Mount Exmouth walking track

Warrumbungle National Park

Overview

Mount Exmouth walking track in Warrumbungle National Park is a long but rewarding hike that culminates in stunning 360-degree views from the summit of Mount Exmouth.

Where
Warrumbungle National Park
Distance
17km return
Time suggested
5 - 7hrs
Grade
Grade 4
Price
Free
Entry fees
Park entry fees apply
Please note

  • It’s a good idea to put sunscreen on before you set out and remember to take a hat and drinking water.
  • If you’re bushwalking in this park, it’s a good idea to bring a topographic map and compass, or a GPS.
  • There is limited mobile reception in this park.
  • Remember to take your binoculars if you want to go birdwatching.

This long trek is also an extremely rewarding one: the 360-degree views from Mount Exmouth, the 1206m peak of Warrumbungle Range, are truly outstanding. Along the way to the summit, you’ll encounter beautiful scenery, a varied vegetation community, and basalt rock formations that comprise some of the few remaining pieces of the original volcanic shield. Following Mount Exmouth walking track is to walk back in time, experiencing the best that Warrumbungle National Park has to offer.

You won’t be alone, either. Kangaroos, wallabies and wallaroos are common sights along the track. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a rare koala in the trees along ‘The Boulevarde’, a stretch of scenic woodland between Camp Burbie and Danu Gap. Don’t forget your binoculars, too – turquoise parrots can be seen in small flocks around the same area.

The vegetation on the summit is sparse, and only the hardiest of plants like the mallee eucalyptus can survive here. But in spring, the wildflowers are out down below, including pink hyacinth orchids and nodding greenhood. Pack a picnic lunch and settle down to enjoy the ambience of the day.

Take a virtual tour of Mount Exmouth walking track 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/walking-tracks/mount-exmouth-walking-track/local-alerts

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Mount Exmouth walking track .

Track grading

Grade 4

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

    5 - 7hrs

  • Quality of markings

    Limited signage

  • Gradient

    Short steep hills

  • Distance

    17km return

  • Steps

    Occasional steps

  • Quality of path

    Rough track, many obstacles

  • Experience required

    Some bushwalking experience recommended

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    Mount Exmouth walking track is in Warrumbungle National Park. To get there:

    From Coonabarabran:

    • Follow the signs to Warrumbungle National Park from Newell Highway
    • Follow John Renshaw Parkway for approximately 33km into the centre of the park
    • Turn left off John Renshaw Parkway to Split Rock carpark

    From Tooraweenah:

    • Follow the signs east to Warrumbungle National Park, following John Renshaw Parkway.
    • On entering the park, continue along John Renshaw Parkway for approximately 5km.
    • Turn right off John Renshaw Parkway to Split Rock carpark

    Park entry points

    Parking

    Parking is available at Split Rock carpark.

    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

    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

    Rock climbing is permitted throughout the park (except Breadknife), and you'll need to register at the visitor centre before you head out.

    Prohibited

    Gathering firewood

    Firewood is not supplied and 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.

    Visitor centre

    Nearby towns

    Coonabarabran (40 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 (55 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

    Mount Exmouth walking track 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)

    Mount Exmouth walking track, Warrumbungle National Park. Photo: Sue Brookhouse