Hiking NSW

This 5km-Return Track Might Be the Most Underrated Part of NSW’s Great North Walk

If you're looking for a short, but semi-challenging, hike that's within two-hours of Sydney, this 5km return track is the one for you.

If you leave early in the morning, this steep hike down the rocks between squiggly-gum trees and over gently flowing creeks will be a little chilly, as hills will completely ruin any chance of the sun peeping through. But, the best part? The dense bush almost completely drowns out the noise from the Pacific Highway and M1 behind you, leaving you in the wilderness – just a short distance from civilisation.

jersalem-bay-over-grown-track

Wear a pair of grippy hiking boots, and if you’ve got bad ankles, make sure they’ve got some support in that region too. This hike isn’t really all that difficult, but it’s proximity to a train station (Cowan), and with a distance less than two-hours from Sydney mean that it’s the perfect option for a Sunday stroll, or early morning get-away.

walking-to-jerusalem-bay

jerusalem-bay-clear-water

After you’ve hopped, skipped and potentially slipped down the rocks, you’ll reach the flat valley floor, and soon see the clear-green bay – just visible through the trees to your right. Surely you’re working up a sweat by this point, but know that the end is nigh.

lone-palm-mark-jerusalem-bay
Ah, the Jerusalem Bay lone palm tree. Now that’s a sight for weary eyes and wobbly knees.

If you’ve got time to plan ahead, you can have gas fires here – so it’s not a bad idea to bring along a mini gas cooker in your pack, and brew up a coffee as you sit and watch the boats zoom through the quiet bay.

On the way back, the steep-ish incline might be a punish, but it’s seriously worth it for those views.

Here’s How You Can Hike to Jerusalem Bay

Start: Park your car at Cowan train station.

End: the lone palm tree at Jerusalem Bay.

How long? 5km return. Roughly 2.6km one way.

Optional: Continue walking from Jerusalem Bay for another 6km to reach Brooklyn.

For the super-keen: Why not do the whole 250km Great North Walk? Show off.

Little thanks to WildWalks.com for the deets before going there ourselves.

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