Tag Archives: bushland

Aranda Bushland Nature Reserve

11 Jan

In the spirit of getting amongst Canberra’s bushland in the hours that stretch out after work in January, our next pick is Aranda Bushland. Nestled between Mt Painter and Black Mountain, I drive past it regularly but have never taken the time to get amongst it. As usual, I’m pleasantly surprised.

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Black Mountain stroll

25 Jan

Looking back towards Belco

Along with Mt Ainslie, Black Mountain (or Telstra Tower) is hard to miss – making it a pretty obvious choice for a Sunday afternoon walk.

Tower peaking through... example of the type of footpath

There are many routes you can take to get up to the top, but we took one of the ones that starts at Belconnen Way. You can pull into a small ‘carpark’ and basically it’s a straight hike towards the mountain.

Black Mountain looks far away, but you cover ground quickly. With my numerous stops to catch my breath, it took us less than an hour to get to the top. The path starts narrow, then gets very wide, before you climb up well placed stones to Canberra’s well known landmark. Well, to Canberra’s well known landmark’s carpark.

More footpath examples

The most unfortunate and well known fact about getting to the top of Black Mountain when you drive up there is the same as when you walk – you can’t see anything. Sure, there are glimpses of the suburbs as you climb up, but once you’re at the top, good luck seeing past the tall trees… unless you’ve brought your wallet and you’re willing to go up to Telstra Tower for the view.

I think Black Mountain is a great walk, but it’s not somewhere I’d be taking any out of town visitors to show off the views of Canberra for free. You’re going to get much better views from Mt Ainslie or nearby Mt Painter (next to Cook – and my favourite Canberra mountain).

But, I won’t deny it – there’s a definite sense of accomplishment from climbing Black Mountain.

Check out the map here.

Infamous Telstra Tower at the top