In the foothills of Barrington Tops, Copeland Tops State Conservation Area offers rainforest walking tracks, picnic areas, birdwatching and guided tours at a historic mine that are great for school excursions.

Two types of gold have been discovered within the New South Wales area now known as Copeland Tops State Conservation Area. The first was ‘red gold’, which was red cedar highly sought after by Australia’s European settlers. It was the early explorers who came to log along these mountain ridges who then discovered the shiny type, and goldmining took off too. Although conditions would have been tough back then in this rugged and remote area, you’ll discover that it’s actually a beautiful place to have worked in.

Copeland Tops, home to the most accessible tract of rare dry rainforest in the Gloucester district, is simply gorgeous. Hike along old logging tracks beneath a canopy of towering trees on one of the park’s scenic walking trails. There are plenty of great places to picnic.

Copeland State Conservation Area, Mountain Maid Heritage Tour

Tours of the Mountain Maid mine and surrounding heritage gold mining site along the Hidden Treasure Track (only accessible via a guided tour) will start back up in February 2021.

Basin loop walking track copeland

The Basin Loop Track is accessible for general day use. For those who really like to stretch their legs, Basin loop track is the longest walking trail in Copeland Tops. For the northern part of its loop, historic Old Copeland Road. The track will lead you through dry rainforest to open forest that lines the ridge tops of this area. See how the vegetation changes along the way from red cedars, giant stinging trees and strangler figs in the moister, more protected sections of rainforest, to Sydney blue gums and Craven grey box in the sclerophyll forest on the more exposed and drier ridges.

There’s an abundance of birds, so take along binoculars for birdwatching. Many of the park’s animals are nocturnal, but have been known to sometimes keep odd hours. Koalas can, of course, be seen at any time dozing off high up in the fork of gum trees, so keep your eyes peeled.

What did others have to say?

April Dawntildeath

5 months ago

Beautifully maintained and preserved area featuring historical gold mining equipment. The dry rainforest is full of surprises, look out for tiny ferns, plentiful fungi, lichens and other native plants. I recommend you pay for a tour once it becomes available again. Well worth the small fee.

Sharon Burke

a year ago

What a lovely spot this is. Wish I had had time to look at the information. It was sleeting!

Jonathan McCauley

a year ago

Superb hiking offering a choice of a shorter less arduous trail of historic significance or combining same with a longer trail ascending to the summit of Copeland Tops offering magnificent views and transitioning to different eco-systems. I highly recommend the longer 7 km hike.

Russell Johns

2 years ago

Nice walk to see some old mining equipment. They also have guided tours.

Colin Kennedy

2 years ago

What a great spot well, worth the visit.