South East Forests National Park

View from Pipers Lookout Walking Track

Piper’s Lookout Walking Track.

South East Forests National Park features extensive areas of tall forests, numerous streams with waterfalls and waterholes, upland swamps, escarpments, gorges, high peaks and panoramic views. It covers an area of 115,534 ha and spans over 100km of spectacular coastal escarpment, tableland edge and hinterland country. It forms an important link in a system of conservation reserves stretching over 600 km along the great eastern escarpment of southern NSW and eastern Victoria.

The park encompasses the former Genoa, Tantawangalo, Coolangubra, Bemboka and Yowaka National Parks and was declared in 2001 after many years of disputes between conservationists and the timber industry.

The park protects valuable native habitats including those supporting rare and endangered animals such as the long-footed potoroo, southern brown bandicoot, smoky mouse, yellow-bellied glider, tiger quoll and the powerful, masked and sooty owls. It also contains old growth forest and protects water catchments for coastal towns.

The park provides an alternative to frequently crowded coastal destinations and a sense of adventure and relative solitude. It provides opportunities for walking, picnicking and camping in forest settings ranging from wilderness to quality facility areas. The many roads and vehicle trails in the park also provide opportunities for driving and cycling.
It also contains significant native grasslands and a historic building, Alexander’s Hut, which provides an insight into the lives of early settlers of the Monaro.

Recreationpic_seforests4

Goodenia Rainforest: Located a few kilometres west of Pambula, this remarkable cool temperate rainforest has a picnic area and a walk that takes you under the lush canopy. The walk takes around 40 minutes. More information on the walk and picnic area.

Pipers Lookout: Located on Brown Mountain, Pipers Lookout offers great views of the Bega Valley and Bemboka escarpment via several platforms and a 500m boardwalk. More info here.

Myanba Gorge:  Located south east of Bombala, Myanba Gorge has a wheelchair accessible boardwalk, picnic area and great views of old growth eucalypt, rocky gorges and Towamba Valley. More info here.

Pheasants Peak Walking Track: Just south of Eden A challenging 4km return walk with granite boulders, white ash forest and views to the Snowy Mountains. More info here.

Nunnock Swamp:  There are 15 kilometres of interconnecting walks here, connected by 2 camp grounds and taking you along the edge of the escarpment, through grassland, woodland, swamp and stock tracks. More info here.

Wallima: This remote part of South East Forests National Park is located south of Eden. It is characterised by impressive Devonian geology with sheer cliffs, large waterholes and sandy beaches, is beloved by experienced, self-reliant bushwalkers. More information here.

Myrtle Mountain Road, sealed road, bitumenLocation and Access

The park is accessible from the towns of Bega, Merimbula, Eden and Bombala.

Camping

There are two main campsites, Waratah Gully and Six Mile Creek.

Car-based camping is available at Six Mile Creek and Postmans Track. Caravan based camping is available at Nunnock Swamp and Waratah Gully. Accommodation is also available at Alexanders Hut.

Scenic drives, short and longer walks, wildlife watching, bird watching, wilderness walking, lookouts and bush camping.

The park is accessible from the towns of Bega, Merimbula, Eden and Bombala.

Six Mile Creek is 12 km west of Candelo on the Tantawangalo Mountain Road (unsealed). Access to Myanba Gorge is via Coolangubra Forest Way and Kanoonah Road (both unsealed) or along the Bucky Springs Road south-east from Bombala. Pipers Lookout is 60km west of Bega along the Snowy Mountains Highway.

Please note: When driving through the forests, please remember that forest roads may also be being used by logging trucks. Please drive carefully.

Significance

pic_seforests3The establishment of the South East Forest National Park is one of the outstanding conservation decisions of the 90s. The protection of some of the most important areas of forest in Australia and the achievement of a conservation corridor 150 kms long. It also serves as a key visitor destination essential to the State’s tourism industry.

The importance of the latest addition to the State’s conservation reserve system lies primarily in the fact that it will protect some of the last remaining patches of old growth forest left in NSW. The area also supports a diverse range of species currently listed as “threatened” of “vulnerable”.

The park will link with the long established 81,000 ha Wadbilliga National Park to the north providing a continuous protected area from the coastal escarpment just west of Narooma to the Victorian border. This will link conveniently with the Coopracambra – Kay National Park just over the Victorian border.

The South East Forests National Park will also provide valuable catchment protection for the coastal townships.

Click here for more detailed information on South East Forests National Park.