Start your climb in the middle of the night to be the first in Australia to watch the sunrise over the easternmost point, Byron’s Bay iconic lighthouse. Combine that with coastal views over the famous Gold Coast and the beautiful inland views over the Tweed Valley, this hike has so much to offer!
Length – 8.8km
Time – 4 hours
Difficulty – Intermediate
Located in the Mt Warning National Park in New South Wales, this 8.8km hike has a switchback trail up the mountain for majority of the way. The last stretch, about 750m before the summit is a fairly steep rock climb with a support chain, a little tricky in the dark but that’s half the fun! Once you get to the chain you are close!!
Depending on your pace and competence in the dark, I wouldn’t recommend starting later than 3am if you would like to see the sun rise.
Once the sun is up, the incredible views have been taken it, start your descend. By 7am you have completed an exhilarating hike, breakfast time!
Waking up at 1am to start the hike by 2:30am wasn’t the hard part. I was beyond excited to do this adventure and had been looking forward to it for quite some time now. I may have mentioned how much I enjoy my coffee in Toronto Café Crawl, so of course the first stop before the hike was to get a coffee and wake up properly. What I may not have mentioned is how forgetful I can be. Once thoroughly caffeinated and eager to start of the hike, I realise that we had only ONE small water bottle and one flashlight. Our headlamps and other waters must have ran away back to bed (or forgot to pack themselves)!!
Lack of supplies will not rain on my parade, up that mountain we go! I found hiking up this trail in the dark to be quite peaceful AND it felt like a whole new hike on the way down since we hadn’t seen anything yet!
Many of the reviews complained about how busy the summit is. The hike itself is rough and very natural, but the top is built for tourists with seating and viewing platforms. There was a fair amount of people there on the morning we hiked, but I think that’s to be expected? This is a beautiful hike and deserves the attention from tourists!