up the hill for for a short time, passing an intersection (with access tracks to Clarence Rd). The track continues to head up the hill for approximately 300m to the intersection with Dell St. Veer left: From the intersection, this walk heads down Dell St, keeping the bush to the left of the road and houses to the right. The walk soon passes Cleopatra St on the right and continues along Dell St to the intersection with Gipps Lane, on the right (where Dell St changes name to Wills St). Turn right: From the intersection, this walk heads along Gipps Lane, passing a large wooden house to the right of the road. The road tends left onto Robertson Lane which then becomes Wills St. The walk follows Wills Street for sometime to turn left onto Inconstant St and then right onto Gardiner Cres. Gardiner Cres is followed to the Great Western Highway, where there is a petrol station on the left. From here, this walk turns left to follow the Great Western Highway, keeping the petrol station on the left, as the walk heads towards the Gardners Inn pub. This walk continues to the pedestrian crossing, opposite Blackheath Station steps. Turn right: From the pedestrian crossing, this walk crosses the Great Western Highway to turn right up the covered station steps. The walk follows the railway bridge to the top of the station staircase.
Fire Danger This walk passes Central Ranges fire area which currently has a LOW MODERATE rating and No fire ban in place. (Tomorrow the Fire Danger Rating is LOW MODERATE, No fire ban.) (Downloaded 5 years ago) This walk passes Greater Sydney Region fire area which currently has a LOW MODERATE rating and No fire ban in place. (Tomorrow the Fire Danger Rating is LOW MODERATE, No fire ban.) (Downloaded 5 years ago) Please Note: Each park may have its own fire ban, this rating is only valid for today and is based on information from the RFS Please check the RFS Website for more information.
Blue Mountains National ParkLink to official closures and fire bans page Attracting over 3 million visitors annually, Blue Mountains National Park holds some of Australia's most spectacular and diverse wilderness areas. Explore the Grose Valley, with its sheer sandstone cliffs, waterfalls and scenic walking, or enjoy the famous views of the Three Sisters. Easy access makes a day trips very worthwhile, but with such diversity it would be great to stay in one of the many B&B's and spend a few days soaking up the region. Region: Sydney & Surrounds Park feesCampingFacilities Current Park Closure information for Blue Mountains National Park Closure information last downloaded Sunday 27th of September 2015 07:00 AM Closed areas: Grand Canyon walking track The Grand Canyon walking track will be closed from Wednesday 14 October 2015 to mid-June 2016. The closure is necessary to allow work to continue on improving the walking track. Access for canyoners will be on weekends only. Access from Evans Lookout via Beauchamp Falls to the Grose Valley will remain open. Evans Lookout carpark, Loop carpark, and Neates Glen carpark will remain open. Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, please contact NPWS Blue Mountains Heritage Centre on (02) 47878877 or visit the NSW National Parks safety page for park safety guidelines.
Closed areas: Waratah Native Gardens Waratah Native Gardens picnic area is closed for maintenance. This includes the Gorge Walking track. No access to the area is permitted.Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, please contact NPWS Hawkesbury area office on (02) 4588 2400 or visit the NSW National Parks safety page for park safety guidelines.
Closed areas: Prince Henry cliff walk, Leura Blue Mountains City Council wishes to advise that Prince Henry cliff walk between Majestic lookout and the junction with the Leura Cascades walk is currently closed due to a landslip. Detours will be in place and clearly signposted around the affected area. Access from the Leura picnic area to the cascades is unaffected. For more information, please contact Blue Mountains City Tourism on 1300 653 408 or Blue Mountains Heritage Centre on (02) 4787 8877, or visit the NSW National Parks safety page for park safety guidelines.
Closed areas: Butterbox Swamp track The traditional access to Butterbox Canyon via the endangered swamp is now closed and rehabilitated. No access permitted. Canyoners should use the new track provided. Temporary signage is in place. Penalties apply for non-compliance. For more information, please contact Blue Mountains Heritage Centre on (02) 4787 8877 or visit the NSW National Parks safety page for park safety guidelines.
Closed areas: Claustral canyon access change Access to Claustral canyon via the previous route across private land at Mount Tomah is no longer possible due to landholders denying access. Canyoners should respect the rights of Mount Tomah residents and avoid using private land. Alternative access from the west side of Mount Bell has been identified. For more information, please contact the Blue Moauntains Heritage Centre on (02) 4787 8877, open seven days 9am to 4.30pm, or visit the NSW National Parks safety page for park safety guidelines.
Closed areas: Cahills lookout - Katoomba As a result of a recent bushfire, Cahills lookout remains closed until further notice. For more information, please contact Blue Mountains City Council on (02) 4780 5000.
Closed areas: Waratah Native Gardens Waratah Native Gardens Some areas of this park are closed due to a major landslip event occurring across The Gorge Walking Track. Closed areas include The Gorge Walking Track in the Blue Mountains National Park. A full assessment is underway to determine the extent of damage and to ensure the area is made safe. The Gorge Walking Track is closed at the entry trackhead however the Waratah Native Gardens Day Use and Picnic Area located off Valley Ridges Road Berambing (west of Bilpin) has now been reopened. This closure may be extended and any extension will be posted as soon as possible. For more information, please contact NPWS Heritage Centre on (02) 4787 8877, open seven days 9am to 4.30pm, or visit the NSW National Parks safety page for park safety guidelines