McKeowns Valley Circuit
Wiradjuri & Gundungurra Country

1 h 45 min to 2 h

3.4 km
circuit

↑ 278 m
↓ -278 m

Hard track
Looping around the northern bush tracks surrounding Jenolan Caves, this walk explores a variety of different environments, up on the ridges and down along the river. The campsite is a great spot to break and enjoy the quiet, at one of the less-frequented areas of the park. Be sure to allow time to enjoy the views from up on the ridge and especially of Carlotta's Arch. Watch out for stinging nettles down on the river. Let us begin by acknowledging the Wiradjuri & Gundungurra people, Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. 
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Cave's House. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Looking down on Cave's House from Carlotta's Arch. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
The vegetation next to the track and the Jenolan River. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Next to the Jenolan River. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Crossing the Jenolan River. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
The Cliffs near the campsite. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
McKeown's Valley Campsite. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
The servicetrail. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
McKeown's Valley Lookdown. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Downloads GPX PDF

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Safer Bushwalks
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.
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Getting There
Transport options and directions
Start (-33.8203805,150.0209901)
Mode Car (There is free parking available.)
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Track Notes
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started
From the opposite side of the Jenolan Caves Road from Caves House, this walk follows the 'Six Foot Track' sign up the concrete steps. The walk then follows the stone footpath up the side of the valley for about 80m to pass the 'Southside Show Caves' information sign then just over 30m later to the 'Grand Arch' information sign (and view of the Arch). The walk continues fairly gently up the path for 100m (as it bends right) to find 'Caves House' information sign. The path soon starts leading much more steeply up as it begins to Zig Zag up past a seat and more views down to caves house for 150m beside the limestone cliffs. At the top of this climb the path leads over a small small rise then gently down to a fenced lookout beside 'Carlotta Arch'.....
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
After 70 m find the "Jenolan Caves House" (25 m on your right).
Jenolan Caves House
Jenolan Caves House

Jenolan Caves House, built in 1898, is a heritage-listed building which houses dining, a variety of accommodation options, and other services for visitors to the caves. Jenolan has two licensed restaurants: Trails Bistro is open from breakfast onwards and closes early evening. Trails serves a range of light meals including sandwiches, salads and hot food. Chisholm's Restaurant is open each morning for breakfast and each evening for dinner from 6.00pm. Essential items and beautiful souvenirs may be purchased from Things Jenolan, located on the ground floor of Caves House. Don't forget to explore one of the many caves to explore in the area. For more information, call Jenolan Caves on 1300 76 33 11.
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Jenolan Caves House, built in 1898, is a heritage-listed building which houses dining, a variety of accommodation options, and other services for visitors to the caves. Jenolan has two licensed restaurants: Trails Bistro is open from breakfast onwards and closes early evening. Trails serves a range of light meals including sandwiches, salads and hot food. Chisholm's Restaurant is open each morning for breakfast and each evening for dinner from 6.00pm. Essential items and beautiful souvenirs may be purchased from Things Jenolan, located on the ground floor of Caves House. Don't forget to explore one of the many caves to explore in the area. For more information, call Jenolan Caves on 1300 76 33 11.

After another 30 m pass the sign (25 m on your right).
After another 35 m pass the car park (30 m on your right).
After another 20 m pass the pay phone (25 m on your right).
After another 15 m pass the toilet (20 m on your right).
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. An optional side trip to Bottom of Carlotta Arch Steps. To start this optional side trip turn right here. On returning from this side trip turn right when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 240 m continue straight.
After another 15 m veer left.
After another 30 m continue straight.
After another 55 m turn right.
After another 650 m continue straight.
After another 15 m head through/around the gate.
After another 700 m cross the ford.
Turn right.
After another 110 m cross the ford.
After another 610 m cross the ford.
After another 70 m cross the ford.
After another 70 m cross the ford.
After another 185 m turn left.
After another 30 m veer right.
The starting point of an optional sidetrip. An optional side trip to Bottom of Carlotta Arch Steps. To start this optional side trip turn left here. On returning from this side trip turn left when you get back to this intersection. Details below.
After another 15 m continue straight.
After another 410 m come to the end.

An optional side trip to Bottom of Carlotta Arch Steps.
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
After another 30 m head through the tunnel
After another 15 m come to "Carlotta Arch".
Carlotta Arch
Carlotta Arch

Carlotta Arch is a large and spectacular cave remnant overlooking Blue Lake. It is believed that the arch was named in honour of a daughter of a surveyor - General P.F. Adams. Adams is credited with having taken some of the earliest photos at Jenolan.
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Carlotta Arch is a large and spectacular cave remnant overlooking Blue Lake. It is believed that the arch was named in honour of a daughter of a surveyor - General P.F. Adams. Adams is credited with having taken some of the earliest photos at Jenolan.

Turn around and retrace your steps back the 45 m to the main route.
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Terrain
Know the Hills, grading & facilities

McKeowns Valley Circuit


Grading
Class 4/6
Hard track
Length 3.4 km
Time 1 h 45 min to 2 h
Quality of track Clear and well formed track or trail (2/6)
Gradient Very steep (4/6)
Signage Clearly signposted (1/6)
Infrastructure Generally useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats) (1/6)
Experience Required Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Weather Weather generally has little impact on safety (1/6)

Some facilities on route
Toilet: There is one 170 m from the start.


Order of key facilities on route
ItemFrom StartName & link to notes
Toilet
170 m[toilet]
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Articles
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Weather & Alerts
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