Epping to Thornleigh Station
Darug Country

2 h 30 min to 3 h

7.9 km
oneway

↑ 171 m
↓ -94 m

Hard track
This walk, between Epping and Thornleigh Stations, follows Devlins Creek then Lane Cove River as they wind through the valley. There are a number of interesting rock features to enjoy along the walk. The walk starts and ends near shops, so you can fill up with a coffee or a bite to eat at each end. From Whale Rock, the track becomes wide and very easy to follow. Let us begin by acknowledging the Darug people, Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. 
Show all
Tunnel under the M2. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Track along fence near M2. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Bushtrack away from M2. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Lane Cove National Park sign. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Bush track through heath. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Signposted intersection for Whale Rock. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Service trail to Whale Rock. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Track towards Cheltenham and Pennant Hills Tracks. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Weeds covering bush next to track. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Exotic species next to track. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Track through hanging vines. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Track viewing Devlin's Creek. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Signpost near Whale Rock. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Track below rock outcrop. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Creek crossing. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2007.
Passing the Pennant Hills turn off. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Crossing the Lane Cove River. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Great north walk in Northern end of Lane Cove Valley. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Following the Great North Walk. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Thornleigh Station sign. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Winding up to Thornleigh Oval. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
On the Great North walk Near Baden Powell Scout camp. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Thornleigh oval. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2008.
Streets of Thornliegh. | 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 At the intersection of Langston Place & Cambridge Street (-33.7724644,151.0824454)
Mode Bus Car (There is free parking available.) Train
DirectionsFrom Silverwater Road, A6
  • Turn on to Marsden Road, A6 then drive for 305 m
  • Keep right onto Lawson Street and drive for another 280 m
  • Turn right onto Brush Road and drive for another 295 m
  • Turn left onto Rutledge Street and drive for another 1.7 km
  • Turn slight left onto Blaxland Road and drive for another 2 km
  • Continue onto Langston Place and drive for another 165 m
Finish (-33.7320179,151.0784513)
Mode (end) Car Shuttle   Bus   Car   (There is free parking available.) Train  
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Track Notes
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started
The walk exits Epping Station on the Oxford St side. The walk then crosses Cambridge St and continues down Oxford St. The walk follows the footpath past the shops down Oxford St passing Chester St, Surrey St. Just after Surry St the walk turns left onto Derby St to the end. Nearing the end of Derby St the walk tends left around the yellow gate and onto the concrete driveway which veers left off the road. The walk continues towards the tunnel to come to an intersection just before the tunnel entrance.....
Turn map Directions & comments
At the intersection of Langston Place & Cambridge Street Start heading along Oxford Street (a highway|tertiary).
There is a cafe (about 30 m back from the start).
After 235 m pass the shelter (9 m on your left).
After another 165 m continue straight.
After another 200 m continue straight.
After another 15 m turn left.
After another 275 m continue straight.
After another 60 m veer right.
Then head down the concrete steps (about 6 m long)
Then head down the concrete steps (about 4 m long)
After another 20 m head through the tunnel (about 50 m long)
After another 280 m head down the steps (about 30 m long)
After another 480 m veer left.
After another 25 m pass the sign (10 m on your left).
After another 560 m continue straight, to head along Devlins Creek Trail.
After another 80 m pass the sign (10 m on your left).
After another 170 m find the "Big Ducky Waterhole" (on your left).
Big Ducky Waterhole
Big Ducky Waterhole

The servicetrail loops around the top of the Big Ducky waterhole and there is a nice rock overhang in which to break. Is also a popular bird watching area. Unfortunately, recently there has been large quantities of rubbish in the area. (If going down to the waterhole please consider carrying out some of the rubbish if every walker carrys out a bit it will make a difference)
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The servicetrail loops around the top of the Big Ducky waterhole and there is a nice rock overhang in which to break. Is also a popular bird watching area. Unfortunately, recently there has been large quantities of rubbish in the area. (If going down to the waterhole please consider carrying out some of the rubbish if every walker carrys out a bit it will make a difference)

After another 420 m (at the intersection of Devlins Creek Trail & Boundary Road Firetrail) continue straight, to head along Devlins Creek Trail.
After another 100 m find the "Whale Rock" (6 m on your left).
Whale Rock
Whale Rock

This is a large boulder that looks eerily like a whale, complete with eye socket. It is a good place to break and climb around the Rock.
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This is a large boulder that looks eerily like a whale, complete with eye socket. It is a good place to break and climb around the Rock.

After another 165 m cross the ford (about 35 m long)
Then cross the ford.
After another 75 m cross the ford (about 30 m long)
Then cross the ford.
After another 210 m continue straight, to head along Devlins Creek Trail.
Then cross the ford (about 25 m long)
After another 8 m cross the ford.
After another 150 m (at the intersection of Devlins Creek Trail & Pennant Hills Trail) continue straight, to head along Devlins Creek Trail.
After another 15 m cross the ford (about 25 m long)
Then pass the sign (9 m on your left).
After another 15 m cross the ford.
After another 6 m (at the intersection of The Great North Walk & Devlins Creek Trail) turn sharp left, to head along The Great North Walk.
After another 110 m pass the sign (5 m on your left).
After another 490 m cross the ford.
After another 410 m continue straight, to head along The Great North Walk.
After another 70 m cross the ford.
After another 20 m continue straight, to head along The Great North Walk.
After another 990 m cross the ford.
After another 65 m (at the intersection of Morona Avenue Firetrail & The Great North Walk) veer left, to head along The Great North Walk (a walking track).
After another 25 m pass the "Walking and Service Trails in the Lane Cove Valley" (on your right).
After another 30 m continue straight, to head along The Great North Walk.
After another 40 m pass the "Depth Marker" (on your left).
After another 220 m pass the "The Great North Walk" (on your right).
Then cross the stepping stones.
After another 35 m head up the 14 stone steps (about 7 m long)
After another 15 m head up the 14 stone steps (about 10 m long)
Then find the "Conscript Pass" (on your left).
Conscript Pass
Conscript Pass

