This is a scenic and rather cultural walk, with two significant Indigenous sites along the way. The walk sets out from Campfire Creek car park following the creek of similar name to the amazing Red Hands Caves. The second site is the grinding grooves, which are passed on the return to the car park along the ridge. A great walk with much to see.
(open in app)
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 Red Hands Cave Circuit via Campfire Creek bushwalking track
Analysis and summary of the altitude variation on the Red Hands Cave Circuit via Campfire Creek 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.
3 hrs 45 mins
Very steep (4/6)
Quality of track
Rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely (4/6)
No directional signs (5/6)
Moderate level of bushwalking experience recommended (4/6)
Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)
No facilities provided (5/6)
*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
6km of this walk has short steep hills and another 1.8km has gentle hills with occasional steps. The remaining (900m) is very steep.
Quality of track
8km of this walk follows a formed track, with some branches and other obstacles and another 710m follows a rough track, where fallen trees and other obstacles are likely. The remaining (190m) follows a clear and well formed track or trail.
4.8km of this walk has directional signs at most intersection and another 2.9km is clearly signposted. The remaining (710m) Has no directional signs.
Around 8km of this walk requires no previous bushwalking experience, whilst the remaining 710m requires a leader a with moderate level of bushwalking experience.
Around 8km of this walk is not usually affected by severe weather events (that would unexpectedly impact safety and navigation), whilst the remaining 710m is affected by storms that may impact your navigation and safety.
5km of this walk is close to useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats) and another 2.4km has limited facilities (such as not all cliffs fenced). The remaining (710m) has no facilities provided.
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Campfire Creek car park
Int. Red Hands Cave and Carpark Trk Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 191 m
Time = 7 mins
Climb = 0 m
Descent = -42 m
From the car park, the track follows the 'Campfire Creek' sign down the hill. The track steeply descends the hill, winding to a 'Car Park' sign (pointing back the way you came).
Eastern side of Causeway
Int. Red Hands Cave and Carpark Trk Alternate Entry:
Track: Moderate - road,bushtrack
( Show detail)
Length = 56 m
Time = 1 mins
Climb = 3 m
Descent = -1 m
Turn left: From the paved area side of the causeway, the walk crosses the creek via the causeway, then heads to the area beneath the 'Camp Fire Creek Track' sign. The causeway may be impassable after rain. Turn right: From the causeway, the walk follows the 'Camp Fire Creek Track' sign along the water's edge to the signposts for 'Red Hands Cave' and 'Car park'. Continue straight to join the main walk, following the notes from 0.19km 'Int. Red Hands Cave and Carpark Trk'.
Int. Red Hands Cave and Carpark Trk
Red Hands Cave Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 3.02 km
Time = 1 hr 11 mins
Climb = 206 m
Descent = -91 m
Turn left: From the intersection, the walk follows the 'Red Hands Cave' sign, keeping the creek to the right. The track winds and undulates, soon coming to a rock platform which crosses a creek (with the gully on the left). Here, the walk continues along the lower track, not heading up the rock steps. The track continues along the hillside and comes to a sign titled 'Neighbours'. Continue straight: From the intersection, the walk heads across the small bridge and up the track. The walk soon passes over another small wooden bridge and then continues through the bush, with the creek on the right. Winding for a short time, the track comes to an un-signposted intersection. Turn left: From the intersection, the walk heads up the hill, winding above the creek (on the right). The track follows the hillside for quite some time, passing near the creek in places, before coming to a 'Glenbrook Causeway' sign. Continue straight: From the intersection, the walk follows the 'Red Hands Cave' sign down across the creek. The track leads over a small rise across another smaller creek, then follows the hillside for a short while, passing a bench seat and then a small log bridge. The track then starts tending left, heading up to a rocky outcrop where the walk arrives at the metal verandah of Red Hands Cave.
