In search of a short walk in the Glenrock State Conservation Area while my son is off mountain biking with his friends, I settle on the Leggy Point Loop bushwalk. It’s fairly short, and promises some nice views…
The start of the Leggy Point Loop walk is not signposted, and with many unofficial as well as official bushwalking and mountain-biking tracks that criss-cross the bush reserve, having a detailed map is helpful. Once I work out that I’m on the right firetrail (which is called The Goat Trail), I set-off from Scout Camp Road through light eucalypt forest.
It’s only 400m to a lookout which is marked on my map…. and it’s rather underwhelming. A glimpse of the ocean, though a gap in the forest. I only take a photo so I can share with you the underwhelming-ness of this vantage point!
Continuing along the Leggy Point Loop firetrail, I don’t have particularly high expectations of the rest of this walk, since the lookout I’ve just passed is the only one shown on my map. The Goat Trail firetrail soon re-enters eucalypt forest soon after the “lookout”.
There’s an obvious but un-signposted track a couple of hundred metres after the “lookout” that veers off to the right, so I decide to see where this goes. After descending through forest towards the southern end of Glenrock/Burwood Beach, it reaches another junction, where I turn right onto a track that soon emerges into low scrub.
Heading directly towards the coastline, the track ends at informal lookout directly above the ocean. To the north is Glenrock/Burwood Beach, and beyond that in the distance are the steep cliffs of Shepherds Hill.
Rather than returning the same way, I follow a rough track through low and stunted trees. It’s not a mountain-biking track, as the branches would soon knock you off your bike, but it’s fairly distinct. It just requires a lot of ducking under low branches… After a couple of hundred metres, the track emerges again above the cliffs of Little Redhead Point.
The track now follows the edge of cliff fairly closely, delivering outstanding views both up and own the coast.
There’s more great views looking back up the coast towards Newcastle.
As the track swings around Little Redhead Point, you start seeing more of the coastline to the south. A rock outrcrop which juts out from the cliff provides a great spot for coastal photography.
From the rock outcrop you can see almost the entire length of the deserted Dudley Beach to the south.
The track heads inland again from here, taking me back to the walking track I took off The Goat Trail. I’m soon back on the main firetrail, and continuing along the official Leggy Point Loop route. There are some more views of Glenrock/Burwood Beach, although not as spectacular as from Little Redhead Point.
It’s not marked on any of my maps, but I discover that Leggy Point is a broad shelf of rock that overlooks Glenrock Lagoon and Glenrock/Burwood beach. And there is a nice view from here, especially with the late afternoon light.
Just after Leggy Point, the track reaches another junction. The official Leggy Point Loop route (The Goat Trail) continues straight ahead, while another track heads up the hill. As I’ve no great desire to walk along a road (the Leggy Point Loop finishes about 500m down Scout Camp Road from the starting point) I take the alternate trail back up to the road.
There’s a last glimpse of the ocean as the track climbs up through eucalypt forest, before reaching Scout Camp Road. The last trail is not shown on any of my maps, but it’s a good trail that avoid having to walk along the road.
While not a long bushwalk, the Leggy Point Loop combined with what I’ll call the Little Redhead Point Loop provides some stunning coastal loops. I’d highly recommend the additional, unofficial loop – unless you are bushwalking with children (as there are sections along the cliff-top where there is a sheer drop to the ocean below).
Getting to Leggy Point Loop
The start and finish points of the official Leggy Point Loop are about 500m part on Scout Camp Road, in the Glenrock State Conservation Area. I’d recommend avoiding the road section by taking an informal or unofficial track up the hill from Leggy Point, which finishes right next to the starting point. Scout Camp Road is off Burwood Road in Whitebridge, about 15min from Newcastle or two hours north of Sydney.
- National Parks (NPWS) – Leggy Point loop walking track