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Bushwalking track notes, photographs, maps and more for Girrakool to Patonga Overnight are found in each of the tabs below
Girrakool to Patonga Overnight
Time: 2 Days Walking time
Please allow extra time to rest and to explore
6.8 km W of Gosford
Length: 24.8 km Walk Length
As this is a One Way walk, the 24.8 km only includes the walking distance from the start to the end point
Brisbane Water National Park
Climb: 1083 m Total Climbing
This walk has a total cumulative climb of 1083 m, this is the total of the elevation gains made in each of the walks uphill sections
There is car access and parking near the start and end of this walk There is a bus stop within 2km of the end of this walk There is a ferry stop near the end of this walk
Style: One way
Track: Hard

This overnight walk explores the main ridge of Brisbane Water National Park. Starting at Girrakool picnic area in the north, this track heads over Scopas Peak, with some excellent views over Mooney Mooney creek, and then over Mt Wondabyne, further south. Much of this walk follows the Great North Walk, and it uses a campsite at the base of Mt Wondabyne. There are bus and ferry services from Patonga. (open in app)


Today's Fire rating
LOW MODERATE (No fire ban)
  Bushwalking track notes photographs, maps and camping spots for Girrakool to Patonga Overnight

Map of Walk

Location

                Sponsor of Girrakool to Patonga Overnight bushwalking tracknotes
Map of Girrakool to Patonga Overnight
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Map Scale 1 km
Girrakool picnic area car park
Int of Picnic Area and Girrakool Loop tracks
Int of Picnic Area and Girrakool Loop tracks
Illoura Lookout
Piles Creek Waterfall
Int of Girrakool and Camp Kariong tracks
Int of Girrakool and Piles Ck lookout tracks
Int of Girrakool and Piles Ck lookout tracks
Monolith Cave
Rat Gully Lookout
Int of Patonga Ferry and Girrakool tracks
Tributary Crossing
Scopas Peak
GNW intentions book
Int of GNW and Gosford Rifle Range trail
Int of GNW and Wondabyne Station Trail
Myron Brook crossing
Kariong Brook crossing
Int of the Great North Walk and Patonga service trail
Int of GNW and Thommos Loop trail
Int of GNW and Mullet Creek Trail (east)
Int of GNW and Mullet Creek Trail
Int of Great North Walk and Mt Wondabyne Peak tracks
Int of Great North Walk and Mt Wondabyne Peak tracks
Mt Wondabyne Campsite
Int of Tunnel Track and Mt Wondabyne trail
Int of Rocky Ponds Trail and Tunnel Track
Int of GNW and Tunnel Trail
Int of Hawkesbury Track and Dillons Trail
Woy Woy landfill view
Int of Hawkesbury track near Patonga Creek
Rock Platform
Int of Hawkesbury track and Van Dahls rest area track
Int of Hawkesbury track and Sani Depot Trail
Rock platform intersection
Int of Patonga and Girrakool tracks
Int of Great North Walk and Patonga Creek tracks
Int of Rest Area and Girrakool tracks
Int of Great North Walk and Patonga Dr
Int of Warrah Trig Station Rd and Patonga Drive track
Int Warrah Trig Rd trail and Warrah Trig Station Rd
Warrah car park
Warrah Trig Station
Warrah Lookout intersection
Warrah Lookout intersection
Int of Pearl Beach / Patonga fire trail and Patonga track
Broken Bay View
Eastern end of Patonga Beach
Warrah Reserve boat ramp
Starting point for this hiking track: Girrakool picnic area car park

Base maps are used under licence and is © Department of lands   Panorama Avenue Bathurst 2795   www.lands.nsw.gov.au

Maps that cover the walk area (please always carry maps of the area)

Print a map and track notes here
 Gunderman 1:25 000 Map Series NSW-91313S 
 Gosford 1:25 000 Map Series NSW-91312S 
 Broken Bay 1:25 000 Map Series NSW-91301N 
 Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park Tourist Map 1:40 000 Map Series CMA Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park Tourist Map 
 Gosford 1:100 000 Map Series 9131 
 Sydney 1:100 000 Map Series 9130 

Photo Gallery

 
Girracool Picnic Area
 
Girracool Picnic Area +
 
Illoura Lookout view
 
Illoura Lookout view +
 
waterfall at Piles Creek
 
waterfall at Piles Creek +

 
Piles Creek lookout
 
Piles Creek lookout +
 
Rock Flats
 
Rock Flats +
 
Twisted tree south of Scopas Peak
 
Twisted tree south of Scopas Peak +

 
view of mooney mooney creek
 
view of mooney mooney creek +
 
Kariong Brook Water fall
 
Kariong Brook Water fall +
 
view of Woy Woy
 
view of Woy Woy +

 
Rock Flats
 
Rock Flats +
 
Warrah Trig Station carpark
 
Warrah Trig Station carpark +
 
path down towards headland
 
path down towards headland +

 
View of Barrenjoey Lighthouse from Warrah Lookout
 
View of Barrenjoey Lighthouse from Warrah Lookout +
 
Near the bottom of Patonga Track
 
Near the bottom of Patonga Track +
 
across to Patonga boat ramp
 
across to Patonga boat ramp +

Terrain

Cross sectional view of the Girrakool to Patonga Overnight bushwalking track

Cross Section of the Girrakool to Patonga Overnight bushwalking track



Analysis and summary of the altitude variation on the Girrakool to Patonga Overnight bushwalking track

Summary of the gradients over the the lenght of the Girrakool to Patonga Overnight 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.
Length 25km
Time 2 Days
.


