Starting from the Long Gully Carpark just off Long Gully Road, Yadboro, this walk leads to the summit of The Castle and back via the Castle Walking Track. This challenging walk provides spectacular views of the surrounding cliffs and plateaus in the Budawang Ranges. Starting in the rainforest, the hike ascends into dryer forest, then skirts the western edge of the Castle's lower walls with views of Mount Nibelung and Mount Owen. Heading up along cliffs, the hike climbs high above ancient forest before arriving at the large plateau of the Castle. Make sure you walk to the southern end for the best views of Byangee Walls. While the total distance is not significant, the climb of nearly 800m is capped by a series of exposed scrambles near the summit. Tracks, in general, are not signposted, and except for a few arrows that are scratched into rocks, navigation may be challenging. The trail is technical and diverse across varied terrain, with challenging rock scrambles and several rope sections toward the summit that aren't for the faint-hearted or inexperienced. Let us begin by acknowledging the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present.
Warning This journey requires significant bushwalking experience, specialised equipment and navigation skills. Please ensure you and your group well prepared and equiped for this journey.
Tips on staying safe on track
Before you start any bushwalk ensure you;
• Tell someone you trust where you are going and what to do if you are overdue
• Have adequate equipment, supplies, skills & knowledge for the whole journey
• Consider the impact of weather forecasts, park/track closures & fire dangers
• Can respond to emergencies & call for help at any point
• Are healthy and fit enough for this journey
If not, change plans and stay safe. It is okay to delay and ask people for help.
Turn on to Monkey Mountain Road then drive for 5.4 km
Turn sharp left onto Brooman Road and drive for another 3.7 km
Keep right onto Flat Rock Road and drive for another 5.7 km
Turn right onto Clyde Ridge Road and drive for another 215 m
Turn left onto Cpt 38/1 Road and drive for another 670 m
Turn slight left onto Yadboro Road and drive for another 16.2 km
Keep right onto Long Gully Road and drive for another 1.4 km
Turn right and drive for another 100 m
Turn slight left and drive for another 110 m
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started From the Long Gully Carpark just off Long Gully Road, Yadboro, follow the track that leaves from the far end of the carpark, following the Yadboro River for 250m to a shallow pool. Cross the river carefully, and follow the Castle Walking Track ahead to continue the hike to The Castle.....
Directions & comments
There is a toilet (about 70 m back from the start).
After 480 m cross the ford.
After another 95 m cross the ford.
After another 3.7 km pass the "Camp Cave" (on your right).
After another 20 m cross the ford.
After another 25 m continue straight, to head along Castle Walking Track.
After another 20 m come to the viewpoint (15 m on your left).
After another 470 m (at the intersection of Castle Walking Track & Castle to Monolith Valley) turn left, to head along Castle to Monolith Valley.
After another 280 m (Castle Saddle) turn right, to head along Cooyoyo Walking Track.
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. Optional side trip to a viewpoint on top of a cliff, providiving you views over Cooyoyo Creek. Also visits the Cooyoyo Campsite midway. To start this optional side trip turn around here. On returning from this side trip turn left when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 20 m turn right.
After another 240 m veer left, to head along Castle Walking Track.
After another 110 m pass the shelter (15 m on your right).
After another 185 m come to the viewpoint.
After another 430 m come to the "The Castle".
Continue another 380 m to find the end. Then turn around here and retrace the main route for 6.5 km to get back to the start.
Optional side trip to a viewpoint on top of a cliff, providiving you views over Cooyoyo Creek. Also visits the Cooyoyo Campsite midway.
Directions & comments
Start heading along Cooyoyo Walking Track.
After another 40 m continue straight, to head along Cooyoyo Walking Track.
After another 470 m pass the toilet (7 m on your left).
After another 10 m come to the "Cooyoyo campsite".
Continue another 35 m to find Clifftop view at the end.
Turn around and retrace your steps back the 560 m to the main route.
Know the Hills, grading & facilities
Very Hard off track
5 h 30 min, 8 h to 2 days
Quality of track
Rough unclear track (5/6)
Very steep exposed rock scrambling and climbing (6/6)
Minimal directional signs (4/6)
Limited facilities (such as cliffs not fenced, significant creeks not bridged) (4/6)
High level of bushwalking experience recommended (5/6)
Forecasted & unexpected severe weather likely to have an impact on your navigation and safety (5/6)
Some facilities on route
Camp site: There is one 5.1 km (plus an extra 520 m along side route) from the start.
Shelter: There is one 5.5 km from the start.
Toilet: There are 2 on route, on average they are 4.7 km apart with the largest gap of 8.3 km.