Mount Warning Wollumbin is the first place in Australia to see the sunrise over the easterly most point of Byron Bay. The reward on reaching the summit, (1157m), is a 360 degree panorama of the enormous eroded rim ancient volcano, of which Mount Warning was the central plug. Climbing the mountain is a rewarding experience and a must do in the Tweed region. It gives you a true prespective of the amazing ‘Australia’s Green Cauldron’ region.
The walk starts at the base of Mount Warning approximately 50 minutes drive south west from Tweed Billabong through Murwillumbah. The walk is quite steep in places, but the effort is worth it. On a great day the views stretch from Byron Bay to the Gold Coast, Clarrie Hall Dam and the secenic rim to the west.
The walk is 8.8kms return and takes around 3-4 hours depending upon your fitness. It is best to start early in the morning before it gets hot and the track is too busy. It is recommended that you do not start after 2pm in winter (I would say earlier) because the path is covered by trees and gets dark in the afternoon light. The track starts with lots of stairs which can be a struggle early in the morning! It then changes to gentle paths back and forth across the mountain to reach the final stage – the chains.. Arhh. The last 100m perhaps is steep rocks with chains to help you up and down. There are a few different platforms to check out the view from the top. Try to allow 30 minutes at least to view, rest and snack. Take a camera and a long sleeve shirt, it can get cold. Coming down the chains is like abseiling at times. This area can be slippery when wet, but that adds to the fun.
We have seen a few brush turkeys, wallabies and birds. You may even see a snake so come prepared. Take lots of water and snacks. Chocolate helps to bribe the kids (and yourself). My 6 year old daughter walked with us last time and there were other young children on the track. Kids would have to be keen walkers though because it is difficult.
We have also climbed it for the sunrise which is a totally different experience and once again worth the effort. You need to start around 3am (check the sunrise time) with a good torch and remember to hug the inner side of the path. When coming down in the daylight you will notice that the track drops off steeply in some places. Suprisingly there were alot of other people doing the AM walk, so you won’t be alone. Take a flask of hot chocolate, sit back and watch the sunrise. It’s an awesome experience.