This is a great walk, crossing the middle of Brisbane Water National Park and visiting several highlights including Rocky Ponds. Starting with a ferry trip from Brooklyn, this walk follows a series of faint tracks, clear tracks and management trails. There is an alternate route described in the notes as a way around the Defile Track which and be very faint. You will enjoy a wide range of panoramic views from TumblecowII ridge, Rocky Ponds (Tank Creek) and an optional side trip to enjoy the view from Mount Wondabyne. The walk finishes with a walk of contrast, beside the Woy Woy landfill and a road walk to Woy Woy Station. A great day out or make it an overnighter by camping overnight at Tank Creek or Mt Wondabyne.
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This walk passes through a remote area and sections have no visible track. At least one person in your group should have training and experience in off track walking and navigation. Even with these notes and a GPS these extra skills and equipment are required.
Cross sectional view of the Little Wobby to Woy Woy via Rocky Ponds bushwalking track
Analysis and summary of the altitude variation on the Little Wobby to Woy Woy via Rocky Ponds 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.
6 hrs 30 mins
Very steep (4/6)
Quality of track
Rough unclear track (5/6)
No directional signs (5/6)
Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Forecast, unforecast storms and severe weather may impact on navigation and safety (4/6)
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
9km of this walk has short steep hills and another 6km has gentle hills with occasional steps. Whilst another 3.1km is flat with no steps and the remaining 740m is very steep.
Quality of track
6km of this walk follows a clear and well formed track or trail and another 4.4km follows a formed track, with some branches and other obstacles. Whilst another 3.9km follows a smooth and hardened path and a 3.9km section follows a rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely. The remaining 740m follows a rough unclear track.
10km of this walk is clearly signposted and another 8km has minimal directional signs. Whilst another 740m Has no directional signs and the remaining 190m has directional signs at most intersection.
Around 10km of this walk requires no previous bushwalking experience, whilst the remaining 9km requires some bushwalking experience.
16km of this walk is not usually affected by severe weather events (that would unexpectedly impact safety and navigation) and another 2.6km is affected by forecast, unforecast storms and severe weather events that may impact on navigation and safety. The remaining (840m) is affected by storms that may impact your navigation and safety.
10km of this walk is close to useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats) and another 4.6km has limited facilities (such as cliffs not fenced, significant creeks not bridged). The remaining (4.3km) has limited facilities (such as not all cliffs fenced).
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This walk passes over land owned by the Department of Sport and Recreation the 'Broken Bay Sport and Recreation Centre'. They are very welcoming of bushwalkers and have an easy system in place to get permission to walk on their land. The system is in place mostly to avoid impact on their camps. Just a quick phone call and they will email you a letter (which you carry) – worth the small amount of effort. Phone (02) 4349 0600 and ask for permission. More info
Brooklyn Ferry Terminal
Little Wobby Wharf Walk: Easy - transport
Length = 3.08 km
Time = 20 mins
Climb = 8 m
Descent = -4 m
From the wharf near Hawkesburry River Station (Brooklyn), this walk takes a ferry ride. The ferry leaves Monday to Friday at 6:25am, 7:25am, 9:30am, 10:55am, 2pm, 3:15pm, 4:05pm, 4:45pm, 5:45pm, 6:45pm, 7:15pm. On weekends and public holidays, the ferry leaves at 7:30am, 8:30am, 9:30am, 10:30am, 1:15pm, 2:15pm, 3:15pm, 4:15pm and 6:15pm (and 7:10 DST) . The ferry costs about $6 one-way and running times are affected by weather. Phone: 0448 101016 Please check their website as the timetable may change.
Alternatively, you can catch a water taxi, which generally costs about $100 per group of 4 and needs to be booked ahead. There are a few options - try Hawkesbury River Water Taxi on 0400 600 111 or Rick on 0448 101 010. More info Note: The distance and altitude change for this ride is not included in the total for this walk.