Grade 4/6

Track: Hard
AS 2156.1 Gradient Very steep (4/6)
Quality of track Rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely (4/6)
Signs Minimal directional signs (4/6)
Experience Required Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Weather Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)
Infrastructure 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
9km of this walk has gentle hills with occasional steps and another 8km has short steep hills. Whilst another 7km is very steep and the remaining 1.4km is flat with no steps.

Quality of track
13km of this walk follows a clear and well formed track or trail and another 8km follows a rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely. The remaining (3.8km) follows a formed track, with some branches and other obstacles.

Signs
16km of this walk has directional signs at most intersection and another 5km is clearly signposted. The remaining (3.5km) has minimal directional signs.

Experience Required
Around 13km of this walk requires no previous bushwalking experience, whilst the remaining 12km requires some bushwalking experience.

Weather
Around 23km of this walk is not usually affected by severe weather events (that would unexpectedly impact safety and navigation), whilst the remaining 1.7km is affected by storms that may impact your navigation and safety.

Infrastructure
16km of this walk is close to useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats) and another 9km has limited facilities (such as not all cliffs fenced). The remaining (440m) has limited facilities (such as cliffs not fenced, significant creeks not bridged).

Track Notes


Drive to Girrakool picnic area car park
You can drive or ride to this start of this Bushwalk A park entry fee is required for driving into the park.
You can drive or ride to the start of this walk
Use these links to plan your trip to the start of this walk.
Plan your trip from --> Castle Hill|Chatswood|Dural|Epping|Gosford|Hornsby|Katoomba|Manly|Parramatta|Penrith|Strathfield|Sutherland|Sydney|

Girrakool Picnic Area Alt = 125 m
Girrakool picnic area is a wonderful family destination, just 5 minutes' drive from Kariong. The picnic area provides all the necessary facilities for a full day's activities, including barbecues, tables, shelters, water and toilets. National Park fees apply. The main picnic area is on the eastern side of the car park, and smaller, older picnic area is at the north-eastern corner of the car park. The southern Girrakool picnic area is located near the toilets. The picnic area is dedicated to John 'Jack' Higgs, the first superintendent of Brisbane Water National Park, and Mrs Vera Murdoch, who provided the funds. 'Girrakool' is an Aboriginal word meaning 'place of still waters'[1]. More info

(0 km) Girrakool picnic area car park to Int of Picnic Area and Girrakool Loop tracks
Walk: Easy - footpath
Length = 228 m Time = 5 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -27 m
From the lower side of the car park, this walk follows the 'To The Great North Walk' sign down the path to the lower picnic area. The walk passes the toilet block (on the left) and comes to another picnic area. The path passes through this picnic area to turn right following the 'Piles Creek Loop Track' sign down the steps. The footpath then leads to an intersection with the Broula Lookout track (on the left) and a 'car park' sign pointing back up the hill.

(0.23 km) Int of Picnic Area and Girrakool Loop tracks to Broula Lookout
Optional sidetrip: Walk: Easy - bushtrack
Length = 30 m Time = 1 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -2 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk leaves the main footpath and follows the rocky track to the signposted 'Broula Lookout' a short distance away.
(Retrace your steps back to the main track, then turn left to continue along this walk.)

Broula Lookout Alt = 95 m
Broula Lookout is fenced and a fairly short walk down from the Girrakool picnic area. Over time, the trees in the area have grown, filtering what would otherwise be a great vantage point for the Piles Creek waterfall. Broula is an Aboriginal word referring to a place of trickling water[2].

(0.23 km) Int of Picnic Area and Girrakool Loop tracks to Illoura Lookout
Walk: Easy - footpath
Length = 37 m Time = 1 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -6 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Girrakool Loop' sign down along the stone path. The path soon heads down some steps and comes to a fenced and signposted 'Illoura Lookout'.

Illoura Lookout Alt = 91 m
Illoura Lookout, Brisbane Water National Park, can be found a short walk south-west of the Girrakool picnic area, following the Great North Walk sign. This lookout provides a filtered view up and down the Leask and Piles Creek junction. There is a view of a waterfall from Piles Creek. Illoura is an Aboriginal word referring to a pleasant or peaceful place[3].

(0.27 km) Illoura Lookout to Int of Girrakool and Piles Ck lookout tracks
Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 1.11 km Time = 27 mins
Climb = 47 m Descent = -83 m
Turn left: From Illoura Lookout, the walk follows the left-hand 'Piles Creek' and GNW arrow down the wooden steps (keeping the valley to the right). The track soon passes a 'Caution Low Water Level Crossing Only' sign and crosses Piles Creek using the concrete stepping stones (the creek may be impassable after rain). The track then opens up on an unfenced rock platform, at the top of the waterfall.
Veer left: From the top of Piles Creek waterfall, this walk follows the track heading south away from the waterfall (keeping the big valley to the right). The clear track winds through the thick bush crossing a few small tributaries and though four sandstone caves. The caves provide good shelter and a great spot to rest. The track then flattens out and comes to a 3-way intersection and a 'Girrakool' sign.
Continue straight: From the intersection, the walk heads south along the wide track in the opposite direction of the 'Girrakool' sign. Soon the track heads down a short wooden staircase to the intersection at the bottom (Piles Creek Lookout visible to the right).

