Canyon picnic area

Warrumbungle National Park

Overview

Canyon picnic area is a fully accessible, family friendly picnic area in Warrumbungle National Park. Not far from the visitor centre, it features barbecues and tables.

Type
Picnic areas
Where
Warrumbungle National Park
Accessibility
Easy
Price
Free
Entry fees
Park entry fees apply
Please note
  • Water is not available at the picnic area so you'll need to bring your own supply

Canyon picnic area is a great spot for a family picnic or barbecue, and you can either lay out your picnic blanket and relax on the grass, or take advantage of one of the picnic tables. The picnic area is accessible to everyone, including curious creatures who might like the look of your lunch.

If you’d like to stretch your legs after cooking up your barbecue lunch, take a short walk downstream where you may see woodland birds and perhaps a lounging koala hiding in the trees. If it's a warm day, you might like to dip your toes in the cool water of Wambelong Creek.

Take a virtual tour of Canyon picnic area captured with Google Street View Trekker.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/picnic-areas/canyon-picnic-area/local-alerts

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about the Canyon picnic area.

Getting there and parking

Canyon picnic area is in the central precinct of Warrumbungle National Park. To get there:

  • Travel along John Renshaw Parkway from Coonabarabran
  • Upon entering the park, take the turn-off to the visitor centre
  • Continue along the road to Canyon picnic area

Road quality

  • Unsealed roads

Vehicle access

  • 2WD vehicles

Parking

Parking is available at the Canyon picnic area.

Best times to visit

You may experience a great range of temperatures on any day in the park. In summer it's generally hot in the daytime and temperatures often exceed 30C. In contrast, winter can be very cold and the temperature drops below freezing at night. Rainfall is also highly variable, ranging from drought to prolonged wet periods. Less rain falls on the western side of the park than on the eastern side. It rains most from December to February and the annual average rainfall is 720mm. Thunderstorms are common in mid to late summer.

Spring

During early spring wildflowers are in bloom, including a huge variety of golden wattle flowers With a more moderate climate, spring is a great time to get out and camp under the stars .

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature

Average

15°C and 30°C

Highest recorded

42.6°C

Winter temperature

Average

0°C and 15°C

Lowest recorded

-9°C

Rainfall

Wettest month

January

Driest month

September

The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

176.3mm

Facilities

Toilets

  • Non-flush toilets

Picnic tables

Barbecue facilities

  • Gas/electric barbecues (free)

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency + app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).

River and lake safety

The aquatic environment around rivers, lakes and lagoons can be unpredictable. If you're visiting these areas, take note of these river and lake safety tips.

Accessibility

Disability access level - easy

This area is fully wheelchair accessible. 

Prohibited

Pets

Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted. Find out which regional parks allow dog walking and see the pets in parks policy for more information.

Smoking

NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

Visitor centre

Nearby towns

Coonabarabran (29 km)

Coonabarabran is the closest town to the craggy peaks and spires of the Warrumbungle Ranges. Warrumbungle National Park is popular for bushwalking, camping and encountering wildlife amid breathtaking scenery.

www.visitnsw.com

Dunedoo (84 km)

Dunedoo is the perfect spot for a picturesque stopover because of its proximity to Mudgee, Dubbo and Warrumbungle National Park. Dunedoo is also home to the fantastic three-day Bush Poetry Festival.

www.visitnsw.com

Gilgandra (54 km)

Just a 50-minute drive north of Gilgandra are the majestic Warrumbungles - an area of forested ridges, barren spires, deep gorges and walking tracks. Warrumbungle National Park has some excellent day walks, such as the Breadknife and Grand High Tops walk.

www.visitnsw.com

Learn more

Canyon picnic area is in Warrumbungle National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

Aboriginal dreamtime

The view across the mountain range, Warrumbungle National Park. Photo: Rob Cleary

Warrumbungle is a Gamilaroi (also written Gamilaraay) word meaning crooked mountain, and for many thousands of years it has been a spiritual place for the custodians of this land, the Gamilaroi, the Wiradjuri and the Weilwan. The landscape, plants and animals of the park are a constant reminder of its sacred significance to Aboriginal people today. Take an Aboriginal Discovery guided tour to find out more about the Aboriginal cultural heritage.

Diversity of wildlife

Kangaroos, Warrumbungle National Park. Photo: Rob Cleary

Warrumbungle National Park has a rich diversity of landforms and microclimates, and provides a habitat for hundreds of plant and animal species in the area. Flourishing with vibrant Warrumbungle Range wattle, geebung and broad-leaf hop-bush, there's an abundance of rich birdlife in the area, including species such as emus, wedge-tailed eagles and boobook owls - just a few of over 190 bird species recorded in the park. If you're lucky, you may also spot wildlife such as the ringtail possum, greater glider and brush-tailed rock wallaby. Be sure to also keep an eye out for blue-tongue lizards and lace monitors rustling through the bush.

