The Keppel Falls Trail was one I proudly completed by accident. Having parked gamely at the Steavenson Falls and doing a small circuit of what the waterfall, we gave in to the temptation of just going up a little bit, just to the first lookout to see how the trail’s like.
Of course we wouldn’t finish the hike. We’ll just go back down again after that, in time for lunch. These were the famous last words that we told ourselves.
From there onwards, it became a silly game of ‘just to the next lookout point’, until we realised we were truly and seriously halfway around the trail and to go back would take the same amount of time going forward and completing it.
The well-formed track is essentially an 11-12 km loop that can be broken in up in several places. It’s well-marked too, with vegetation that’s showing great signs of regrowth. The uphill hike from the Steavenson Falls is probably the steeper part of the trail but gradually flattens out as you coast through to the De La Rue Lookout and straight onto the stunning next.
It is not the easiest hike but neither is it the worst when it comes to undulating terrain. The trail starting from Steavenson Falls is what I’d recommend starting at, as nothing really compares to the sudden clearing of the bush to the magnificent panoramic views from the first lookout point.
The entire hike took about 3-ish hours, but leave more time to appreciate nature (at higher elevation, the fragrance of the golden wattle flowers permeates the whole place), more even if you choose to have lunch at the lookout.