I am a amateur freelance writer from Sydney. My passion is Aboriginal history, Australia and its unusual places. My aim is to share my knowledge to better your experience. Thank you
Published April 15th 2013
Glenbrook is the first entry point to the Blue Mountains National Park, from Sydney. The National Park covers an area of over 200,000 hectares and dates back to over 100 years.
The start of this walk is in the paid car park by turning left about 200m before the toll gate at the Glenbrook entrance to the park. Please note if you do wish to enter the National Park, you will have to pay the National Parks entrance fee $7 per vehicle, as there is parking available further down aside from the paystation car park at top; the second car park is at the start of the steel staircase ladder and from here you can also view Jellybean Pool without doing the walk.
Jellybean Pool, one of the most popular swimming sites, is was supposedly named after a little girl who said to her father "Look Dad, it's like a big jelly bean".
If you like bushwalking and want to get a dose of fresh air, here is a quaint track that leads you to a lovely natural swimming hole not far from Glenbrook and is becoming quite the weekend trek for many. Even if you are not a swimmer, it is a very picturesque area and you can wander around on various walking tracks, that are as short or as long as you want to make them.
We bought our own lunch and ate on the rocks, and the beautiful sandbank that is all natural. The water is cold or refreshing depending on the person. It is a divine area close to Sydney, providing an all year round walk, and yes, some even swim here in the winter months.
People even lilo their way down the river as well. There are miles of rocks to climb over and explore, abseilers will always find a area here. Water holes scattered along the river way. There is a gigantic rock that people jump off, but please be aware water levels and debris change daily, so always check before jumping.
This walk takes you into the Glenbrook Gorge, passing mountain spotted gums and grass trees and our wonderful wildflowers in the right season.
Keep your eye out for kestrels and other birds of prey, as they glide through the air looking for food. Watch for brilliantly coloured rainbow lorikeets or the cheeky Gang-gang Cockatoo with its distinctive call, like a rusty hinge. You may be luck to see a goanna or snake basking on the paths.
If you do witness such wildlife, please do not approach them as they are wild animals and need to be left alone, and definitely no feeding any animals. We are in a National Park, so their rules must be taken seriously. If you come by an animal on a path make some noise by banging a branch on a tree or rock - they feel the vibrations and move off or talk loudly so the animal knows you are approaching and gets a chance to move to a safer location, or find an alternative route around them. This is their home and we are just visitors.
The track is well defined and has log steps with a a fairly steep steel staircase put in place for the harder sections of this walk; which, hats off to NPWS, they maintain constantly. Make sure you stop and witness the beauty of the Australian landscape and the forever changing Sandstone Cliffs that intertwine throughout the track - some you have to duck under.
They say the walk is only 0.2km in length and takes approx 20 minutes to descend, the ascend is slightly longer depending on your fitness levels. It took us 3 adults, 1 child, 30 minutes down, 45 up. The climb itself down the steel staircase is approx 20m high and sturdy walking shoes are advised. This is where you need to be vigilant with small children as they could injure themselves on this section if not careful. We normally go with 2 plus adults and put an adult in front and one at the rear to avoid injuries. Remember when walking on tracks like this, to stop and view the beauty of our country, so don't rush, enjoy and take your time and take the surroundings in.
Children of all ages are able to do this walk, but parental supervision is essential for safety reasons. Not advisable for people with walking restrictions. The area can be particularly dangerous after rain, including the swimming hole check with the rangers before venturing down.
Glenbrook via Ross Street and then Bruce Road through to the National Park – you can walk from the station but it is advisable to drive if not an avid bushwalker. It will probably take you about a good hour to do so. Remember you still have to walk out, so make sure you think of all options before starting such a journey.
Suitable for families, photographers, sketchers/artist, bushwalkers, abseilers/rock climbers.
Please be aware that what you bring in, we ask that you bring out -some people leave their rubbish and if you do see rubbish left behind and are able to take it with you, that would be great. This is prime bushland and needs to remain this way, this is how areas get shut off to the public. Do not take rocks/plants as souvenirs and please respect/obey the signs in place and no graffiti, as some have done on the rocks. Remember we are in our National Parks, we own it, NPWS manage it for our future generations to enjoy.
The mountains are known to get cold, so please bring warm clothes and keep an eye on the weather, don't leave it till the last minute to exit the area if rain is approaching.
Essentials: Sturdy walking shoes, warm clothes, swimmers, picnic rug, food and plenty of drink, camera.
Thanks a lot for this review. We read it then went this past weekend. I wanted to make a couple of points
1) If you park in the Jellybean carpark, it takes 3 minutes to descend the stairs to the pool. If you park at the tourist information/toilets area (beside the payment booth for NPWS) and walk from there, that would probably take you 20 mins. We did the former and were expecting a 20 minute walk. Not sure if we were relieved or disappointed once we made it to the pool in only 3 minutes!
2) Wear shoes with good soles. My 3 year old had thongs on and he slipped over on the sandy rocks a few times. Once he took his shoes off he was fine. I wore running shoes and was fine. It's the sand on the rocks that make it slippery.
Thanks again for the review. We'll definitely go back and explore the area more.