The Hanging Rock in the Blue Mountains

The Hanging Rock

One of the easiest walks in the Blue Mountains is the Hanging Rock walk. It is ideal for beginners who want to start hiking in the Blue Mountains. The terrain is mostly the fire trail which means it is pretty much flat except for the last part of the walk towards the Hanging Rock. I started my journey in the Blue Mountains by hiking to the Hanging Rock. This is a walk where one can get the spectacular views of the Blue mountains with very minimal effort of hiking.

This track is ideal for mountain bikers too.

Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)

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Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
PIN for later reference – The Hanging Rock and the Baltzer lookout

What is Hanging Rock?

The Hanging Rock is a huge sandstone that is overhanging from the main cliff. It is over 100 meters high. It is one of the most pictured rocks in the Blue mountains. Supposedly, people used to tie ropes and hang off that rock and hence the name Hanging Rock.

Hanging the rock with a rope was later banned as a few people died doing that daring act.

The rock has been featured in many calendars and hiking photographs. It has also been featured in the movie “The Edge”.

According to most photograpers, the ideal time to get to the Hanging Rock is during sunrise. The sunrise enhances the colours of the rock and they make great photographs.

Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
The panoramic view from the Baltzer lookout

Trail details

The walk to the Baltzer lookout is pretty straightforward and is along the main fire trail which is known as the Burramoko fire trail. The lookout provides spectacular views of the Grose Valley in the Blue mountains.

Watch out for cyclists (commonly) and national park vehicles (rarely).

Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
The view of the Hanging Rock from Baltzer lookout
Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
The Hanging Rock

How to get there?

Road

Driving is the quickest and easiest way to get to the car park. The car park is along the Ridgewell Road, about 1 to 2 kilometres from the Blackheath train station. The car park on the Ridgewell Road is around 115 kilometres (2 hours drive) from Sydney.

  • The parking at the car park is not monitored and is absolutely free.

There are toll roads in between the route.

Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
The starting point of the hike

Public transport

  • Blackheath train station is the closest station, which is about 2 kilometers one way from the starting point of the walk.
  • There are trains that run frequently between the city (Sydney Central) and the Blackheath station.
  • More information can be found on the NSW Transport website.
Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
The Baltzer lookout

 Important Information

  • There are no toilet facilities in the car park. There are toilets in the petrol station that is opposite to the Blackheath train station.
  • Ensure to carry some snacks so you can munch along the way or at the Baltzer lookout.
  • Be extra careful at the cliffs and the edges. It is a complete drop into the valley.
  • It is best to avoid the trail during the rains. Even though the fire trail is okay to walk during the rain, but the edges and the path to go down to the Hanging Rock is very slippery.
  • Ensure to carry sufficient water.
  • Wear comfortable and sturdy shoes.
  • DO NOT litter and DO NOT smoke in the national park.
Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
There was a huge bushfire in Australia in the months of December 2019 and January 2020 which has burnt most trees.

Logistics

From Blackheath train station

  • Starting & finishing point: Blackheath train station.
  • Distance: 10 kilometers return from the Hanging Rock car park + 3 kilometres for Blackheath train station.
  • Time: 3 to 3.5 hours.
  • Grade: Easy, except the steep walk from the Baltzer lookout to the Hanging Rock and back.
  • Path (one way): Blackheath train station –> Car park on Ridgewell Road –> Follow Burramoko fire trail –> Baltzer lookout –> Hanging Rock. And return on the same path.

Note: There is a gap between the main trail and the hanging rock. The gap is too big and is very risky. I would not suggest attempting to jump that gap.

From Car park on Ridgewell Road

  • Starting & finishing point: Car park on Ridgewell Road.
  • Distance: 10 kilometers return from the Hanging Rock car park.
  • Time: 2 to 2.5 hours.
  • Grade: Easy, except the steep walk from the Baltzer lookout to the Hanging Rock and back.
  • Path (one way): Car park on Ridgewell Road –> Follow Burramoko fire trail –> Baltzer lookout –> Hanging Rock. And return on the same path.

Note: There is a gap between the main trail and the hanging rock. The gap is too big and is very risky. I would not suggest attempting to jump that gap.

Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
This board is about 1 kilometre from the car park on Ridgewell Road

Is it safe for solo female travelers?

Absolutely YES. The Hanging Rock trail is very safe for solo female travelers. The only risk is at the edges where one needs to be extra cautious and careful. The path after the Baltzer lookout can become very slippery. There are people walking on the trail (even though not as many as on the other trails) so there is help.

Generally, the trails in the Blue Mountains are safe for travelers. But there are many trails that are unmarked and do not have proper path. These trails are definitely risky and dangerous as extra precautions need to be taken at the edges of the cliffs. Also, it is always advisable to have a trekking buddy just so one is prepared for unexpected situations.

Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
At the end of the Burramoko fire trail

Conclusion

I love the Hanging Rock trail. It is a very relaxed trail in the Blue Mountains. I have already done this track twice and I still long to go for more number of times. It is also a great spot for taking beautiful Instagram pictures. I definitely recommend hiking this trail at least once.

As I mentioned earlier, the Hanging Rock trail is awesome for beginners who want to get a taste for hiking trails in the Blue mountains.

If you know any of the other trails in the Blue Mountains that are amazing and worth exploring, please drop in a comment below or write to be on Raksha.Nagaraj@Solopassport.com or Solopassport@gmail.com.

Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
The fire trail

Also read

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Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout (Blue Mountains)
PIN for later reference – The Hanging Rock and the Baltzer lookout
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