(1.38 km) Int of Girrakool and Piles Ck lookout tracks to Piles Ck Lookout
Optional sidetrip: Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 17 m Time = 1 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -8 m
Turn right: With the stairs to the right, this walk follows the short track to the fenced lookout. There are a few steps that then lead down the the lookout platform.
(Retrace your steps back to the main track, then turn right to continue along this walk.)

Piles Creek Lookout Alt = 46 m
Piles Creek lookout (not formally named), Brisbane Water National Park, sits high on the ridge, east of Piles Creek and north of Rat Gully. This lookout provides views over the Piles Creek valley and can be enjoyed from behind a fence. The valley is surprisingly steep at this point and the views downstream are quite extensive.

(1.38 km) Int of Girrakool and Piles Ck lookout tracks to Monolith Cave
Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 83 m Time = 2 mins
Climb = 16 m Descent = 0 m
Veer left: From the intersection, this walk heads away from the steps and lookout to soon pass a rock wall. A short time later the track leads through the cleft in a rock to reveal a cave on the right.

Monolith Cave Alt = 72 m
Monolith Cave is an informally named cave and interesting rock formation high on the ridge east of Piles Creek and North of Rat Gully in the Brisbane Water National Park. The cave is a fairly large sandstone overhang on the edge of the track. The cave provides shelter for walkers and is a great spot to rest and enjoy the area. This rock and the more Monolithic rock about 60m to the south are interesting to explore, and provide great views of the surrounding area. Take great care if exploring the rocks.

(1.46 km) Monolith Cave to Rat Gully Lookout
Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 221 m Time = 7 mins
Climb = 13 m Descent = -29 m
Continue straight: From the cave, this walk heads south following the track away from the rock to soon come to another large and interesting monolithic rock. Soon after this large rock the track starts to head down the hill to come to an old fenced lookout, looking over Rat Gully.

(1.68 km) Rat Gully Lookout to Scopas Peak
Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 3.43 km Time = 1 hr 26 mins
Climb = 285 m Descent = -114 m
Continue straight: From the lookout, the track follows the bush track heading downhill. The track soon does a sharp left hand switch back (at the 'Girrakool' sign) and continues down to Rat Gully. The track then crosses the creek and boulder field following the cut steps (and passing the old bridge). On the other side the track heads right, under the fallen tree and then climbs up the hill. After a short meander through the bush the track drops down and crosses another gully (passing a sign pointing back to 'Girrakool') and coming to a 'Great North Walk' signpost and intersection.
Turn sharp left: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Patonga Ferry' sign[4] up the side of the gully, keeping the intermittent creek[5] to your left. The track leads past a 'Patonga' sign then winds steeply up the hill for about 130m, through a cleft in the rock[6] and past a few rock walls, and then the track mostly flattens out with some filtered distant views[7]. The track continues gently uphill for another 300m, becoming progressively flatter[8] before passing along the side of a long rock wall[9], with a tall sandstone overhang[10]. The track then crosses a small gully and leads past another overhang, where the track begins to lead downhill. The rocky track winds steeply downhill for about 130m to then cross an intermittent creek which flows over the solid sandstone platform[11].
Continue straight: From the west side of the creek, this walk climbs uphill following the rocky track[12]. The track climb for about 600m, fairly steeply for a while then becoming progressively less steep[13]. The track passes a couple of rocky outcrops[14] to then come to a large flat rock platform, with distant views[15]. The rocky track then leads off this rock platform and continues up the ridge[16] for just shy of 300m to come to the edge of a much larger rock platform[17] with more views. A series of GNW arrow posts lead across this rock platform, generally leading towards Scopas Peak[18] for about 400m where the arrows lead off the rock platform and back onto a heathy track[19]. Keeping Scopas Peak up to the left, this track leads around the side of the hill for about 150m to pass a view across the valley to Mooney Mooney Bridge[20]. Over the next 800m, the track leads up across a few more rock platforms[21] then climbs fairly steeply up to a view point, just to the west of Scopas Peak[22].

(5.11 km) Scopas Peak to Int of GNW and Wondabyne trail
Track: Hard - bushtrack,servicetrail
Length = 2.29 km Time = 45 mins
Climb = 54 m Descent = -107 m
Veer left: From the view point[23], just west of Scopas Peak, this walk heads south steeply down the rocky track[24], initially keeping the distant view to your right. The track leads steeply down past a few rock walls[25] then climbs down over some rocks with cut steps[26], enjoying more views[27] for about 230m, and then the track mostly flattens out to lead gently down across the narrow saddle[28]. The track gently undulates along this ridge for about 750m to come to a green painted metal box on a post (on your left), containing a Great North Walk intentions book[29].
Continue straight: From the Great North Walk intentions book[30], after leaving your comments, this walk heads south, gently downhill[31] along the clear track. After about 150m, the walk comes to a T-intersection[32] with the Gosford Rifle Range trail - At this intersection is a 'Girrakool' sign[33], pointing back along the track.
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post[34] downhill along the management trail[35] (directly away from the 'No Entry Past This Point' sign[36]). The trail undulates moderately steeply in a few places) along the ridge line for about 900m, to then walk over a large rock platform[37]. From the top of this platform, there are some distant views over Mooney Mooney Creek[38]. On the large rock platform, this walk tends left to follow the scrape marks on the rock and soon find the wide trail again[39]. The trail leads downhill for about 50m, coming to a signposted intersection with a track on your left[40] and a 'Girrakool' sign[41] pointing back up the trail.

(7.4 km) Int of GNW and Wondabyne Station Trail to Kariong Brook crossing
Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 1.97 km Time = 47 mins
Climb = 64 m Descent = -211 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Patonga' sign[42] heading east down along the rocky track[43]. The track soon bends right and heads around a rock outcrop[44] then continues down through the heath and scribbly gums[45] for about 400m to come to a flat rock platform[46]. Here the track continues downhill over several more rock platforms, becoming progressively steeper[47] for just over 1km to head into the cool valley and come to the bank beside Myron Brook[48].
Continue straight: From the western side of Myron Brook, this walk crosses the creek on the sandstone rock platform[49] to follow the track up a few stone steps and up the short steep hill[50]. The track then flattens out as it leads around the side of the hill for about 200m to pass alongside a long rock wall[51] (on your left). Now leading downhill, the track continues for another 100m then heads down a short steep section[52] into the dense moist gully, coming to a faint intersection in front of Kariong Brook Falls[53] (on your left) (just before crossing the creek, which is often underground).

(9.36 km) Kariong Brook crossing to Int of GNW and Thommos Loop track
Track: Hard - bushtrack,servicetrail
Length = 2.17 km Time = 52 mins
Climb = 176 m Descent = -55 m
Continue straight: From Kariong Brook[54], the walk crosses the creek and heads up the hill towards the cave[55] (keeping the waterfall[56] to the left). The track leads under the overhang[57] and then winds up the rocky path for about 400m, past a few rock walls[58] and among the grass trees[59]. The walk then heads up some more stone steps, bending left on the steps with a metal handrail[60]. The rocky track continues up for another 130m over a few more rocks[61] to come to a flat clearing[62] (on your right, that has been used as a campsite). From the clearing, the track continues uphill, passing another rocky outcrop[63] after about 60m, then after about 80m more, the track leads to a T-intersection[64] with a management trail (and a sign pointing back to 'Girrakool'[65]).
Veer right: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post and 'Patonga' sign[66] downhill along the management trail[67]. The trail then winds along the side of the hill for about 1.3km (passing a pleasant grove of large Sydney Redgums[68]) to then step up onto a particularly large rock platform[69]. After crossing this rock platform, the trail continues for another 120m to come to a Y-intersection[70] (at another rock platform) where a 'Girrakool' sign[71] points back along the track.

(11.54 km) Int of GNW and Thommos Loop trail to Int of GNW and Mt Wondabyne Peak tracks
Track: Hard - bushtrack,servicetrail,bushtrack
Length = 1.99 km Time = 43 mins
Climb = 138 m Descent = -65 m
Veer right: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post and 'Patonga' sign[72] east, gently downhill along the narrow track. After about 250m, the track leads to a notably large rock platform[73] with a clear view across the valley to Mt Wondabyne[74]. Here the track continues gently downhill, crossing more rock platforms[75] for about 300m to head over a section of timber boardwalk[76] and past a few disused power poles[77]. The track then continues over another rock platform for another 200m to cross a small ephemeral creek[78]. From the creek, the track leads up a short distance up under the power lines to come to a T-intersection[79] with a wide trail, where a sign points back to 'Girrakool'[80].
Turn right: From the intersection, the track follows the GNW arrow post along the management trail[81], initially keeping the power lines to your right. The trail soon bends left and leads uphill. As the trail flattens out again, it comes to a three-way intersection marked with a 'Great North Walk' and 'Wondabyne Station' sign[82], pointing back along the trail.
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Mt Wondabyne' sign[83] south up the trail. The trail soon begins to narrow[84] and after almost 200m, the track steps up to cross a rock platform[85], following a few GNW arrow posts to find a GNW 'Walker Register' tube[86]. After writing a comment, the walk continues uphill[87] along the track for about 700m, as the track become progressively flatter[88], passing beside the Mt Wondabyne Peak (up to your left). Then about 50m after leaving the trees and entering a section of low heath, this track then comes to a three-way intersection[89] (the Mt Wondabyne peak track, on the left[90]), marked with a GNW arrow post.