Alt = 3 m
Little Wobby is a boat-access only township on the eastern bank of the Hawkesbury River, opposite Brooklyn and Dangar Island. The houses stretch for 1.3km along the river and are backed by a long cliffline know as tumblecowII. South of the houses (and much of the point) is home to the Broken Bay Sport and Recreation Centre. North of the headland is Brisbane Water National Park. Little Wobby has a public wharf and phone box, about 350m north of the southernmost house, and a Sport and Recreation Centre wharf about 80m south of this last house. The town was established during WW2 to support artillery batteries, to prevent the Japanese entering Broken Bay.
Little Wobby Beach Wharf
Little Wobby Sport and Rec Wharf Walk: Easy - bushtrack
Length = 399 m
Time = 9 mins
Climb = 20 m
Descent = -22 m
Veer right: From the public wharf and phone box, this walk heads along the grassy edge (keeping the water to the right). The walk then heads up some stairs and under some houses and generally makes its way along the footpath. Once in front of the houses again, the grassy path heads along the edge of the water then passes a large clearing (under the power lines) to come to the Little Wobby Sport and Recreation Centre wharf.
Little Wobby Sport and Rec Wharf
Int of Pacific Trail and Defile Track Walk: Easy - servicetrail
Length = 871 m
Time = 19 mins
Climb = 43 m
Descent = -38 m
Continue straight: From the sport and rec wharf, this walk heads uphill along the management trail, past the boat ramp and brown 'Authorised Entry Only' sign (keeping the water on the right). After about 350m of climbing up the hill, the trail flattens as it comes to a large concrete 'Tee Low Tanks' water tank on Croppy Point. From the tank, the walk continues along the trail still heading uphill (but more gently), passing many great water views (on the right). As the trail approaches Spring Beach, it bends left fairly sharply. After passing an access track to the beach (on the right), the trail comes to an intersection on the left with a track heading steeply up the hill (to two obvious sandstone caves - this is the bottom of 'The Defile' Track).
Alt = 3 m
Spring Beach is a 60m wide, south-west facing, yellow sand beach on the Hawkesbury River. The sandy section is about 20m deep and extends another 30m across a grassy section into the steep gully (and small lagoon). There is a large yellow Telstra sign showing that a underwater cable crosses the Hawkesbury River. Behind the beach on the Pacific Trail (the main management trail), is a sandstone dam and an old pit toilet. The beach is a great spot to stop and rest, enjoying the water view into Porto Bay and Cowan Creek.
Int of Pacific Trail and Defile Track
Int of Midway trail and The Defile Alternate Route:
Track: Hard - servicetrail,bushtrack,bushtrack,bushtrack
( Show detail)
Length = 3.69 km
Time = 1 hr 24 mins
Climb = 250 m
Descent = -127 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads along the management trail away from the water, keeping the beach below on the right. As the trail bends right, it passes an interesting sandstone dam and, about 60m later, passes a smaller spring-fed dam. A short distance after the smaller dam, the trail comes to an intersection with a track (on the right) leading down to Spring Beach. Continue straight: From the intersection, keeping the water views to the right, this walk heads gently up hill along the management trail, soon passing an old toilet. The trail winds along the hill for a while (passing an old trail on the left just after the white posts), soon coming to and passing a green concrete pumping station (Forty Year Spring). About 650m past the spring, the trail passes the signposted 'Rock Climbing' track and then comes to an intersection just above the signposted 'Juno Head Campsite'. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the power lines along the management trail (keeping the water views to the right). The trail rounds the side on the gully then, just before passing under the power lines, the trail comes to a signposted intersection with the 'Midway Trail'. Turn left : From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Midway Trail' and red post up the hill along the narrow track. The track soon climbs up through a rocky outcrop, leading to a clearing and campsite. From this clearing, the trail follows the red post up the hill for another 350m, coming to another clearing and campsite at the unsignposted intersection with the Magpie Trail. Veer left: From the intersection and campsite, this walk follows the red and yellow marker north-west along the track. The track follows the ridge top, with the occasional clearing giving great views of the Hawkesbury River on the left. The red and yellow markers lead through a cleft in the rocks then up through a small gully in a rocky outcrop, then the walk comes to a fairly large tessellated rock platform (surround by heath, this is also the intersection with the unsignposted, yellow marker, Horseshoe trail). Continue straight: From the tessellated rock platform, this walk follows the red painted marker north along the ridge (keeping the filtered water views to the left). The track follows a narrow rock platform for about 180m and then, just past the good views of the river, the walk steps off the rock and follows a rocky track. The track passes some rocky outcrops and more filtered views and, about 130m past the small rock wall (on the left), the track comes to a three way intersection with The Defile track on the left (and a large scribbly gum on the right). Continue straight to rejoin the main walk, following the notes from 5.09km 'Int of Midway trail and The Defile'.
