Escarpment walk

Guy Fawkes River National Park

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Overview

Escarpment walk in Guy Fawkes River National Park is a forest walk that takes hikers past Chaelundi Falls and Lucifers Thumb, all the way to Spring Gully picnic area.

Distance
13km loop
Time suggested
5 - 7hrs
Grade
Grade 4
What to
bring
Drinking water, hat, suitable clothing, sunscreen
Please note
  • From the start of Escarpment walk, Chaelundi Falls is 500m, Lucifers Thumb is 2km, and Spring Gully picnic area is 8km.
  • Remember to take your binoculars if you want to birdwatch

Follow the lovely Escarpment walk to Chaelundi Falls for amazing views of the falls tumbling down into the valley. A bit further along the track, you’ll come to Lucifer’s Thumb, a finger of rock that spreads out into the gorge. Take a seat and enjoy breathtaking 180-degrees views out over the park and Guy Fawkes River.

The walk to the waterfall is a fairly level, easy walk for young children, with a spectacular reward at its end. If you want to walk further, you can head all the way to the Spring Gully picnic area, 8km from the campground.

Along the way, keep your eyes peeled for endangered brush-tailed rock-wallabies and jacky lizards sunning themselves on the rocks, as well as the peregrine falcon, the fastest bird in the world.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Map


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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/escarpment-walk/local-alerts

General enquiries

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Escarpment walk.

Track grading

Grade 4

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

    5 - 7hrs

  • Quality of markings

    Clearly sign posted

  • Gradient

    Very steep

  • Distance

    13km loop

  • Steps

    Occasional steps

  • Quality of path

    Rough track, many obstacles

  • Experience required

    Some bushwalking experience recommended

Getting there and parking

Escarpment walk is in the Chaelundi campground precinct of Guy Fawkes River National Park. The walking track starts at Chaelundi campground. To get there:

From Dorrigo:

  • Take the Tyringham Road through to the Grafton/Armidale Road
  • Turn right onto the Grafton/Armidale Road, travel 4km and turn left at Dundurrabin onto Sheepstation Creek Road (gravel road starts).
  • 6km along Sheepstation Creek Road, turn left onto Chaelundi Road.
  • Travel 17km along Chaelundi Road, then turn left onto Misty Creek Road.
  • The campground is 11km down Misty Creek Road

From Grafton:

  • Take Grafton/Armidale Road, travel 81km and turn right at Dundurrabin onto Sheepstation Creek Road (gravel road starts).
  • 6km along Sheepstation Creek Road, turn left onto Chaelundi Road.
  • Travel 17km along Chaelundi Road, then turn left onto Misty Creek Road.
  • The campground is 11km down Misty Creek Road

From Ebor:

  • Take Grafton/Armidale Road east for 15km
  • Turn left at Hernani onto Marengo Road and proceed for 11km (gravel road starts).
  • Turn right onto Hardens Road and proceed for 12km
  • Turn left onto Chaelundi Road and proceed for 7km
  • Turn left onto Misty Creek Road
  • The campground is 11km down Misty Creek Road

Parking

Parking is available at Chaelundi campground.

Best times to visit

There are lots of great things waiting for you in Guy Fawkes River National Park. Here are some of the highlights.

Autumn

Great camping weather when the days start cooling off, yet the water in the river is still warm.

Spring

Look out for native wildflowers around Ebor Falls, including everlasting daisies, native violets and small-fruited hakea.

Summer

Paddle in the creek at Chaelundi campground or swim, canoe or fish on Boyd River at Dalmorton.

Facilities

You'll need to bring your own drinking and cooking water.

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.

Permitted

Fishing

A current NSW recreational fishing licence is required when fishing in all waters.

Prohibited

Gathering firewood

Firewood may not be collected from the park

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.

Learn more

Escarpment walk is in Guy Fawkes River National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

Gold rush

Adams Hut, Guy Fawkes River National Park: Photo: S Leathers

Major Edward Parke named Guy Fawkes River after camping nearby on Guy Fawkes Day, November 5, 1845. Gold was discovered in the late 1800s at Ballards Flat and Dalmorton, with the latter once supporting a town of 3,000 people during a short gold rush. A couple of building ruins remain today and old stockmen huts and yards are still present throughout the valleys.

Routes of time

Views towards Ebor Falls, Guy Fawkes River National Park. Photo: Tony Karacsonyi

Archaeological sites suggest that Aboriginal people have occupied these valleys for over 10,000 years. The Guy Fawkes and Boyd rivers once served as important traffic and trade routes linking the tablelands to the coast. Ebor Falls was traditionally named 'Martiam', which means 'Great Falls' in Gumbaynggir language.

Unique geology

Views across the escarpment, Guy Fawkes River National Park. Photo: G James

The north-south line of the Guy Fawkes River cuts through the Demon fault line, a 240-million-year-old crack in the landscape. In the south of the park the Ebor volcano spewed lava across the landscape. This created the Ebor Falls, with their unusual organ pipe-like rock formations.

  • Ebor Falls A great stop-off between the coast and Armidale along Waterfall Way, Ebor Falls offers spectacular waterfall views, scenic lookouts and a picnic area.
  • Escarpment walk Escarpment walk in Guy Fawkes River National Park is a forest walk that takes hikers past Chaelundi Falls and Lucifers Thumb, all the way to Spring Gully picnic area.
  • Guy Fawkes 50th anniversary campfire yarns Sit around the campfire alongside an NPWS Ranger to celebrate 50 years of the beautiful Guy Fawkes River National Park.
  • Guy Fawkes 50th anniversary walk and talk Put on your walking shoes for this special 7km anniversary event to celebrate 50 years of Guy Fawkes River National Park. Learn about the rich biodiversity and history of this spectacular area.
  • Misty Creek lookout Enjoy scenic views from Misty Creek lookout over Guy Fawkes River Gorge, near Coffs Harbour, and Chaelundi campground.

Wild about species

Ebor Falls, Guy Fawkes River National Park. Photo: Jeremy Little

The park is an incredible biodiversity hotspot. There are over 40 different plant communities and about 1000 plant species in the park, along with 28 threatened plant species, 24 threatened animal species, and significant areas of old growth forest. The endangered brush-tailed rock-wallaby can be seen in the rocky areas of the park, while glossy black cockatoos are often spotted throughout the park. The park is also one of the few remaining areas in Australia where purebred dingoes can still be found. The park is a conservation site for one of the most significant areas of wilderness in northern NSW, extending over 84,000ha of the 107,000ha park. This preserves the biodiversity of the park, allowing its natural ecosystems to be kept free from excessive human impact.

  • Ebor Falls A great stop-off between the coast and Armidale along Waterfall Way, Ebor Falls offers spectacular waterfall views, scenic lookouts and a picnic area.
  • Escarpment walk Escarpment walk in Guy Fawkes River National Park is a forest walk that takes hikers past Chaelundi Falls and Lucifers Thumb, all the way to Spring Gully picnic area.
  • Guy Fawkes 50th anniversary campfire yarns Sit around the campfire alongside an NPWS Ranger to celebrate 50 years of the beautiful Guy Fawkes River National Park.
  • Guy Fawkes 50th anniversary walk and talk Put on your walking shoes for this special 7km anniversary event to celebrate 50 years of Guy Fawkes River National Park. Learn about the rich biodiversity and history of this spectacular area.
  • Misty Creek lookout Enjoy scenic views from Misty Creek lookout over Guy Fawkes River Gorge, near Coffs Harbour, and Chaelundi campground.

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