(13.53 km) Int of Great North Walk and Mt Wondabyne Peak tracks to Mt Wondabyne Peak
Optional sidetrip: Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 208 m Time = 5 mins
Climb = 20 m Descent = -1 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the Mt Wondabyne peak track north-east as it heads uphill directly towards Mt Wondabyne. The track is leads gently at first then starts to climb up a series of rock ledges[91]. After about 60m, the track passes a small cave[92] (large enough for 2 or 3 people to lie in). The track then continues to climb for another 90m, up the rocky track then for through a grove of small trees[93], to come to the first peak[94]. The faint track continues along the ridge for another 60m then comes to the main peak, where there is an old trig station[95] and great panoramic views[96].
(Retrace your steps back to the main track, then turn left to continue along this walk.)

Mt Wondabyne Alt = 230 m
Mount Wondabyne is one of the most prominent peaks in Brisbane Water National Park. The long cone-shaped hill has a rocky top and is home to a trig station. Walkers can enjoy full 360-degree panoramic views from the top. To the east are good views over the Brisbane Water, Woy Woy and other central coast suburbs. West, down next to Mullet Creek, you can see some buildings near Wondabyne Station and the train line. Otherwise, most of the expansive views are over much of Brisbane Water National Park. There are some small trees providing limited shade, a great place to soak up the views.

(13.53 km) Int of Great North Walk and Mt Wondabyne Peak tracks to Mt Wondabyne Campsite
Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 87 m Time = 2 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -6 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post[97] south over a small rise then gently downhill along the rocky track, leaving Mt Wondabyne peak[98] behind and to your left. After about 90m, the track leads down to a clearing[99] at the end of a management trail, where there is a sign pointing back to 'Mooney Mooney rest area'[100]. This is the Mt Wondabyne campsite[101].

Mt Wondabyne Campsite Alt = 212 m
This basic campsite is found at the end of a management trail, near the base of Mt Wondabyne. The campsite is at the bottom of a small (east facing) rock wall and has trees surrounding much of the area, providing some shelter. There is an established fire circle and a basic seat. There is no water or other facilities. (There is also small cave suitable for sleeping a few people about half way up Mount Wondabyne).

Overnight stay Goto day 2 notes

Day 2


(13.62 km) Mt Wondabyne Campsite to Int of Tunnel Track and Mt Wondabyne trail
Track: Moderate - servicetrail
Length = 757 m Time = 16 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -49 m
Turn left: From the clearing (campsite), this walk follows the 'Patonga'[102] sign down the wide management trail. The trail winds downhill for about 300m, enjoying some views back to Mount Wondabyne[103] as well as to Woy Woy and Brisbane Water[104]. From here, the trail continues downhill through the heath for another 400m to come to a T-intersection with another management trail (Tunnel Track), where there is a 'Mt Wondabyne'[105] and 'Girrakool'[106] sign pointing back up the hill.

(14.37 km) Int of Tunnel Track and Mt Wondabyne trail to Woy Woy landfill view
Track: Hard - servicetrail,bushtrack,bushtrack
Length = 2.48 km Time = 51 mins
Climb = 83 m Descent = -98 m
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post[107] west, gently down along the wide management trail, keeping the main wide valley to your left. The trail winds along the side of the hill for just over 450m to come to a clear three-way intersection[108] with the signposted with the 'Rocky Ponds Trail'[109] (on your right). There is a sign here, pointing back up the trail to 'Girrakool'.
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Patonga' sign[110] south, downhill along the wide trail. After just over 100m, the trail passes through a metal gate[111] and fence then continues for another 50m to come to an intersection with a narrow track[112] (on your left), marked with a GNW arrow post and 'Tunnel Trail'[113] (on your right).
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post directly away from the face of the 'Tunnel Trail' sign[114][115] along the narrow track. After about 20m, this short track leads to an intersection with the signposted 'Dillons Trail'[116].
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post and 'Patonga' sign[117] south-west up along the narrow track[118]. The track leads fairly gently uphill for about 300m, then mostly flattens out along the side of a rock platform[119] for another 500m to come to a high point[120]. The track now undulates, following a series of many GNW arrow posts[121] generally down along the rocky ridge line, over many rock platforms[122] for almost 1km (enjoying the distant views[123][124] over Woy Woy Bay and the Brisbane Water, to your left). The walk then steps down off the rock platform[125] via a few carved steps[126] onto a sandy track. This track then leads gently down for about 130m, coming to an unfenced, clear view over Woy Woy landfill[127] (where the track then bends right[128]).

(16.85 km) Woy Woy landfill view to Rock Platform
Track: Hard - bushtrack,servicetrail
Length = 964 m Time = 25 mins
Climb = 39 m Descent = -77 m
Veer right: From the Woy Woy landfill view, this walk heads follows the track downhill, initially keeping the views to your left. The track soon leads down past a rock wall[129] (on your right) and after about 100m, the track passes fairly steeply down past a side track[130] (on your left). Continuing more gently down along the main track for another 100m, this walk then turns left to follow a GNW arrow post[131] steeply downhill, soon stepping down some carved steps[132] in the rock beside a sloped rock platform (on your right)[133]. Here the track bends left and winds quite steeply[134] for another 100m (passing another faint side track[135]) to cross Patonga Creek[136], among the moist cabbage palm[137] forest. The track continues gently uphill for just shy of 100m, to come to an intersection with a management trail, marked with a 'Great North Walk' sign[138] pointing back along the track.
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post uphill along the wide trail. The trail leads uphill for about 200m to then lead quite steeply downhill[139] for another 200m. Here the trail winds through a ferny valley[140] with a scattering of cabbage palms[141] (Livistona australis) then uphill for about 80m, where the trail bends right and leads down a short distance to find a noteable rock platform[142] (with an ephemeral creek) and filtered view down the valley (to your right)[143].