Int of Pacific Trail and Defile Track
Int of Midway trail and The Defile Route: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 740 m
Time = 18 mins
Climb = 131 m
Descent = -6 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk heads up the track (away from the beach) and through the two caves. On the other side of the caves, the faint track heads left up the side of the gully (keeping the gully on the right) and passes around the roots of a large fallen tree. About 80m past the fallen tree, the walk tends left up through the rocky gully (keeping the rock wall and overhang on the right). From here, the track winds up the ridge, tending right onto the main ridge, where the way becomes flatter. Near the top, the track passes some faint false tracks on the left to come to a clear three-way intersection (with the Midway Trail) in front of a large scribbly gum.
Int of Midway trail and The Defile
Tumblecow 2 flat rock Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 1.15 km
Time = 28 mins
Climb = 64 m
Descent = -78 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the main track north, keeping the large squiggly gum behind and to the right. The track soon comes to another, more obvious three-way intersection. Veer right: From the intersection, this walk heads north, passing under the power lines and past the telegraph poles. The track heads through the scrub for a while before passing a few nice vantage points with great views over Brooklyn, then coming to a view with two TV antennas mounted on small masts. The track continues along the top of the ridge for another 350m, passing some more great views and coming to two more TV antennas on a another rocky outcrop. About 70m past these antennas, the track comes to a large flat rock platform with two more TV antennas and great views over Brooklyn and the Hawkesbury River.
Tumblecow 2 flat rock
Alt = 120 m
The Tumblecow 2 flat rock is an informal, unnamed and unfenced lookout on the Highway Ridge track above Little Wobby. The rock provides great views across the Hawkesbury River over Brooklyn, Dangar Island and the Hawkesbury River Railway Bridges. There are two TV antennas on the north side of the rock platform (form the houses far below). The name Tumblecow 2 flat rock is derived from the name of the cliff line Tumblecow2, an informal name used by locals. The large clearing is a great spot to rest and enjoy the view.
Tumblecow 2 flat rock
Tank Creek Crossing Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 2.6 km
Time = 57 mins
Climb = 99 m
Descent = -154 m
Continue straight: From Tumblecow 2 flat rock view, this walk follows the track north past the two TV antennas (keeping the water views to the left). The track heads into the bush and passes a few more great views over the Hawkesbury River and, about 800m after flat rock, the track leaves the Tumblecow2 cliff top to round Big Ben (a 185m hill). The track then winds through the bush for some time, passing a view to Patonga Creek (on the right) and climbing down some rocks and following the track until it opens up on a large rock platform. The track crosses the first creek (Tank Creek) to come to an intersection with a track on the right, at the top of the rock platform.
Alt = 64 m
Rocky Ponds is a series of cascades, waterholes and falls at the lower end of Tank Creek, near the junction with Gordon Creek. Tank Creek flows over a wide, solid rock bed, the rock having a reddish colour. There a several small overhangs and ponds carved into the rock. This area is a fantastic spot to rest, cool down and enjoy the water and view. From the lower end of the creek, there are fantastic view over the Hawkesbury River.
