Hellgate Gorge

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Brief notes

Definitely one for the trail enthusiast. This run will suit those wanting to take the next step in trail running after Six Foot Track and also those wishing to prepare for longer trail ultras later in the year. For those looking for something more sporting, there is also 100k option. The Hellgate original course takes in a portion of the Six Foot Track and is a loop that crosses the Jenolan Gorge twice. It can be extended with an out and back section to Kanangra Walls. Both options are generally remote and take in fire trail, technical trail and one short (800m) bush-bash section. All options contain several challenging ascents and descents and much of the route/s are over 1000m above sea level.

Date/Time of next run

Saturday 6th April 2013. Time 8:00AM

Start Location

The Deviation Campground on the Six Foot Track. The turn off from the Jenolan Caves Road is approximately 13.4kms (by road) before the caves - NB there is a "JC 15k" sign approximately 1.6k before the turn. The turnoff is not signposted as Black Range Road however there is a sign that reads "Duckmaloi Farm" pointing to the right (which is Boggy Creek Road). You need to turn left here and follow the fire trail for approximately 1.2kms to arrive at the Black Range/Deviation intersection - go straight across and the campground is approximately 100m further on.

Alternatively there is a second turn approximately 500m further on though it is a bit less obvious.

Click to view map to the start/finish

Finish Location

Same as start.

Start Facilities

Campground (free), toilets, water tap, picnic tables (2).


46km - Hellgate Original option (2,530m ascent/descent)

100km - Hellgate Bouncing Off The Walls option (4020m ascent/descent)

Entry Details

See the On the Day Details page.

Please note that to ensure you don't miss any late breaking info read this website or the Fat Ass section of the CoolRunning Messageboards.

Time Limit

None - take as long as you like.

Entry Fee


Course Summary

A very difficult run in the Kanangra Boyd National Park on fire trails, technical single-file bush tracks and one short (800m) bush-bash section. Lots of up and down. Spectacular views but very hard work.

From the intersection of Black Range and the Deviation the course initially follows the Six Foot Track to Jenolan Caves. The route then follows the Jenolan River to the Jenolan Campground. Runners then head bush up the ridge (short but steep) towards "Oaky Camp" where the course becomes a fire trail that leads up to Mt Whiteley and the Kanangra Road. Follow the Kanangra Rd East for approximately 2.5kms to Mt Lakeman and the intersection with the Blood Filly Fire Trail. Follow the Blood Filly Fire Trail (heaven to trail runners) to the Moorara Boss Fire Trail. The subsequent descent to the Jenolan River and climb on the other side are somewhat challenging. Eventually the Moorara Boss Fire Trail leads back to Black Range, turn left and continue back to the start/finish.

Those doing the Bouncing Off The Walls option turn right instead of left at the Moorara Boss/Blood Filly Fire Trail intersection and complete an undulating 28km on fire trails to Kanangra Walls and return (56km total). See detailed course description below.

Detailed Course Description and Maps

Participants should consider purchasing the 1:25,000 Department of Lands map "Jenolan" - however the course description and maps below are provided for your assistance. No guarantee is given for the accuracy of the waypoints or course description. Participants should rely on their own navigation skill.

Alternatively you can print off your own.

Detailed Course Description PDF

BOTW Course Description (not so detailed) PDF

Hellgate Waypoints PDF
Bouncing Off The Walls Waypoints PDF

Hellgate Map 1 PDF
Hellgate Map 2 PDF
Hellgate Map 3 PDF
Hellgate Map 4 PDF
Bouncing Off The Walls Map PDF NB Map contains 3 pages and route is in red

Satellite Image 1 JPG
Satellite Image 2 JPG

Course Profile

Hellgate Original Course Profile

Click to enlarge

Aid Summary

As much of this run is above 1,000m runners should be prepared to be self-sufficient in case of bad weather. As there will be no aid supplied, sufficient water and food should be carried - though it would be very difficult to do this run without putting out at least one water drop. Luckily there are some sections of the route that are easily accessed by 2WD vehicle for food/water drops or meeting crews:

Depending on your own plans water can be available at:

The start/finish - bring your own or use the tank
Jenolan Caves (10.3kms) tap on RHS immediately after stairs or at the toilets further down on the left
Jenolan Campground (12.5kms) tap just 20 meters further on from the locked gate (the campground was closed last time I was there and it is possible the taps have been removed)
The Kanangra Road from Mt Whiteley to Mt Lakeman (17.5kms to 20kms) meet crew or do prior drop
The Black Range/Moorara Boss fire trail intersection - weather dependent for 2WD (39kms) meet crew or do prior drop.

The course also crosses the Jenolan River for the second time at 34kms and whilst the water looks pristine, it should be noted that the Jenolan Sewerage Works is licenced to discharge up to 200 kilolitres of chlorinated recycled water into the river per day - you choose. I have successfully drunk the water using a Steripen and thinking of white fluffy bunny rabbits, with no ill effects other than it worries me that thinking of rabbits can distract me from the fact that I'm drinking from a stream that contains recycled pooh.

Route Marking Summary

There will be no track markings specifically put up for this run. The Six Foot Track sections have track markers. You should download the maps of the course, the course description and/or purchase your own topo's (as per above). You should also bring along a plastic envelope or something to keep the map dry if it rains or if you sweat heavily. A compass may also be a useful addition.

2007 Results

10 starters - 10 finishers

2007 Results Excel Format

Further Information

2007 Thread on Coolrunning

2P's Reconnaissance Report Solo run to explore the feasibility of the course 14/01/07

Spuds Report Inaugural running 21/04/07