(17.82 km) Rock Platform to Int of Hawkesbury track and Sani Depot Trail
Track: Moderate - servicetrail
Length = 1.33 km Time = 25 mins
Climb = 56 m Descent = -21 m
Continue straight: From the rock platform, this walk follows the wide trail along the side of the hill, keeping the valley to your right. The trail undulates but heads mostly uphill for almost 600m, crossing a couple of culverted creeks[144][145]. After a short steeper climb, the trail flattens out in a open heathy area to come to an intersection with a faint track (on your right)[146].
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the wide management trail (the Hawkesbury Track) gently uphill, initially keeping the wide valley to your right. The trail leads through the open heath for about 170m to enter a more wooded forest and cross a culverted creek[147] (with sandstone blocks[148]). Here the trail begins to climb, becoming progressively steeper for about 600m before entering a tall Sydney Redgum forest and flattening out a clear three-way intersection, marked with a 'Sani Depot Trail' sign[149] (on your left).

(19.15 km) Int of Hawkesbury track and Sani Depot Trail to Int of Hawkesbury track and Patonga Dr trail
Track: Moderate - servicetrail
Length = 1.12 km Time = 21 mins
Climb = 39 m Descent = -25 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the main wide management trail uphill (initially keeping the 'Sani Depot Trail' on your left[150]) to soon leave the tall wooded forest. After about 200m (just as the trail mostly flattens out past a fairly steep climb[151]), this walk passes a large clearing[152] (on your right). Here the trail continues more gently uphill[153] and undulates around the side of the hill, enjoying some views along the way. After passing alongside this rocky hill[154], the trail bends right[155] and leads down to a T-intersection[156] marked with a 'Girrakool' sign[157], pointing back up the trail (and a short track on your right leading to large open rock platform[158]).

(20.26 km) Rock platform intersection to Int of Rest Area and Girrakool tracks
Track: Moderate - servicetrail
Length = 749 m Time = 12 mins
Climb = 12 m Descent = -5 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post directly away from the face of the 'Girrakool' sign[159] and away from the rock platform to head south along the wide trail. Over the next 200m, the trail gently bends left then comes to a clear three-way intersection (just before the steeper uphill) marked with a 'Girrakool' sign[160] sign pointing back down along the trail.
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Patonga' sign[161] south gently up along the sandy management trail. The trail leads among the heath and large scribbly gums[162] for about 270m to come to a T-intersection[163], marked with a GNW arrow post[164] (where the main trail bends left and the old Patonga Creek trail is on the right).
Turn left : From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post east, gently up along the wide management trail. After about 100m, the trail bends right[165], then continues mostly flat for nearly 200m, coming to a clear three-way intersection[166] where a 'Girrakool' sign[167] points back up along the trail.

(21.01 km) Int of Rest Area and Girrakool tracks to Warrah Car Park
Track: Moderate - servicetrail,bushtrack,servicetrail,servicetrail
Length = 1.65 km Time = 29 mins
Climb = 22 m Descent = -25 m
Veer left: From the intersection, this walk heads follows 'Patonga' sign[168] and GNW arrow post south-east along the wide sandy trail, heading gently uphill. After just over 100m, this walk heads around a locked gate[169], marked with a 'Great North Walk' sign[170], to come to a T-intersection with the sealed Patonga Drive[171].
Continue straight: From the intersection and locked gate[172], this walk crosses the sealed Patonga Drive[173] to find a GNW arrow post and track on the other side. This walk now follows the GNW arrow post along the track, as it bends right to lead parallel to Patonga Drive (keeping the road about 20m to your right) for about 150m before passing some distant ocean views[174] (on your left). Here the track continues for another 100m to pass a drainage ditch[175] and come to a T-intersection[176] with the dirt Warrah Trig Station Rd.
Veer left: From the intersection near Patonga Drive, this walk follows the dirt road away from Patonga Drive. After a little while the road heads down a gentle hill then comes to an intersection with a management trail and locked gate (on the right).
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the dirt road south east towards the hill and fence. Soon the road passes a trail (on the left) and then heads through a dirt over flow car park, to come to a smaller sealed car park at the end of the road.

(22.66 km) Warrah car park to Warrah Trig Station
Walk: Easy - footpath
Length = 32 m Time = 1 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = 0 m
Continue straight: From Warrah car park, this walk follows the 'Tony Doyle Track' sign[177] up the steps and sandstone footpath. The path winds a short distance up to a rock platform with the old Warrah Trig station, and offering filtered distant views.

Warrah Trig Station Alt = 164 m
Warrah Trig Station is part of a national geodetic survey established during the 1970's. The 'Triangulation station' (aka trigonometrical or trig station) is a distinct marker once clear of trees, and would have been visible for many kilometers in the area. There are many such trig stations around Australia, which were used to help in surveying. Each station has a know position and altitude, which allows surveyors to use triangulation and determine another point's location. With advances in technology, these trig stations have been abandoned and superseded. The trig station is now surrounded by trees, with some filtered views along the Hawkesbury River[178]. The area is rich with wildflowers in spring.

