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Best Short Walks in the Warrumbungles

Whitegum Lookout

Grade: 1 – easy
Distance: 1km return
Time: 30 mins
Type: Out and back on sealed path suitable for sturdy wheelchairs and prams
Location: The track head starts from Whitegum Picnic Area.

This is the first walk you encounter entering the Park. It is a 24min 26.4km drive from Coonabarabran. After observing the turnoff to Siding Spring Observatory on your right at the 23km mark continue a further 3.4kms before turning left once you see the signs to Whitegum Lookout. Alternatively, it’s a 10km 15min drive from Camp Blackman. I suggest you do this walk at either the beginning or end of your stay.

I’m glad I didn’t miss this quick walk. Each side of the path displayed the best selection of wildflowers endemic to this area that I had observed the entire week, capped off with some divine white gums at the viewing platform. It was wonderful to stop here at the end of our journey to see the peaks of Bluff Mountain, Belougery Split Rock and Mt Exmouth that we had summitted earlier.

Fan’s Horizon

Grade: 3 – Moderate to Steep
Distance: 3.6km return
Time: 1 to 1 ½hrs
Type: Out and Back
Location: Trailhead begins from Pincham Carpark

This is a good walk to do on your approach to the park as it won’t take too long. Alternatively, you could combine it with another short walk, such as Gould’s Circuit, before tackling the more challenging lengthier distance walks such as Grand High Tops Circuit or Mt Exmouth, fresh and early the next day.

A short, but steep evenly stepped path with 1,000 steps. I didn’t feel the need to count them. The gradient was gradual and manageable save for the pond hopping which only made it more fun. The path is well constructed making it very accessible to most able-bodied walkers.

If you are fit, you’ll find this walk relatively easy, despite the steep ascent. Pay attention to the danger cliff warning sign though, particularly with kids. There is a sheer dropoff from the cliff ‘s edge.

Fan’s Horizon is named after Fanny Gould (nee Breckenridge), the wife of Gordon Alick Gould, a long-time Secretary of the Park Trust and Coonabarabran Shire Clerk during the late 50s and early 60s. We see Belougery Spire, the Breadknife and Crater Bluff to our south. There’s no disputing it’s a lovely viewpoint, but you can do better. See it as a teasing tempter for more spectacular vantage points within the park.

The path continues for another couple of hundred metres to Bluff View lookout for disappointing and restrictive views of Bluff Mountain and part of Mount Exmouth to the right. Do it because you can or just savour Fan’s Horizon Lookout and return back the way you came to Pincham Carpark.

Goulds Circuit

Goulds Circuit is a detour off Pincham Trail.

Grade: 3 – moderate to steep
Distance: 6.3km
Time: 2 ½ to 3hrs
Type: Circuit off Pincham Trail
Location: Starts at Pincham Carpark on Grand High Tops Pincham Trail route

You get a lot of bang for your buck here. At only 729 mtrs elevation I found the upper views of the expansive Warrumbungle ranges more captivating here, compared to the park’s highest point of 1206 mtrs at Mt Exmouth. The first viewpoint, Febar Tor, is most pleasing but Macha Tor’s view was more expansive. The option of a short, steep rock scramble all the more fun.

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