Heritage walking track
Blue Gum Hills Regional Park
Join the Heritage walking track for a glimpse into the park’s mining history. This short walk follows the old rail embankment to a ventilation shaft from the 1870s.
- Blue Gum Hills Regional Park
- 3km loop
- Time suggested
- 30min - 1hr
- Grade 4
- What to
- Hat, sunscreen, drinking water
- Please note
Walkers, cyclists and horse riders should remain on recognised tracks and trails as there are areas in the park that are subject to mine subsidence.
The Heritage walking track begins at the remains of an 1870's stone bridge abutments. This short walk takes you along the original Minmi Back Creek rail embankment to Brown’s Colliery No. 2 mine, ending at the large brick tower of an original ventilation shaft from the old mine. The return walk to the carpark along Blue Gum Road passes by the dam constructed to wash coal before transportation.
As you wind through dry eucalypt forest you may see goannas basking in patches of sunlight, hear the hum of cicadas and glimpse birds flitting through the trees. Look out for the grey goshawk, you'll be able to tell it from its powerful yellow legs and talons. This walk offers a wonderful blend of history and nature; everchanging as the bush reclaims the landscape.
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/heritage-walking-track/local-alerts
- National Parks Contact Centre
- 7am to 7pm daily
- 1300 072 757 (13000 PARKS) for the cost of a local call within Australia excluding mobiles
- in Blue Gum Hills Regional Park in the North Coast region
Blue Gum Hills Regional Park is open 7.30am to 8pm during daylight savings (7.30am to 5pm at other times), but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.
All the practical information you need to know about Heritage walking track.
Grade 4Learn more about the grading system Features of this track
30min - 1hr
Quality of markings
Quality of path
No experience required
Getting there and parking
Get driving directions
The Heritage walking track starts from the gate at the end of the main carpark in Blue Gum Hills Regional Park. Veer right at the oversized tyre and then take the well-graded dirt footpath to the left, just after you pass the large dam.
Park entry points
- Blue Gum Hills parking See on map
Parking is available at the start of the Heritage walking track, about 500m from the main park entry gate.
Best times to visit
There are lots of great things waiting fopr you in Blue Gum Hills National Park. Here are some highlights.
A great time for cycling and walking as it cools down after the summer months.
The weather is beautiful and fresh; perfect for a spot of walking or cycling.
The picnic and barbecue areas offer lots of shade so it's a good time to visit to escape the heat.
Weather, temperature and rainfall
20°C and 28°C
10°C and 18°C
Maps and downloads
You can walk your dog at this location. See other regional parks in NSW that have dog walking areas.
Dog walking is permitted in this park away from picnic areas and children's play areas. You will need to keep them on a leash at all times and remember to pick up after them.
NSW national parks are no smoking areas.
Cessnock (26 km)
Some of the finest wines in the world are created in the Hunter Valley and its towns, gourmet food is acclaimed and luxury, boutique accommodations are matched by the most beautiful natural scenery.
Newcastle (6 km)
Newcastle is a harbour city surrounded by amazing surf beaches that are linked by a great coastal walk, the Bathers Way. The walk from Nobbys Beach to Merewether Beach takes about three hours and is a great way to explore the city.
Warners Bay (2 km)
Warners Bay offers a great lifestyle with a vibrant cultural precinct. It's a pretty lakeside suburb.
Heritage walking track is in Blue Gum Hills Regional Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:
Learn about the area's mining history
From the middle of the 19th century right up to the 1980's, much of the area of Blue Gum Hills Regional Park was used for mining, mostly Newcastle's famous black coal. You will see evidence of the park's mining history in its unusual topography, undulations and scars are still a feature of the landscape. There is so much to discover about the park's mining history, start by walking the easy Heritage Track which features an historic 1870's chimney, one of the few in good condition in NSW. This park is a fascinating work-in-progress, undergoing rejuvenation and transformation into the beautiful bushland setting much of the park already enjoys.
- Heritage walking track Join the Heritage walking track for a glimpse into the park’s mining history. This short walk follows the old rail embankment to a ventilation shaft from the 1870s.
- Minmi Cemetery walk Take this gentle walk to Minmi Cemetery, a charming historic site that dates back to the coal-mining boom of the mid-1800s.
Stacks to do
The local community has already discovered just how much there is to do at Blue Gum Hills Regional Park, and everyone’s welcome. You can make the most of the wide open spaces, pretty bushland setting and picnic and barbecue facilities, to spend the day bushwalking, cycling, orienteering, picnicking, horse-riding, playing ball games or simply reconnecting with the bush.
- TreeTops Newcastle Challenge yourself on a high ropes course in the forest canopy at TreeTops Newcastle. Adults and kids can choose from over 100 elevated obstacles including rope ladders, wobbly bridges and zip lines.
- Village Green picnic area With picnic table, barbecues, mountain biking trails, an adventure playground and bushland setting, Village Green picnic area is ideal for families and large groups.
The kids will love it too
For the kids there’s a maze, a cool mine-themed playground, easy bush tracks for biking and burning off energy and the flying foxes and rope challenges of the TreeTop Adventure Park. And while they’re getting back to nature, see if they can spot the yellow tailed black cockatoo, with its huge, bulbous bill and bright yellow ear feathers and tail panel, and the masked owl, 50cm long, with a flat, heart-shaped face encircled by a dark border.
Plants and animals you may see
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.
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.