This walk, between Epping and Thornleigh Stations, follows Devlins Creek then Lane Cove River as they wind through the valley. There are a number of interesting rock features to enjoy along the walk. The walk starts and ends near shops, so you can fill up with a coffee or a bite to eat at each end. From Whale Rock, the track becomes wide and very easy to follow.
(open in app)
Cross sectional view of the Epping to Thornleigh Station bushwalking track
Analysis and summary of the altitude variation on the Epping to Thornleigh Station 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.
Very steep (4/6)
Quality of track
Formed track, with some branches and other obstacles (3/6)
Directional signs along the way (3/6)
Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)
Limited facilities, not all cliffs are fenced (3/6)
*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
5km of this walk has gentle hills with occasional steps and another 1.9km is flat with no steps. Whilst another 630m has short steep hills and the remaining 230m is very steep.
Quality of track
4.7km of this walk follows a clear and well formed track or trail and another 1.9km follows a smooth and hardened path. The remaining (1.5km) follows a formed track, with some branches and other obstacles.
Around 6km of this walk is clearly signposted, whilst the remaining 2.1km has directional signs at most intersection.
Around 4.1km of this walk requires no previous bushwalking experience, whilst the remaining 3.9km requires some bushwalking experience.
Around 4.7km of this walk is not usually affected by severe weather events (that would unexpectedly impact safety and navigation), whilst the remaining 3.2km is affected by storms that may impact your navigation and safety.
Around 4.1km of this walk has limited facilities (such as not all cliffs fenced), whilst the remaining 3.9km is close to useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats).
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Int of Derby street service trail Path: Easy - Wheelchair accessible - road
Length = 938 m
Time = 18 mins
Climb = 3 m
Descent = -33 m
The walk exits Epping Station on the Oxford St side. The walk then crosses Cambridge St and continues down Oxford St. The walk follows the footpath past the shops down Oxford St passing Chester St, Surrey St. Just after Surry St the walk turns left onto Derby St to the end. Nearing the end of Derby St the walk tends left around the yellow gate and onto the concrete driveway which veers left off the road. The walk continues towards the tunnel to come to an intersection just before the tunnel entrance.
Int of Derby street service trail
Int of Epping Trk and Malton Rd Trail Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 1.49 km
Time = 25 mins
Climb = 7 m
Descent = -21 m
Veer right: From the intersection this walk follows the Great North Walk arrow up the couple of steps then down along the footpath through the tunnel under the M2 (keeping the creek and wider management trail to your left). Out of the tunnel this walk follows the track as it winds up and around the fenced sewage vent and then continues through the dense bushland in the gully passing a sign marking the entrance to Lane Cove National Park. A little while later the track leads to a signposted intersection with the 'Belinda Crs' management trail. Turn left: From the intersection the track follows the Whale Rock sign down the service trail which narrows into a bushtrack and follows Devlin creek through the gully all the way along until it widens out into a rocky service trail again and comes to the intersection of the Cheltenham service trail.
Int of Epping Trk and Malton Rd Trail
Big Ducky Waterhole Walk: Easy - servicetrail
Length = 187 m
Time = 3 mins
Climb = 3 m
Descent = -1 m
Continue straight: From the intersection the track follows the Lane Cove River arrow along the servicetrail for a while before it loops around the top of Big Ducky Waterhole.
Big Ducky Waterhole
Alt = 49 m
The servicetrail loops around the top of the Big Ducky waterhole and there is a nice rock overhang in which to break. Is also a popular bird watching area. Unfortunately, recently there has been large quantities of rubbish in the area. (If going down to the waterhole please consider carrying out some of the rubbish if every walker carrys out a bit it will make a difference)
Big Ducky Waterhole
Whale Rock Walk: Easy - servicetrail
Length = 479 m
Time = 8 mins
Climb = 6 m
Descent = -9 m
Continue straight: From the top of Big Ducky Waterhole the continues through the valley keeping Devlins Creek below on the left of the track all the way to Whale Rock.
Alt = 48 m
This is a large boulder that looks eerily like a whale, complete with eye socket. It is a good place to break and climb around the Rock.