(22.69 km) Warrah Trig Station to Warrah Lookout intersection
Walk: Easy - footpath
Length = 308 m Time = 7 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -39 m
Continue straight: From the trig station, this walk heads toward the water view, down the timber staircase. At the bottom of the timber stairs, the walk follows the sandstone footpath (and another set of timber stairs) and stone steps, winding down the hill. The footpath passes over and between a few rock platforms on the way. The path leads to a signposted intersection with the Pearl Beach / Patonga fire trail and a sign pointing back up to 'Warrah Car Park'[179].

(23 km) Warrah Lookout intersection to Warrah Lookout
Optional sidetrip: Walk: Easy - footpath
Length = 70 m Time = 2 mins
Climb = 0 m Descent = -12 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads between the timber posts and follows the 'Warrah Lookout' sign[180] along the sandstone footpath. The path leads through the bush for a short distance, coming to the fenced Warrah Lookout. (Beware of informal side tracks that lead to unfenced sections of cliff.)
(Retrace your steps back to the main track, then turn left to continue along this walk.)

Warrah Lookout Alt = 114 m
Warrah Lookout is a mostly fenced lookout on a large sandstone platform. The lookout provides fantastic views across the Hawkesbury River. From left to right, you can see along the escarpment which forms the southern boundary of Brisbane Water National Park, out to the Pacific Ocean, Barrenjoey Headland, West Head, along Cowan Creek, Juno Point and along the escarpment to Patonga. This is a great place to spend some time soaking up the views.

(23 km) Warrah Lookout intersection to Broken Bay View
Track: Moderate - servicetrail,bushtrack
Length = 697 m Time = 15 mins
Climb = 26 m Descent = -26 m
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows 'Patonga' sign[181] uphill along the management trail. After 100m, the trail passes a track on the left (marked with 5 large boulders - this informal track leads to an unfenced view). This walk continues along the management trail and, after a short steeper uphill section, the trail comes to an intersection with the signposted 'Patogna' track[182] on the left.
Veer left: From the intersection, this walk follows the Great North Walk arrow and 'Patonga' sign[183] along the narrow track. The track winds gently through the bush, with the occasional water glimpse to the left. After a short time, the track leads to a few large Sydney Red Gums and a large unfenced rock platform on the left (just before a few Great North Walk arrow markers) - this is the Broken Bay view.

Broken Bay View Alt = 124 m
Broken Bay View is an informal, unnamed and unfenced vantage point at the top of the cliffs, east of Patonga. The large rock platform has a number of large Sydney Red Gums, providing some shade. There are great views across the Hawkesbury River, along Cowan Creek and to West Head. The views to the left extend past Lion Island to Barrenjoey Head and out to the Pacific Ocean.

(23.7 km) Broken Bay View to Patonga Wharf car park
Track: Moderate - bushtrack,beach,road
Length = 1.12 km Time = 31 mins
Climb = 13 m Descent = -136 m
Veer right: From Broken Bay view, this walk follows the GNW arrows down the hill along the track. After a little while, the track heads down between some rock and comes to an unfenced rock platform with great views across the water. Here, the track turns right then soon heads down some steps between more rocks, after which the track flattens out for a while. Near the end of the ridge, the track turns right and heads down to the beach. The track comes out at the eastern end of Patonga Beach, at a GNW signpost[184] and next to some beach cottages. This area is also know as 'Dark Corner'[185].
Continue straight: From the eastern end of the beach, this walk follows the power lines across the sand, keeping the water to the left. The walk soon heads around the gate, across the car park and comes to the Warrah Reserve boat ramp.
Continue straight: From the boat ramp, this walk follows the road[186], keeping the water to the left for 220m to then turn left, following a GNW arrow post[187], down along Patonga Drive. The walk then soon leads past a 'The Great North Walk' sign[188] opposite the toilet block[189] and continues down past 'Eve Williams Memorial Oval'[190][191][192] for 70m to a car park at Patonga Wharf[193], opposite some shops[194]. (Alternatively it is possible to walk along the sandy beach[195] from the Boat ramp to the wharf.)

Catch the ferry from Patonga Beach
Public transport (ferry) available from this Bushwalk You can phone 131500 (the transport info line) for upto date running time info
Use these links to plan your Ferry (and train) trip from the end of this walk.