Tank Creek Crossing
Tank Creek last fall Optional sidetrip: Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 360 m
Time = 7 mins
Climb = 1 m
Descent = -27 m
Veer left: From the rock platform on Tank Creek (just upstream from the junction with Gordon Creek), this walk heads downstream across the rocks (keeping the main creek to the left). After crossing the smaller Gordon Creek, the walk leaves the rock and follows the dirt track downstream (keeping Tanks Creek on the left). About 100m after Gordon Creek, there is a short track, on the left (which leads to Tanks Creek, with views down onto Jeannie's Pool). The walk continues along the main track, past a sandstone boulder (and ignoring a track on the left) then down some stone steps to come to the Jeannie's Pool intersection. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk heads south-west, away from the main rock wall, and follows the track through the grass trees (keeping the valley to the left). The track passes another short track (on the left, leading a rock pool) and a short distance later the track comes next to the creek edge and a large sandstone platform. This is the top of the last waterfall on Tank Creek, with great views up the Hawkesbury River (it is unfenced - care is needed). (Retrace your steps back to the main track, then turn left to continue along this walk.)
Alt = 55 m
Jeannie's Pool is the centrepiece of a series of cascades and pools known as Rocky Ponds, at the lower end of Tank Creek. The pool is half-surrounded by a cliff, with the creek flowing over this cliff to fill the pool below. The northern side of the pool has an overhang nurturing a mossy environment. This is a nice and cool spot to rest and enjoy the creek.
Tank Creek last fall
Alt = 40 m
Tank Creek's last fall is the last significant, unnamed waterfall on Tank Creek before the water flows into Tank Cove on the Hawkesbury River. This vantage point is at the top of the (unfenced) cliff, with a series of waterholes upstream. There are fantastic views up the Hawkesbury River, past Dangar Island into Porto Bay. The rock forms a wide smooth creek bed, making this a special place to stop and enjoy. There is a lovely series of cascades just upstream, known as Allison's cascade.
Tank Creek Crossing
Int of Highway Ridge Track and Tanks Campsite track Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 99 m
Time = 2 mins
Climb = 8 m
Descent = 0 m
Veer right: From the Tank Creek crossing, this walk heads up the main creek (Tank Creek) for a few meters (keeping the creek on the right). The walk soon finds and follows the clear track through the heath, heading north. The track soon steps into a small gully, coming to a tree with exposed roots on the other side. Turn right: From the gully, this walk head upstream through this gully for a few meters. The walk then turns left up the eroded track, coming to a small clearing and a wider sandy track. The walk follows this sandy track up the hill for about 50m before coming to a three-way intersection (with a track leading to the campsite on the left).
Int of Highway Ridge Track and Tanks Campsite track
Tank Creek Campsite Optional sidetrip: Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 52 m
Time = 1 mins
Climb = 1 m
Descent = 0 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk heads west following the smaller track, which soon leads to a clearing with some old gum trees. This is the Tank Creek Campsite. (Retrace your steps back to the main track, then turn left to continue along this walk.)
Tank Creek Campsite
Alt = 73 m
Tank Creek Campsite is just north-east of the junction of Tank Creek and Gordon Gully. The fairly large camping area has no facilities, but there is an established fire circle and natural shade. There are a number of small, more secluded, camping areas radiating out from the main central area. Several tracks lead to the two nearby creeks (treat water before drinking). There is a fair bit of rubbish left behind from other campers, please carry your own out, plus a little extra.
Int of Highway Ridge Track and Tanks Campsite track
Int of Rocky Ponds and the GNW Track: Hard - servicetrail
Length = 4.33 km
Time = 1 hr 19 mins
Climb = 154 m
Descent = -68 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the sandy track north-east, gently uphill through the heath (keeping the valley to the right). After about 250m, the trail widens into an (old) management trail and crosses a small creek (with a large boulder on the left). The trail continues to wind up the hill and is eroded in places. At the top of the rise, the trail heads down through the gully, coming to a three-way intersection with a much wider management trail. Veer left: From the intersection, this walk heads north along the clear management trail, keeping the hill and rocks to the left. After about 750m, the trail heads up a short, steep hill. From here, the trail winds more gently uphill and crosses a long sandstone platform. After the sandstone platform, the trail continues uphill for about 1.3km, flattening out for the last half before coming to a 'T' intersection and a sign pointing back to 'Rocky Ponds Trail'.