Conscript Pass Track: Moderate - servicetrail,bushtrack
Length = 3.29 km
Time = 1 hr 3 mins
Climb = 102 m
Descent = -65 m
Continue straight: From Whale Rock the track follows the Penant Hills Park arrow along the service trail as it winds through the valley, crossing several small concrete creek crossings until it comes to the signposted intersection of the Pennant Hills ovals service trail. Continue straight: From the intersection the track follows the Thornleigh via Great North Walk arrow down the short but steep hill and across the river at the causeway. On the other side of the river the track comes up to the intersection of the Great North Walk service trail. Turn left: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Thornleigh Station' sign past the 'Lane Cove Valley' map, initially keeping the other trail and river to your left. The trail follows the valley floor, keeping the river just to your left, for a bit over 500m, to then cross the Lane Cove River at a rocky ford. This crossing may become impassable after heavy or prolonged rain. On the other side of the river, this walk continues along the trail for about 400m (with the river now close by on your right) to come to an intersection with a faint track (on your left, that leads up towards Pennant Hills Park). Continue straight: From the intersection, the walk follows the management trail, keeping the river just to your right. After about 60m, the trail bends right and crosses the Lane Cove River at a rocky ford, then continues along the valley floor among the fern trees (and concrete pipe access points) for about 900m to cross the Lane Cove River again at another rocky ford. (These crossings may become impassable after heavy or prolonged rain). The trail then continues along the valley floor (with the river now on your left) for just over 150m to come to an intersection at the bottom of the sealed Morona Ave trail (on your right), marked with a 'Lane Cove Valley' map/sign and a GNW arrow post. Veer left: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post along the valley floor, away from the two trails, keeping the river just to your left. The track soon narrows, leading past a water depth indicator, and becomes rocky for about 150m before coming to a faint intersection, where GNW arrow post points left. Here, the walk turns left and crosses the Lane Cove River using the concrete stepping stones (this crossing may become impassable after heavy or prolonged rain) to follow the 'Thornleigh Station' sign up the timber steps for about 40m and find a GNW registration box (damaged at time of writing). The track bends sharply right and zigzags up the rocky hill for another 30m, before bending sharply left to find the 'Conscript Pass' and 'B Stevens' engravings (at the third metal hand rail).
Alt = 85 m
Conscript Pass is a small sandstone pass between the Lane Cove River and Thornleigh, on the Great North Walk. During the 1930s, some stone steps were built through a cleft in the rock as part of a public works program, in response to the depression. The pass has two main engravings. Firstly 'Conscript Pass' is followed with a downwards pointing arrow and a series of initials and numbers. On another wall (that you face when walking up) is engraved 'B Stevens' followed a surprisingly good caricature of the then Premier of NSW, Bertram Stevens. Stevens (later knighted) replaced Jack Lang in 1932 as Premier of NSW, when Lang was dismissed by the Governor (just two months Lang after opening the Sydney Harbour Bridge).
Int of the GNW and Lorna Pass tracks Track: Moderate - bushtrack
Length = 104 m
Time = 3 mins
Climb = 19 m
Descent = 0 m
Continue straight: From 'Conscript Pass', this walk heads up the stone steps through the cleft in the rock to follow the track and more stone steps uphill for about 100m, coming to a T-intersection with Lorna Pass track, marked with a GNW arrow post.
Int of the GNW and Lorna Pass tracks
Int of Handley and Ferguson Avenues Track: Hard - bushtrack
Length = 581 m
Time = 14 mins
Climb = 50 m
Descent = 0 m
Veer left: From the intersection, the walk follows the 'Thornleigh' sign uphill along the rocky track, keeping the valley to your left. The track leads up a series of timber steps for about 230m, becoming steeper as they go, to come to a clear T-intersection signposted with a large 'The Great North Walk' sign, and a stone 'Lorna Pass' arrow pointing back down the track. Veer right: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post and 'Thornleigh Station' sign uphill along the wide rocky track. After just over 150m, the track bends left (ignoring a faint track on your right) and heads uphill for another 40m to come to the back (south-east corner) of Thornleigh Oval, marked with a 'Lane Cove National Park' signpost. Turn right: From the intersection, this walk follows the GNW arrow post along the fence line around the oval, keeping the oval to your left. After about 100m, this walk passes in front of the clubhouse (there are toilets and a water tap on your right) to pass a 'Great North Walk' sign and come to the corner of 'Handley' and 'Ferguson' Avenues in front of the 'Thornleigh Oval' sign.
Alt = 155 m
Thornleigh Oval is found at the intersection of Handley and Ferguson Avenues, Thornleigh. There is a large playing field, tap water, public toilets and some shelter in the awning of the club house. The oval has a car park, and a number io signs for the Great North walk and other local tracks.