Conscript Pass is a small sandstone pass between the Lane Cove River and Thornleigh, on the Great North Walk. During the 1930s, some stone steps were built through a cleft in the rock as part of a public works program, in response to the depression. The pass has two main engravings. Firstly 'Conscript Pass' is followed with a downwards pointing arrow and a series of initials and numbers. On another wall (that you face when walking up) is engraved 'B Stevens' followed a surprisingly good caricature of the then Premier of NSW, Bertram Stevens. Stevens (later knighted) replaced Jack Lang in 1932 as Premier of NSW, when Lang was dismissed by the Governor (just two months Lang after opening the Sydney Harbour Bridge).
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Conscript Pass is a small sandstone pass between the Lane Cove River and Thornleigh, on the Great North Walk. During the 1930s, some stone steps were built through a cleft in the rock as part of a public works program, in response to the depression. The pass has two main engravings. Firstly 'Conscript Pass' is followed with a downwards pointing arrow and a series of initials and numbers. On another wall (that you face when walking up) is engraved 'B Stevens' followed a surprisingly good caricature of the then Premier of NSW, Bertram Stevens. Stevens (later knighted) replaced Jack Lang in 1932 as Premier of NSW, when Lang was dismissed by the Governor (just two months Lang after opening the Sydney Harbour Bridge).

After another 75 m head up the 27 stone steps (about 20 m long)
After another 9 m head up the 16 stone steps (about 7 m long)
After another 2 m (at the intersection of The Great North Walk & Lorna Pass) turn left, to head along Lorna Pass.
After another 45 m pass the "The Great North Walk" (7 m on your left).
After another 35 m pass the "The Great North Walk" (7 m on your right).
After another 25 m cross the ford.
After another 80 m pass the "The Great North Walk" (on your right).
Then head up the 57 earthen steps (about 60 m long)
After another 15 m turn right.
After another 25 m pass the "The Great North Walk" (on your left).
After another 205 m pass the "Walking and Service Trails in the Lane Cove Valley" (on your left).
Then pass a seat (6 m on your right)., has a backrest.
After another 30 m pass a seat (8 m on your right)., has a backrest.
After another 25 m turn left.
After another 110 m pass the toilet (30 m on your right).

24/7
Continue straight.
After another 70 m find the "Thornleigh Oval" (10 m on your right).
Thornleigh Oval
Thornleigh Oval

Thornleigh Oval is found at the intersection of Handley and Ferguson Avenues, Thornleigh. There is a large playing field, tap water, public toilets and some shelter in the awning of the club house. The oval has a car park, and a number io signs for the Great North walk and other local tracks.
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Thornleigh Oval is found at the intersection of Handley and Ferguson Avenues, Thornleigh. There is a large playing field, tap water, public toilets and some shelter in the awning of the club house. The oval has a car park, and a number io signs for the Great North walk and other local tracks.

Continue straight, to head along Handley Avenue.
After another 10 m pass the "The Great North Walk" (15 m on your right).
After another 120 m (at the intersection of Clifford Avenue & Handley Avenue) continue straight, to head along Handley Avenue.
After another 140 m (at the intersection of Orchard Street & Handley Avenue) turn right, to head along Orchard Street.
After another 320 m pass the "The Great North Walk" (7 m on your right).
At the intersection of Orchard Street & Station Street turn left, to head along Station Street.
After another 200 m (at the intersection of Station Street & Wood Street) continue straight, to head along Station Street.
After another 195 m continue straight.
After another 15 m cross the bridge (about 120 m long)
Then cross the bridge (about 85 m long)
Then cross the bridge (about 4 m long)
Then head down the 14 concrete steps (about 4 m long)
After another 10 m pass the car park (on your right).
At the intersection of Railway Parade & Station Street continue straight (a footpath).
After another 60 m pass a seat (30 m on your right)., has a backrest.
After another 4 m come to the end.
Then pass the "The Great North Walk" (on your right).
About 25 m past the end is a seat., has a backrest.
"Curl and Wisker Cafe".
About 25 m past the end is a toilet., female.
About 15 m past the end is "The Great North Walk".
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Terrain
Know the Hills, grading & facilities

Epping to Thornleigh Station


Grading
Class 4/6
Hard track
Length 7.9 km
Time 2 h 30 min to 3 h
Quality of track Formed track, with some branches and other obstacles (3/6)
Gradient Very steep (4/6)
Signage Directional signs along the way (3/6)
Infrastructure Limited facilities, not all cliffs are fenced (3/6)
Experience Required Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Weather Storms may impact on navigation and safety (3/6)

Some facilities on route
Shelter: There is one 225 m from the start.

Toilet: There are 2 on route, on average they are 2.7 km apart with the largest gap of 7.1 km.

Seat: There are 4 on route, on average they are 1.6 km apart with the largest gap of 6.9 km.


Order of key facilities on route
ItemFrom StartName & link to notes
Shelter
225 m[shelter]
Toilet
7.1 km[toilet]
Toilet
8.1 km[toilet]
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