Red Hands Cave
Alt = 178 m
Red Hands Cave, in the Glenbrook area of the Blue Mountains National Park, is found near the end of Red Hands Cave fire trail. The cave has quite a few hand stencils and prints of various colours (including red). The cave is well protected, with a perspex and steel cage. There are some information signs and some artifacts to help visitors learn more about the people who made these prints over 1600 years ago. In 1913, when searching for a lost child, this cave was found by Europeans and is now protected.
Red Hands Cave
Red Hands Cave car park Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 503 m
Time = 12 mins
Climb = 41 m
Descent = -10 m
Continue straight: From Red Hands Cave, the walk heads up the stairs, winding to be above Red Hands Cave. The track then continues across the rocky surface, slowly climbing through the bush and leading away from the rock outcrop. The track winds through a few rocky outcrops, tending right, before coming to a car park and 'Red Hands Cave' sign (pointing back to the cave).
Red Hands Cave Picnic Area
Alt = 208 m
Red Hands Cave Picnic Area is found at the end of the Red Hands Cave Fire Trail in the Glenbrook area of the Blue Mountains National Park. The small picnic area is next to the car park and has a couple of platforms (to act as both a table and seat) as well as a fire place and toilet. The toilet itself is wheelchair accessible, but access to the toilet is over moderately rough terrain. A good spot to rest when exploring Red Hands Cave.
Red Hands Cave car park
Axe Grinding Grooves Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 2.08 km
Time = 44 mins
Climb = 42 m
Descent = -161 m
Turn left : From Red Hands Cave car park, the walk follows the sign for the 'Link Track' past the bench and fireplace and into the bush. The track winds down the hill via many steps, winding for quite some time, then comes near a creek, which it loosely follows. The walk then crosses this creek to the signposts on the other side. Turn left: From the creek intersection, the walk follows the 'Glenbrook Causeway' sign, keeping the water on the left. The track continues up to a rock overhang from where it heads down the hill, coming near the creek again. The track follows the creek to a junction with another creek. To the left is a large sandstone area and approximately 10m along the track is a sign explaining the grooves in the sandstone.
Axe Grinding Grooves
Alt = 87 m
These well-defined axe grinding groves are found on the sandstone bed of Camp Fire Creek. The grooves were formed by Aboriginal people when sharpening axes (or forming axe blanks). Rubbing the axe blanks would sharpen the stone into a more useful tool, and the process would also wear the sandstone, leaving these markings. These sites are typically found near water, as the water was added to make the stone more abrasive. Sites like this will fade in time due to erosion of the sandstone - please help them last as long as possible by not walking on, or close to the grooves. More info
Axe Grinding Grooves
Campfire Creek car park Route: Hard - undefined,bushtrack,bushtrack,bushtrack
Length = 2.61 km
Time = 54 mins
Climb = 107 m
Descent = -89 m
Turn sharp right: From where the main track crosses the small side creek (just above the axe grinding site), this walk follows the rocky side creek south-east, upstream. After about 20m, the gully splits in two. This walk follows a narrow track on the spur between these two creeks. The track heads up the spur line and crosses a number of rocky outcrops. Near the top of the hill, the bush becomes quiet dense. The track then opens out on the wide Oaks cycleway. Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the wide track north as it bends to the right and heads down the hill into the more open forest. The track soon passes a blue 'Shared use' sign and comes to an intersection with a short but wide road access track. Continue straight: From the intersection, the walk heads up the management trail, away from the road and the blue sign. The trail winds for a short time, follow a 'Cycling Track' sign down a track. The track winds down through the bush to an area where the track splits and then joins back together again. The walk then comes to a clearer area with access to the road on the right and a few log stumps in the clearing. Veer left: From the log stumps in the intersection, the walk heads down the hill, keeping the road on the right. The track winds down to a very sandy section of track before heading up and across the hill. The track passes over a few rocky surfaces and passes a road-access track (on the right) before heading down the hill. The track is very rocky as it leads down to the hairpin corner in the road, where the car park is located. The track heads across the car park, keeping the road on the right, and arrives at the signpost.
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 4 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