National Pass shut, other walking tracks options for holidays

Stunning: The jewel that is Blackheath's Grand Canyon. Picture R Garthwin.
Stunning: The jewel that is Blackheath's Grand Canyon. Picture R Garthwin.

The iconic National Pass may be closed, but there are still plenty of tracks open in the Mountains these holidays for keen bushwalkers, such as the Grand Canyon in Blackheath, Grose Valley Tracks and the Dardanelles Loop.

A National Parks spokeswoman said “presently National Pass loop, (including part of Valley of Waters) is likely to remain closed. Access to Empress Canyon and the crossing on Jamison River below the Grand Stairway is open. The Wentworth Pass is fully closed.”

National Parks has recommended the Dardenelles Pass loop walking track as an alternative option which begins from Echo Point lookout. Follow the signs to the iconic Three Sisters, before descending the Giant Stairway.

Grose Valley Tracks are also still a popular holiday walk. The Upper Grose Valley is where most of the major bushwalking tracks are. There are a number of access points to the rim of the valley at Blackheath. The three main ones are: Evans Lookout, at the end of Evans Lookout Rd; Govetts Leap, at the end of Govetts Leap Rd; and Perrys Lookdown, at the end of Hat Hill Rd.

The National Pass closed late last month after the death of Mountains Parks worker David Gliddon in a landslide.

National Parks has advised anyone venturing to the Blue Mountains should check the website for latest closure info: www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au