A visit to Goochs Crater, on the Newnes Plateau, should be on everyone’s must-do list. This is an easy walk, that can be managed by young and old alike. The Crater is a natural crater-like swamp feature, not volcanic in origin, ringed by pagoda-like rock formations. It’s a wonderful spot for photographers.
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This is an easy walk that can easily be managed by active kids. Take care with kids around the Pogada edges. If you have the time, there are lots of spots around the crater you could explore.
PINK FLANNEL FLOWERS ~ When we visited there was a massive amount of those wonderful Pink Flannel Flowers. The most we had seen anywhere, by far.
- Time: 2 -3 hours return including walking down and around in the crater.
- Best time of the day: Any time
- Kid-safe: Yes with supervision, but not little ones
- Dogs on-leash: No
- Steps: Lots
- Accessible: No
- Heights: It’s a bit tricky if you walk around the edges
- Must do rating out of 10: 11
IN THE CRATER: There is a steep track down into the crater, that’s not too tricky. Depending on the water levels in the crater it is possible to walk around the whole floor. When we were there we could only walk about 3/4 of the way around with no access to the caves on the right. After heavy rain, it can become a lake.
ACCESS: You will need a 4wd or all-wheel drive vehicle. The track in is rocky and boggy in patches, nothing too serious.
We travelled from Clarence/Zig Zag along the dirt road to the Glow Worm Tunnel and then turned off onto the “Old Bells Line of Road” and drive for 4km.
The W3W’s link for “Park Here” will take you to the spot.
NB: You can drive down the narrow dirt track for a further 850m and then park there. There is very limited parking. From this spot, it’s a 2.8km return walk. TIP, if the top carpark has lots of cars. Park there and do the longer walk. The other track is too narrow for multiple cars.
HISTORY: The crater is named in memory of Nicholas Andrew Gooch in 1978. Nick was a member of the Kameruka Bushwalking Club who frequently did walks in the area. Nick found what he later described as a crater. As time went on, other walkers referred to the area as Nick Gooch’s Crater although Nick had felt the most appropriate name for the place was Cave Swamp Creek. It seemed that bushwalkers had not visited the area before that time. Aboriginal people had used caves area. As a tribute to Nick Gooch, Springwood Bushwalking Club applied for the name “Gooch’s Crater” to be officially gazetted by the Geographical Names Board. This was granted late in 2004.