Int of Rocky Ponds Trail and Tunnel Track
Mt Wondabyne Peak Optional sidetrip: Track: Hard - servicetrail,bushtrack,bushtrack
Length = 1.52 km
Time = 32 mins
Climb = 90 m
Descent = -9 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow marker and the 'Girrakool' sign north, gently uphill along the wide trail. The trail winds along the side of the hill for just over 450m, to come to a small crest and a clear three-way intersection with the signposted 'Mt Wondabyne' trail (on the left). Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow marker as well as the 'Mt Wondabyne' and 'Girrakool' signs uphill along the management trail. The trail winds up the hill for about 300m find a view of Mount Wondabyne - there are also nice views behind (and to the right) across Woy Woy and the Brisbane Water. The trail continues uphill for another 400m to end at a large clearing (turning circle) at the base of a rock wall. This is the Mt Wondabyne Campsite - there is also a sign pointing back down to 'Patonga'. Turn right: From the clearing (campsite), this walk follows the 'Mooney Mooney rest area' sign north gently uphill along the rocky track. After about 90m, this track comes to a three-way intersection (with the Mt Wondabyne peak track, on the right), marked with a GNW arrow post. Turn right: 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. After about 60m, the track passes a small cave (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, to come to the first peak. The faint track continues along the ridge for another 60m then comes to the main peak, where there is an old trig station and great panoramic views. (Retrace your steps back to the main track, then continue straight to continue along this walk.)
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.
Int of Rocky Ponds Trail and Tunnel Track
Int of Great North Walk and Tunnel Track Track: Moderate - servicetrail
Length = 160 m
Time = 3 mins
Climb = 1 m
Descent = -7 m
Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Patonga' sign south, downhill along the wide trail. After just over 100m, the trail passes through a metal gate and fence then continues for another 50m to come to an intersection with a narrow track (on your left), marked with a GNW arrow post and 'Tunnel Trail' (on your right).
Int of GNW and Tunnel Trail
Woy Woy Landfill site front gates Track: Moderate - bushtrack,servicetrail,road
Length = 2.8 km
Time = 57 mins
Climb = 62 m
Descent = -197 m
Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post directly away from the face of the 'Tunnel Trail' sign along the narrow track. After about 20m, this short track leads to an intersection with the signposted 'Dillons Trail'. Turn left: With the Patonga-bound bush track on the right, this walk follows the management trail east, down the long, gentle hill. The trail gradually steepens as it winds down to the Woy Woy Landfill site. The walk then follows the landfill fence past a building and steps through a gap in the fence. The walk then heads along the gravel driveway to the landfill road. Veer left: From the Woy Woy landfill site, this walk down the road, winding to the bottom where it flattens out at the Woy Woy Landfill front gates (these gates are locked at night but there is a gap for walkers to get through just up to the right of the gates).
Woy Woy Landfill site front gates
Woy Woy train station Walk: Easy - road
Length = 2.92 km
Time = 45 mins
Climb = 6 m
Descent = -21 m
Continue straight: From the landfill gates, this walk follows Nagari Road past the large self-storage facility on the right, and along to the intersection of Shoalhaven Drive. Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows Railway Street through the residential area, past the shopping centre to the Woy Woy train station.
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 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.
Broken Bay Sport and Recreation Centre The main part of the Broken Bay Sport and Recreation Centre is a complex of well maintained buildings and facilities. The site includes accommodation, food hall, swimming pool, large chess set, tennis courts, basket ball courts, flying fox, beach and many walking tracks. The site is available to school groups, community groups and families. Located on the banks of the Hawkesbury River the centre boasts views past West Head and Lion Island out the open ocean. The land owned by the Broken Bay Sport and Recreation Centre extends over much of the ridge to the north. Region: I am not aware of any closures in this park at the moment.
Brisbane Water National ParkLink 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 feesCampingFacilities I am not aware of any closures in this park at the moment.