View up to the Scribbly Gum lookout

Wednesday 7 September 2022: E-M Wednesday Walk Shepherds Walking Track, Shepherd’s Lookout, Molonglo River. We follow the beginning of Shepherd’s Walking Track, Strathnairn until we reach Shepherds Lookout . This is an easy, basically level track with good views towards the Murrumbidgee River. From Shepherd’s Lookout we follow the track downhill until we reach the Molonglo River. Normally you can continue on over a footbridge until you reach the Murrumbidgee. However, because of the unusually wet winter, the Molonglo is in flood so we will probably have a slightly extended lunch amongst the rocks along the river bank. This will allow some time to explore the Molonglo in flood. We return the same way. The climb back to Shepherd’s Lookout takes about 45 minutes if you take it at a slow to moderate pace. There are a few level areas along the way. We then continue back to the cars.
The total length of the walk is 11 kms and the total altitude gain is around 230 metres. Anticipate being back at the cars about 1.30pm..


From Garmin Connect – Distance: 10.90km | Climb: 294m | Time: 2.41 moving + 0:34 of stops = 3:15 | Grading: M/E; E(6).


Photographs are available here.

gpx File

The gpx file is available here.

Track Notes

I last did this walk on 16 Jan 22 and 1 Jan 22.

This is always a delightful track and well worth repeating. I’ll keep it in mind when family come from San Diego and Sydney for Christmas.

This was a Wednesday Walks Easy-Medium activity. The three walking clubs in Canberra, Brindabella Bushwalking Club, Canberra Bushwalking Club and National Parks Association of the ACT take turns in facilitating an easy-medium and medium-hard walk each Wednesday. There are some wonderful trips, recent M-H ones including the Tinderrys and Mt Gudgenby. E-M suit me fine at the moment. If you’re interested, it’s best to contact one of the clubs, as one of the acceptance criteria is “Prospective walkers who are not members of the BBC, NPA or CBC must contact the leader to discuss the level of difficulty of the walk.  Non club members must also be sponsored and accompanied by a club member.

Today’s leader, John E (not me) did an excellent job.

I had pre-arranged to get John’s nod to leave the party at the Molonglo River and walk back immediately, instead of having lunch there. I would then have the opportunity to photograph and locate a few points of interest. But it turned out that a little assistance with a twisted ankle could be offered, so it was a quick trip out. Still, with a combination of photo geotags and times and a look or two via Google Earth, I think I got what I needed.

The signage on Shepherds Track has greatly improved since January. Near the start is …

Shepherds Track signage

… which really tells the full story.

The first metal flower sculpture is a little worse for wear, maybe knocked around by cattle having a scratch.

Great signage at Brindabella Lookout. The views are wonderful.

Brindabella Lookout signage

We took the river view loop on the way in, but powered past the two sets of rock block seats without stopping at the Lookout.

River view loop track junction

The next photo op for me was Shepherds Lookout. Always grand views down to the sweeping Murrumbidgee River.

Shepherds Lookout

The next leg took us down to the Molonglo, the track in places running alongside the Lower Molonglo Water Quality Control Centre (aka Canberra’s sewage plant). Some lovely native clematis track side.

Native clematis

The Molonglo River footbridge was above water, but a lunch halt was called.

Footbridge across Molonglo River

Released as planned from the party, I walked back to Shepherds Lookout to see if I could offer any assistance to a party member with a twisted ankle. Arrangements were made, so two of us hot-footed it back to the cars. Still, time to make some snaps on the way.

The view up the gully to the Scribbly Gum lookout is impressive.

View up to the Scribbly Gum lookout

Another interesting area, freshly signed since I was last here, is the Callitris Forest.

Callitris Forest signage and NE edge

A lovely stretch of stone work just before (on the return leg) Double Dam.

Double Dam and signage

My companion and I did a little car work and the twisted ankle was picked up. All good.

Track Map

Here’s where we went.

Track Shepherds Walking Track to Shepherd’s Lookout and Molonglo River


I wasn’t leading, so I didn’t count. But I think I heard a page and a bit of walkers, so around 18 or 19. John E leader.