Int of Handley and Ferguson Avenues
Int of Railway Parade and Pennant Hills Road overpass steps Path: Easy - Wheelchair accessible - footpath
Length = 813 m
Time = 14 mins
Climb = 18 m
Descent = -4 m
Continue straight: From the intersection, this walk follows the 'Thornleigh Station' sign across the road to follow the footpath beside 'Handley Ave'. After about 130m, the walk crosses Clifford Ave then after about 250m, crosses 'Orchard St' to follow 'Station St' almost directly ahead. About 190m along 'Station St', this walk continues straight across 'Wood St' (you can get to Parkway Plaza if you turn right here) and continues for just over 200m to find a footbridge beside Pennant Hills Rd. Here the walk heads up the ramp and crosses over the busy road then down the ramp (or steps) to find the intersection with Railway Parade.
Zacs Great Food
Alt = 170 m
This restaurant can be found on Pennont Hills road just a stones throw from the station. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner with a continental menu ranging from about $20. for a meal. The opening hours are from 6.oo am to 10.00 pm from Tuesdays to Saterdays, and closed Sundays and Mondays. For more information on bookings call (02) 9484 6799.
Alt = 167 m
This branch of the popular sandwich chain Subway, who make a variety of subs and sandwiches as you order them. For more details contact the store on (02) 9481 4200 or visit at Shop 2, 291 Pennant Hills Rd, Thornleigh, NSW 2120. More info
Int of Railway Parade and Pennant Hills Road overpass steps
Thornleigh Train Station Walk: Easy - footpath
Length = 110 m
Time = 2 mins
Climb = 1 m
Descent = -1 m
Veer left: From the base of the steps, this walk follows the GNW arrow across 'Railway Pde', heading towards the train line. At the fence, this walk veers left and leads along the pedestrian alley for about 60m before turning right and climbing up the railway bridge steps, coming to the 'Thornleigh' 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 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.
Lane Cove National ParkLink to official closures and fire bans page This small but picturesque city park is a haven of peaceful bushland along the winding Lane Cove River. Home to the Kukundi Wildlife Shelter and 27 km of the Great North Walk, you can also hire a boat, take a stroll or enjoy a picnic by the weir. Region: Sydney & Surrounds Park feesCampingFacilities Current Park Closure information for Lane Cove National Park Closure information last downloaded Sunday 27th of September 2015 07:00 AM Closed areas: Terrys Creek walking track maintenance Some areas of this park will experience temporary disruptions and delays due to walking track maintenance, unless the closure is otherwise extended or removed. Closed areas are:
Bradley Reserve Bradley Reserve is a large natural bushland area owned and managed by Ku-ring-gai council. The reserve extends from Lane Cove River to the end of Kissing Point Road north to George Christie playing fields. The reserve is home to the locally well know STEP track, and is cared for by the STEP inc, the "South Turramurra Environment Protection". The Great north walk also heads through this reserve, and is also home to Browns water hole. Region: I am not aware of any closures in this park at the moment.
Berowra Valley National ParkLink to official closures and fire bans page Following the Berowra Creek the Berowra Valley National Park is located on the Hornsby Plateau and is made up of typical Hawkesbury Sandstone. The great North walk, Benowie walking track, and many other great walks stretch spann this park. The area has varied vegetation including many different sorts of Eucalyptus and plenty of native animals, includingl swamp wallibies, water dragons, bandicoots, Lyre Birds, and bush turkeys. There are several campsites within the Park, and Crosslands Reserve is also a popular spot near the middle of the park. Region: Sydney & Surrounds Park feesCamping Current Park Closure information for Berowra Valley National Park Closure information last downloaded Sunday 27th of September 2015 07:00 AM Safety alerts: Quarry trail and Benowie walking track restricted access Access restrictions are in place along trails that traverse the land managed by the Hornsby Rifle Range. Restricted areas include:
an 800m section of trail, 2km in from the Quarry Road entrance at Dural
an 800m section of trail, 300m in from the Stewart Avenue entrance at Hornsby
a 750m section of the Benowie walking track between Steele Bridge and Fishponds Waterholes.
Shooting times are between 9am and 4.30pm, 7 days a week. All visitors wishing to access the restricted sections of trail during these times must request prior authorisation by contacting the Hornsby Rifle Range on their 24 hour contact number 0417 201 606. Consult the map on Page vii of the Berowra Valley National Park Draft Plan of Management to plan alternative routes during these hours. Visit the website for further information about the Hornsby Rifle Range.