• Distance 2.2km
  • Altitude max 811m
  • Altitude min 748m
  • Duration 0.75 hours
  • Trail type Loop
Three Stars

Three Stars

Worth Doing

The Australian Hiker Experience Rating is a measure of the overall quality of a walk. It is intended to help you decide whether to walk a trail, not to measure anything objective. Consider this our personal take on the walk.

Grade Three

Grade Three

Suitable for most ages and fitness levels. Some bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may have short steep hill sections a rough surface and many steps. Walks up to 20km.

The Australian Grading system is based on the australian standard for measuring trail hikes.

Rubbish Bins
Camping Grounds

Black Mountain Forest Loop Trail ACT (2.2 km)

Canberra Nature Reserve

Nearest Town

Canberra City

Starting Location

Black Mountain lookout just before you reach the Telstra Tower car park on the summit

Finish Location

Black Mountain lookout just before you reach the Telstra Tower car park on the summit

Best Time to Travel

Year round

Black Mountain Forest Loop Trail Summary

For many people who walk Black Mountain in Canberra the Summit walk is probably the best known trail but there are actually a number of other lesser known and easy to access walks to enjoy. The Forest Loop trail is one such walk.

Starting at the Black Mountain lookout carpark (not the Telstra Tower summit car park) which is across on the right hand side of the summit road about 300 metres from the summit. This carpark is actually quite large, in fact you can easily park 40-50 cars there but to do this walk you ideally would prefer to be a bit closer to the trail head which is immediately adjacent to the carpark entry road which is signposted with a large blue ‘P’ sign. There are two walks that commence from this car park and apart from the Forest Loop Trail there is also a shortish walk up to the Telstra Tower.

The Forest Loop Trail is just that, a loop that sits about 60 metres below the summit and completes a circuit around the summit. There isn’t a huge altitude difference around the summit and apart from the occasional set of steps, this is a very easy walk that anyone can do.

The walk takes in glimpses of the city, Lake Burley Griffin, the Belconnen Town Centre and the National Arboretum. Apart from the views the ability to do a bush walk in the centre of the city through a forested trail is a bonus of  the ‘Bush Capital’. I did this walk for a number of reasons with the main one being I didn’t have much time available but wanted to do a bush walk. For me this walk is about 15 minutes drive from home which means that for a time allowance of less than 1.5 hours I’ve done my walk. A walk of the same length in Namadgi National Park would take me at least twice that time.

All in all this is a great walk, with great views and very easy to do.

Car park entry

Car park at the trail head

The trail head is well signposted

The trail is unsealed once you reach the trail head proper with the only sealed section being the carpark and road if you do the full loop

Belconnen Town Centre

Canberra Centenary Trail marker

Mount Painter in the distance. Another great walk

View of Lake Burley Griffin

Interpretive signage

Bridge on the trail

Burnt bushland

Steps at the end

Across the road

Getting There

To start this walk you need to head up the Black Mountain summit road. About 300 metres prior to reaching the Telstra Tower car park at the summit, you will come across a car park on the right hand side which is actually the Black Mountain lookout


Things to Know

  • Phone: There is reasonably good phone signal on this trail (all networks)
  • Water: Bring your own water
  • Toilets: There are no toilets on this trail
  • Trail: This walk is on formed trail
  • Dogs: Dogs not allowed
  • Camping: Camping not allowed
  • Other: 
    • The starting location for this walk is not the summit but the lookout on the right hand side of the road below the summit


This walk was undertaken by the team from Australian Hiker

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