The closest suburb to the trailhead is Aranda, ACT
Trailhead along Caswell Drive, ACT. This car park will cope with 20+ cars
Trailhead car park along Caswell Drive, ACT. This car park will cope with 20+ cars
Year round. Avoid peak hour to allow for easy car park access
This is another walk located within less than 10 minutes drive of the city centre and is easily doable by hikers of all levels. While this walk is enjoyable and worth doing just to get out and about, its main claim to fame is that this is the closest walk to the city centre where you can be pretty much guaranteed of seeing kangaroos.
The walk starts just adjacent to the base of Black Mountain on the left side of Caswell Drive, just past Glenloch interchange. You need to approach this walk from the correct side of the road otherwise you will have to park on the side and walk under an underpass which adds a little extra distance. Caswell Drive is busy during peak hour so it’s best to avoid doing this walk at that time. You can also park near the entry style to the walk but that is not on a designated parking area and there is limited space.
The Frost Hollow to Forest walk takes in old rural farmland and natural forest which is where the walk gets its name so it provides a variety of landscapes that will keep everyone happy. The adjacent Black Mountain Tower and the mountain itself is visible from a number of different vantage points. There is a good sized mob of kangaroos located in the main grassy paddock and they are obviously used to walkers because they will generally stay still even if you get close.
Follow the marker signs from the car park and you will come to the management road which you cross over into the forested hill. The vegetation changes almost instantly to continuous woodland at this point. While other nearby walks have similar woodland this walk feels a bit more remote once you get into treed ares. Continue on up the hill and you come to an incline and it’s at this stage that you need to loop to the left and start heading through the forest down the hill for your return journey. Please note that at the time we did this walk the marker post with the directional arrow had fallen over and it wasn’t obvious that you needed to turn here.
As you head down through the forest you will come across a management road which is where you can turn left or cross over and take a short walk through forest on the other side of the road. Both options end up back at the same point so the choice is yours. From here its back through the fence to either head back to the start the way you came or follow the alternate route signage that takes you back to the start on the other side of the dam before taking you back to the trail head car park.
This is a great little walk and as mentioned a great opportunity to take visitors to see kangaroos.
Trailhead start at the end of the car park
Make your away along the path to the walk proper
Follow the signage towards the Aranda Snow Gums for the trailhead proper
And through the underpass
And off we go, over the style
Trail start signage
Follow the well marked trail
A kangaroo free zone. This fenced off area shows what can happen without the local wildlife grazing all day
Ducks on the trail, not your usual birdlife in the Canberra region
Part of this walk is on the Canberra Centenary Trail
Follow the signs
Dam on the Frost Hollow to Forest Walk
If you want to see kangaroos close to the city centre then this is the walk for you
Across the gully. As you can see to the right, the kangaroos aren’t bothered by walkers
Cocky in flight
Black Mountain Tower
Seating on the trail
Up the hill
Into the forest
Break time, loop around and head downhill at this stage. When we did this walk the sign had fallen over so we had to check which direction
And heading downhill
Along the management road
Through the fence
A popular walk
Heading back to the start
Over the style
Look for the small stuff
Back to the car park
This short video contains a series of images that takes you through the length of this walk providing you with a pictorial overview of what to expect
The main trailhead car park is along the base of Black Mountain on Caswell Drive. To use this car park you will need to travel from the city to the lake, loop around and head up Caswell Drive. This trailhead is around 7 km from the Canberra GPO and around a 10 minute drive. Be careful otherwise you will drive past the entry
Turn off into the car park. You will need to turn off Caswell Drive heading along the base of Black Mountain Avoid accessing this car park during peak hour
This car park will comfortably fit around 20+ cars
Elevation profile for the Frost Hollow to Forest Walk
This walk was undertaken by the team from Australian Hiker