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Historic Nightcap walking track

Whian Whian State Conservation Area

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Learn more about why this park is special

Historic Nightcap walking track is in Whian Whian State Conservation Area. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

4,000 years of Aboriginal culture

 A still creek, Whian Whian State Conservation Area. Photo: OEH

The conservation area is located within the traditional lands of the Widjabal clan of the Bundjalung Nation. Evidence from recorded sites suggests Aboriginal use of the Nightcap Range for at least the last 4,000 years. The area has intrinsic cultural values to the Widjabal People and the land has significant connections with other recorded sites in the adjacent Nightcap National Park.

Historic heritage of timber-getters

Rummery Creek, Whian Whian State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

Lured by the opportunity of employment in difficult times, timber-getters began logging in the Whian Whian area in the 1830s for red cedar, a particularly sought after timber. In 1871, surveyors identified a track over Nightcap Range to link Lismore with Murwillumbah. This allowed cedar-getters access to previously isolated expanses of forest. The Rummery Park campground was originally a forestry camp, and its use dates back to the 1930s. The inter-war period was the most active period for forestry use of the campground. Peates Mountain Road (now part of the Nightcap track) was built during the depression of the 1920s and 1930s. Sleeper-cutters who claimed timber unsuitable for milling, camped nearby on the other side of Boggy Creek at Rummery Park.

  • Historic Nightcap walking track Historic Nightcap walking track leads through World Heritage-listed rainforest, offering scenic views across Nightcap National Park and Whian Whian State Conservation Area, near Byron Bay.

Plant life galore

Waterfall, Whian Whian National Park. Photo: John Spencer

An astounding 520 plant species have been recorded here – making it an incredibly diverse place when it comes to vegetation. There are 10 broad ecosystems, including subtropical and warm temperate rainforests and various types of wet sclerophyll forest.

  • Boggy Creek walk Boggy Creek walk in Whian Whian State Conservation Area takes you through blackbutt forest and along the beautiful Boggy Creek to Minyon Falls. You can swim in the inviting pools along the creek.
  • Historic Nightcap walking track Historic Nightcap walking track leads through World Heritage-listed rainforest, offering scenic views across Nightcap National Park and Whian Whian State Conservation Area, near Byron Bay.

Walk with the animals

 Stag horn (Platycerium bifurcatum), Whian Whian State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

There’s also an incredible variety of native animal species thriving in these rainforests – over 270 native species, around 50 of which are listed as threatened, including the spotted tailed quoll. Koalas and Albert’s lyrebird, with its distinctive calls and mimicking echoes, can often be heard through the forest in the cooler months.

World heritage worthy

Prospector Falls walking track, Whian Whian State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

The conservation area has similar vegetation and natural heritage values as those found in the adjoining Nightcap National Park, one of the 50 reserves in northeast NSW and southeast Queensland that make up World Heritage Central Eastern Rainforest Reserves Australia.

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Rummery Park Camping Area, Whian Whian State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer/NSW Government