Basin loop track

Copeland Tops State Conservation Area

Overview

Basin loop track continues from Hidden Treasure track to form a longer walk with scenic views of Copeland Tops State Conservation Area via historic Old Copeland Road.

Where
Copeland Tops State Conservation Area
Distance
7km loop
Time suggested
3hrs 30min - 4hrs 30min
Grade
Grade 3
Price
Free
What to
bring
Drinking water, hat, sunscreen, sturdy shoes
Please note
  • There's no mobile reception in this park
  • Remember to take your binoculars if you want to bird watch

For those who really like to stretch their legs, Basin loop track is the longest walking trail in Copeland Tops. This continuation of Hidden Treasure track follows, for the northern part of its loop, historic Old Copeland Road. The track will lead you through dry rainforest to open forest that lines the ridge tops of this area. See how the vegetation changes along the way from red cedars, giant stinging trees and strangler figs in the moister, more protected sections of rainforest, to Sydney blue gums and Craven grey box in the sclerophyll forest on the more exposed and drier ridges.

There’s an abundance of birds, so take along binoculars for birdwatching. Many of the park’s animals are nocturnal, but have been known to sometimes keep odd hours. Koalas can, of course, be seen at any time dozing off high up in the fork of gum trees, so keep your eyes peeled.

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/walking-tracks/basin-loop-track/local-alerts

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Basin loop track.

Track grading

Grade 3

Learn more about the grading system Features of this track
  • Time

    3hrs 30min - 4hrs 30min

  • Quality of markings

    Clearly sign posted

  • Gradient

    Gentle hills

  • Distance

    7km loop

  • Steps

    Occasional steps

  • Quality of path

    Formed track, some obstacles

  • Experience required

    Some bushwalking experience recommended

Getting there and parking

On entering Copeland Tops State Conservation Area:

  • Park at the carpark at the end of Copeland Road
  • Look for signs to Hidden Treasure track
  • Follow this track until you see a sign to Basin loop track

Parking

Parking is available at Basin loop track. Bus parking is available. It can be a busy place on the weekend, so parking might be limited then.

Best times to visit

There are lots of great things waiting for you in Copeland Tops State Conservation Area.

Spring

This season offers mild walking conditions as well as the chance to witness bird migration. For instance, the wompoo fruit-dove – Australia's largest fruit dove – migrates from lower elevations in winter to upland forests in the warmer months.

Summer

There's nothing like rainforest to keep you cool; it's always several degrees less beneath the protective canopy, so enjoy following the park's walking tracks and finding shady places to picnic during the hotter months. The park's raised elevation also contributes to these milder conditions.

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature

Average

17°C and 26°C

Highest recorded

28°C

Winter temperature

Average

6.7°C and 14.5°C

Lowest recorded

7°C

Rainfall

Wettest month

February

Driest month

July

The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

261.6mm

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

Bushwalking safety

If you're keen to head out on a longer walk or a backpack camp, always be prepared. Read these bushwalking safety tips before you set off on a walking adventure in national parks.

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.

Prohibited

Gathering firewood

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.

Nearby towns

Dungog (42 km)

Dungog is a country town with character, backed by magnificent rolling hills, national parks and state forests. It's in the heart of dairy and beef cattle country.

www.visitnsw.com

Gloucester (15 km)

Famous for gold deposits and the bushranger Captain Thunderbolt, Gloucester is located in the north Hunter region, east of Barrington Tops. The nearby state forests and national parks are ideal for walking, camping and outdoor adventure sports.

www.visitnsw.com

Taree (65 km)

Taree is a major mid North Coast city, ringed by superb beaches. It's situated on the Manning River and set against rolling hills.

www.visitnsw.com

Learn more

Basin loop track is in Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

From little things big things grow

Wildflowers in bloom in Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

From the delicate epiphytes, only one cell in width, to the gnarled sprawling branches of the ancient grey myrtles, each plant has its place within the ecosystem of the rare dry rainforest. The tract within Copeland Tops is the largest accessible section in the district of Gloucester. Take a walk through the green corridors overhung by strangler figs, shatterwood and grey myrtle. On the ground between mossy rocks and on the sides of trees grow birds nest ferns, staghorns, elkhorns and orchids. The rare stuttering frog is commonly heard around these parts, its call emitting from a preferred habitat of stream-side leaf litter. Its repetitive song is often joined by the screech of glossy black-cockatoos, the "wollack-wa-hoo" of the wompoo fruit-dove and the unpredictable calls of lyrebirds. At night, the masked, powerful and sooty owls come out to hunt and hoot.

  • Basin loop track Basin loop track continues from Hidden Treasure track to form a longer walk with scenic views of Copeland Tops State Conservation Area via historic Old Copeland Road.
  • Hidden Treasure track Hidden Treasure track is a walking route through rainforest that takes in remnants of the area's mining heritage, including a historic boiler and disused mine entrance.

Land of plenty

Rolling hills of Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

This is the traditional lands of the Worimi and Biripi people who live in the area and previously moved around in response to the seasonal availability of food. Such a broad ecosystem would have provided many resources for medicinal, ceremonial and cultural purposes. It is very likely that people travelling from the coast to Barrington Tops area would have passed through Copeland Tops. Their history will forever be an integral part of this landscape.

Striking it rich

Abandoned gold mine relics, Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. Photo: Brent Mail

It was the red cedar cutters who, battling to log 'red gold' in this unforgiving terrain from the early 1800s, first discovered gold here in 1875. The area soon became known as Copeland and over the next 60 years more than 50 gold mines were dug in the area. According to the records, over 1800kg of the valuable metal were extracted during that time. Many relics of this mining heritage remain in the form of historic sites and derelict equipment. However, the bushland and rainforest now dominate once again.

  • Basin loop track Basin loop track continues from Hidden Treasure track to form a longer walk with scenic views of Copeland Tops State Conservation Area via historic Old Copeland Road.
  • Hidden Treasure track Hidden Treasure track is a walking route through rainforest that takes in remnants of the area's mining heritage, including a historic boiler and disused mine entrance.
  • It's gold! This excursion experience has been updated and is now being delivered in line with the new NSW Department of Education Curriculum. We will be revising this excursion's name and information online soon. Contact your local national parks office for more information about the updated excursion.
  • Mountain Maid gold mine Guided tours through Mountain Maid gold mine are available for visitors to Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. Walking tours start from Hidden Treasure picnic area.

Education resources (1)

School excursions (1)

Basin Loop walking track, Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer.