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West Head army track

Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park

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Follow in the footsteps of World War II soldiers as you climb down the challenging West Head army track to a historic army battery. From here, Sydney’s Broken Bay was protected from possible invasion.

0.45km one-way
Time suggested
1hr - 1hr 30min
Grade 4
Trip Intention Form

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Entry fees

Park entry fees apply.

Guided group tours of West Head army battery are available on request. Phone Kalkari Discovery Centre on (02) 9472 9300.
Please note
When using ladder ensure 3 points of contact and face the ladder when climbing.

This track winds down West Head's eastern face in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Some parts are so steep you’ll be scaling ladders.

Much of the original wartime track work still exists, uncovered by NPWS and West Head Awareness Team volunteers during track upgrades. But the real reward for history buffs is the destination. Perched above the shoreline, the army battery once hosted two 4.7-inch ex-naval guns supported on 800kg pedestals, an observation post, ammunition storage and 2 searchlights.

Today, the silent structures are a fascinating reminder of the days when heavy equipment was transported down the track via a purpose-built railway. Take a moment to wonder at the strength of the soldiers who built the steps and carried materials down to the site.

Head back the same way to West Head lookout, through casuarina forest that’s a favourite of glossy black cockatoos.

To find out more about the history of West Head Battery visit 4HResearch.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info


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A family walk a boardwalk section of Bouddi coastal walk, Bouddi National Park. Photo: John Spencer/OEH.

General enquiries

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Park info

  • in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park in the Sydney and surrounds region
  • Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is open sunrise to sunset but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.

    • The entrance to Bobbin Head and Appletree Bay is closed from 8pm to 6am during daylight savings periods, and from 5.30pm to 6am the rest of the year.
    • Gates to West Head are closed from 8.30pm to 6am during daylight savings periods, and from 6pm to 6am the rest of the year.
  • Park entry fees:

    $12 per vehicle per day. You can also pay for your visit via the Park’nPay app.

    Vehicles over 8 seats: $4.40 per adult, $2.20 per child (per day). Students on educational programs: $1.10 per student. Teachers/educational supervisors: free (1 adult per 10 students).

    Other fees:

    A $3 per adult, $2 per child landing fee may apply for day visitors to The Basin campground. Please pay at the campground wharf. Landing fees are included in your camping fees.

    Group bookings:

    Under the Plan of Management for this park, prior written approval is required for organised groups of 40 or more people planning to visit this park. Contact the park office before your visit.

    Buy annual pass
See more visitor info