Happy walkers at Burnt Stump Hill

Sunday morning 31 December 2023: Eastern Hills of Goorooyarroo * – M/E-M. An early New Years Eve ramble along the eastern hills of Goorooyarroo Nature Reserve. You’ll be home for lunch and to get your glad rags on to count in 2024. From the Mandawari Gate on Horse Park Drive (just west of the Federal Highway interchange), we’ll walk through Gecko Hills, Old Joe and Gooroo Hill. Returning via the Canberra Centenary Trail, we’ll also check out the view from Sammys Hill and Burnt Stump Hill. Some may remember Julie H who went north to live. She’s coming through Canberra and will be on this walk. Around 10km and 400vm climb. Lovely country and great views.


From Garmin Connect (Epix Gen 2) – Distance: 11.04km | Climb: 400vm (Elev Corrections Enabled) | Time: 2:53 moving + 1:04 of stops = 3:57 | Grading: M/E-M; M(9).


View photographs here.

gpx file

Download the gpx file here.

Track Map

Here’s where we went.

Track Eastern Hills of Goorooyarroo

Trip Report

I was last in this area on 10 Apr 23.

No need to start early to beat the heat – it was a cool and overcast morning. Lovely to see Julie back in Canberra with her walking companion Sandra. Thank goodness Michael booked on to make it 2 boys and 10 girls.

Away at 7.05am down through the Mandawari (Bandicoot) Gate 17, a bit of CCT fire trail and a right turn to find the Baray (Possum/Sugar Glider) Gate 16. We soon left this part of the CCT and made a (sort of) B-line for the southern knoll of Gecko Hills. A many-trunked tree on the way.

5-trunked tree

We strolled through the saddle to the northern knoll.

North Gecko Hills survey markers

Continuing north along the watershed we stopped at border marker X4, still going strong after Percy Sheaffe and his team popped it in the ground over 110 years ago.

Border marker X4

Down, then a puff up to Old Joe Hill. You can check out the naming story here,

We followed the watershed generally NNE, coming across another interesting looking tree.

Tree with colourful butt

Gooroo Hill was our final destination before turning back.

Milling about at Gooroo trig

We went through the fence at the Banggu Gate 13 and headed down to the valley floor to walk the CCT south. A wiggle across Sulivans Creek and a puff up a vehicle track took us to Sammys Hill for smoko.

Back down we continued south on the CCT, turned west through a gate, south through a fence step-through and ((thankfully) through multiple gates to get us a clear run up to Burnt Stump Hill. Some great trees.

Lovely eucalypts on the N flank of Burnt Stump Hill

A grassy top.

Approaching Burnt Stump Hill

Great views all round and to many of the tops we’d visited.

A plunge down the SE side, passing a sad looking Blackwood.

We think a Blackwood Wattle’s defence against wasp infestation

A good round on the last day of the year and home early to collect brownie points for more outings. Thanks all.


12 walkers – Helen B, Michael C, Andrea C, Janet D, Julie H, Jenny H, Sandra K, Rivera M, Lauren O, Lam S, Alice S, me.


The AllTrails map is here, where you can pan and zoom.

Johnny Boy’s Walkabout Blog FaceBook Page

I’ve started up a FaceBook page. Each trip report posts to it. It’s another way to get some info to get out and breathe a bit of fresh air. Why not pop over and Follow the page, or give a post a Like.