Plan your trip to --> Castle Hill|Chatswood|Dural|Epping|Gosford|Hornsby|Katoomba|Manly|Parramatta|Penrith|Strathfield|Sutherland|Sydney|There is no regular ferry service between Patonga and Brooklyn any more. You can easily grab a water taxi (about $80+). If you are part of a large group they can also organise a larger boat carrying 35 passengers (about $16 pp). Phone 0410 554 777 to book. Enjoy the boat ride.
Catch the ferry from Patonga Beach
Public transport (ferry) available from this Bushwalk Ferry service operates between Palm Beach and Bobbin head daily. Stopping at Patoonga Beach (and Cottage Point on request).
Mon - Fri 11:30am departs Patoonga for Bobbin head (then to Palm Beach)
Weekends and school holidays 9:30am, 3pm, 4:15pm from Patoonga for Palm Beach.
Phone to confirm times on the day 0414466635
Please check with the ferry operator for latest info on services --> Timetable
Catch the bus from Patonga Wharf car park
Public transport (bus) available from this Bushwalk A bus service runs along Patonga Drive down to Patonga. The service only runs a few times a day. Please check timetable for more info or Phone Busway on (02) 4368 2277 (route 50) Timetable
Drive from Patonga Wharf car park
You can drive or ride from this end of this Bushwalk There is free parking available.
You can drive or ride from the end of this walk
Use these links to plan your trip from the end of this walk.
Plan your trip to --> Castle Hill|Chatswood|Dural|Epping|Gosford|Hornsby|Katoomba|Manly|Parramatta|Penrith|Strathfield|Sutherland|Sydney|

Getting there

Plan your trip to the start of the walk and back from the end of the walk

Public Transport links currently not working, sorry
Public Transport Timetables

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From the end of the walk

Catch a ferry to Brooklyn (Haweksburry River Station)
There is no regular ferry service between Patonga and Brooklyn any more. You can easily grab a water taxi (about $80+). If you are part of a large group they can also organise a larger boat carrying 35 passengers (about $16 pp). Phone 0410 554 777 to book. Enjoy the boat ride. Get Timetable
Catch a bus to Gosford
A bus service runs along Patonga Drive down to Patonga. The service only runs a few times a day. Please check timetable for more info or Phone Busway on (02) 4368 2277 (route 50) Get Timetable
Catch a ferry to Bobbin Head
Ferry service operates between Palm Beach and Bobbin head daily. Stopping at Patoonga Beach (and Cottage Point on request). Mon - Fri 11:30am departs Patoonga for Bobbin head (then to Palm Beach) Weekends and school holidays 9:30am, 3pm, 4:15pm from Patoonga for Palm Beach. Phone to confirm times on the day 0414466635 Get Timetable

Driving Directions
Map Car Shuffle
To the start of the walk

Drive from:
From the end of the walk

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Near by



Nearest know Outdoor Stores near the start of this walk
Store Address Phone Distance (straight line)
Mannings Sports 172 Mann St , Gosford (02) 4325 1617 6.1 km
BCF Australia Pty Ltd 354 Manns Rd , Gosford West (02) 4322 5833 5.6 km
Camping World Shop 18, 482 Pacific Hwy, Wyoming (02) 4324 6515 7.2 km
Boots Great Outdoors 201 The Entrance Rd , Erina (02) 4367 0396 10 km
Paddlecraft 3B / 1714 Pittwater Road, Bayview 02 9997 8015 25.4 km


A list of the nearest UHF CB repeaters I found to Girrakool to Patonga Overnight.
Channel Call sign
(more info)
Site Distance and dir from Girrakool to Patonga Overnight
Click to re-center search
8 MDC08 Gencom Site Lot 6 Wakefield Close KARIONG 2 km (to the ESE)
3 VMB2 Tower Street BATEAU BAY 18 km (to the ENE)
6 VMB7 CB Repeater Site 16 Alan Rd BEROWRA HEIGHTS 24 km (to the SSW)
5 SYD05 Sydney Adventist Hospital 185 Fox Valley Rd WAHROONGA
Emergency use only
38 km (to the SSW)
7 SYD07 7 Glamorgan St BLACKTOWN 52 km (to the SW)

Weather and Park info

Fire Danger
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 3 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.

Weather and Climate
Weather and Climate summary detailed weather and climate information here
°C (feels like °)
km/h from the
% humidity     (as at )
Wed      30°Showers. Likely storm developing.
Thu19°|26°Possible shower.
Fri18°|31°Partly cloudy.
Sat17°|25°Possible late shower.
A graph displaying the average daily temperature range for the year

Brisbane Water National Park Link to official closures and fire bans page
Brisbane Waters National Park is situated south west of Gosford perched on the Hawkesbury River. The park is characterised by sandstone features, Aboriginal engravings, flowery heaths, bird life and spectacular water views. Brisbane Waters NP has many bushwalks through the are with the Great North Walk passing through the middle of the park.
Region: Sydney & Surrounds
Park fees Camping Facilities I am not aware of any closures in this park at the moment.

Walker Feedback

Comments
Add NewSearch
Phil Cairns - Walking with my son IP:203.213.127.xxx | 2009-10-18 23:08:48
I blogged my feedback the day after the walk. http://www.cairns-family.com/blog/2009/10/19/when-i-went-walking/
Ian Frith - Preparation IP:121.217.1.xxx | 2013-03-12 11:34:39
Love the site and use it for all our walks but having no luck in printing section 2 of the maps for this walk...comes out black (with distances in blue).
Please look into this for future walkers.
admin - re: Preparation Super Administrator | 2013-03-13 03:18:26
Ian Frith wrote:
but having no luck in printing section 2 ...comes out black

Hi Ian
Thanks for the feedback. I have fixed this problem now - all maps should print fine. Sorry for the trouble.

Matt :)
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Loading the images not too much longer now :)


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