  • Burbie Canyon walking track Burbie Canyon walking track in Warrumbungle National Park offers a gentle 2km stroll through a sandstone gorge, and is particularly popular for birdwatching.

Landscape and geology

Rocky pinnacle, Warrumbungle National Park. Photo: Steve Alton

The landscape of Warrumbungle National Park has been shaped by thousands of years of volcanic activity; spend some time looking at Crater Bluff and Belougery Spire and imagine the vents of magma that once erupted to create these formations. Old lava flows created at Mount Exmouth and Siding Spring Mountain, just outside the boundary of the park and Belougery Split Rock and Bluff Mountain are great examples of volcanic action. The most iconic feature in the park, The Breadknife, is a volcanic dyke which stands a massive 90m tall.

  • Bluff Mountain walking track Bluff Mountain walking track rewards experienced, fit bushwalkers with Warrumbungle National Park’s best views. This very long and challenging steep hike climbs past spectacular rock spires and domes—up to the summit of Bluff Mountain.
  • Breadknife and Grand High Tops walk Breadknife and Grand High Tops walk in Warrumbungle National Park, regarded as one of the best walks in NSW, offers close up views of the park’s iconic rock formations.
  • Burbie Canyon walking track Burbie Canyon walking track in Warrumbungle National Park offers a gentle 2km stroll through a sandstone gorge, and is particularly popular for birdwatching.
  • Coonabarabran - Warrumbungle - Tooraweenah drive Coonabarabran – Warrumbungle – Tooraweenah drive offers car touring through scenic mountain views with picnicking, walking, and wheelchair accessible facilities in Warrumbungle National Park.

Wish upon a star

Whitegum lookout, Warrumbungle National Park. Photo: Rob Cleary

Warrumbungle National Park is Australia’s only Dark Sky Park. Nearby Coonabarabran is known as the 'Astronomy Capital of Australia'. Stargaze from your campsite, or if you want to see right up to the heavens, visit the Siding Springs Observatory. The dramatic mix of volcanic spires and domes, plateaus, forested ridges and tall volcanic dykes are bound to make even the youngest of photographers look good, so whatever you do ‐ don't forget your camera.

  • Canyon picnic area Canyon picnic area is a fully accessible, family friendly picnic area in Warrumbungle National Park. Not far from the visitor centre, it features barbecues and tables.
  • Warrumbungle Visitor Centre Visitor information is available at the Warrumbungle Visitor Centre, which is now back in its original location. Get great suggestions and tips for walking and camping in Warrumbungle National Park.
  • Whitegum lookout Whitegum lookout in Warrumbungle National Park features spectacular views of the landscape and picnic tables. It is wheelchair accessible and an easy walk for children.

Plants and animals you may see

Animals

  • Wedge-tailed eagle. Photo: Kelly Nowak

    Wedge-tailed eagle (Aquila audax)

    With a wingspan of up to 2.5m, the wedge-tailed eagle is Australia’s largest bird of prey. These Australian animals are found in woodlands across NSW, and have the ability to soar to heights of over 2km. If you’re bird watching, look out for the distinctive diamond-shaped tail of the eagle.

  • Superb fairy wren. Photo: Ingo Oeland

    Superb fairy wren (Malurus cyaneus)

    The striking blue and black plumage of the adult male superb fairy wren makes for colourful bird watching across south-eastern Australia. The sociable superb fairy wrens, or blue wrens, are Australian birds living in groups consisting of a dominant male, mouse-brown female ‘jenny wrens’ and several tawny-brown juveniles.

  • Southern boobook. Photo: David Cook

    Southern boobook (Ninox novaeseelandiae)

    The southern boobook, also known as the mopoke, is the smallest and most common native owl in Australia. With a musical 'boo-book' call that echoes through forests and woodlands, the southern boobook is a great one to look out for while bird watching.

  • Tawny frogmouth. Photo: Rosie Nicolai

    Tawny frogmouth (Podargus strigoides)

    Found throughout Australia, the tawny frogmouth is often mistaken for an owl due to its wide, powerful beak, large head and nocturnal hunting habits. The ‘oom oom oom’ call of this native bird can be heard echoing throughout a range of habitats including heath, woodlands and urban areas.

  • Closeup of a laughing kookaburra's head and body. Photo: Rosie Nicolai/OEH

    Kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae)

    Of the 2 species of kookaburra found in Australia, the laughing kookaburra is the best-known and the largest of the native kingfishers. With its distinctive riotous call, the laughing kookaburra is commonly heard in open woodlands and forests throughout NSW national parks, making these ideal spots for bird watching.

Environments in this park

Education resources (1)

Canyon Picnic Area, Warrumbungle National Park. Photo: Rob Cleary