Last updated: June 6, 2021
Horseshoe Falls in Hazelbrook is a small yet scenic waterfall on Hazelbrook Creek, located within Horseshoe Falls Reserve in the Blue Mountains.
An exciting dog-friendly bush walking track leads to this waterfall and three other waterfalls, including Oaklands Falls and Burgess Falls.
Read on to find out more about this track, how to get there, where to park, and how to find all these beautiful natural sights.
We liked Horseshoe Falls so much that we have included it in our list of best waterfalls in the Blue Mountains.
|Horseshoe Falls Walking Track|
|Distance:||3.5 km (return)|
|Grade:||Easy / moderate (rough surface)|
|Dogs:||On a lead|
How to Get There
This walking track is also known as the Burgess Falls Walking Track, as Burgess Falls is the final destination of the walk. It is located within Horseshoe Falls Reserve in Hazelbrook.
The start of the walk, and main access point to the reserve, is located along Oaklands Road, easily accessible via the Great Western Highway.
There is no designated car park for this walk, however most visitors park on a large patch of grass next to the start of the walking track (see map location).
When parking, please be mindful of other traffic. This makeshift parking section is located along a bend in the road, and if you’re not familiar in the area, it’s easy to lose focus and not be aware of other cars around.
If you do choose to park there, it’s recommended to drive southbound so you can make an easier and safer left turn onto this parking area. Alternatively, try free suburban street parking nearby.
Horseshoe Falls Track Notes
The walking track to, and beyond, Horseshoe Falls is a moderately challenging bushwalk that falls outside the boundaries of the National Park.
This means that the walk is managed by the Blue Mountains City Council, and dogs are welcome to join, albeit on a lead at all times.
Due to the location of the track in a gully environment, it can get very muddy, even after only mild rain. Good hiking shoes are recommended, not just to deal with the mud, but to also be able to navigate the rocky and uneven surface of the track.
There are four scenic waterfalls to be discovered along this walk:
- Fairy Falls
- Horseshoe Falls
- Oaklands Falls
- Burgess Falls
Here is a map of the walking track with those four waterfalls marked:
It’s worth noting that while the track is reasonable well signposted, there are various signed and unsigned intersections where things can get a bit confusing.
However, if you stick to the signs, you should be able to find all waterfalls.
1. Fairy Falls
Once you’ve parked your car, look for the start of the walk at the Horseshoe Falls Reserve signpost. This is where the walking track goes straight into the bush.
The track soon arrives at a modest picnic area with a table and benches, after which it crosses Hazelbrook Creek.
After a few hundred meters of hiking through the bush, you will see a sign that says Horseshoe Falls with an arrow pointing to the left.
When you turn left here, and walk a bit further down towards the creek, you will see the very first waterfall. You’d be forgiven for thinking that this is Horseshoe Falls (which is kind of what the sign said), but it isn’t.
We call this waterfall Fairy Falls, but this is not the official name. Various sources on the Internet are saying this is Fairy Falls, others are simply referring to it as an unnamed waterfall.
Regardless, it’s a pretty waterfall, and a great introduction to what’s to come.
2. Horseshoe Falls
Once you’ve finished exploring Fairy Falls, you have two options. You can continue on the main track to Horsehoe Falls, Oaklands Falls and Burgess Falls.
Or you can follow an alternative path which runs slightly closer along the creek. Remember that sign we mentioned? That sign referred to this alternative path, not to the waterfall that we call Fairy Falls. A little confusing, yes.
Whichever path you choose, both will eventually lead to Horseshoe Falls, so it doesn’t really matter which path you follow. Although the main path higher up is perhaps somewhat easier.
Horseshoe Falls is signposted, but this particular sign can actually also lead to a bit of confusion.
Horseshoe Falls is at the left of that sign. And again, you’d be forgiven for thinking that this waterfall is actually Glow-Worm Nook Falls. But no, this waterfall really is Horseshoe Falls.
What this sign is trying to say is that Glow-Worm Nook Falls can be found if you walk past Horseshoe Falls (the path behind the waterfall and underneath the rock overhang), and then up the hill via the stony stairs.
We didn’t actually follow that path to Glow-Worm Nook Falls, so we can’t say much about it, but apparently the track to there is a bit more challenging, according to various sources.
3. Oaklands Falls
Once you’ve finished admiring Horseshoe Falls, it’s time to find Oaklands Falls. Simply retrace your steps to where you saw that Horseshoe Falls sign, and keep walking on the track to Oaklands and Burgess Falls.
This section of the walk is quite scenic, as it goes through a forest with beautiful high trees. The path here is also quite easy to follow.
Oaklands Falls is the third (or fourth, if you decided to go to Glow-Worm Nook Falls) on the walking track.
It’s a very pretty one, and, similar to Horseshoe Falls, you can walk underneath the overhang behind the waterfall, which is quite a unique experience.
4. Burgess Falls
Back on the main track, we’re now getting very close to the fourth and last waterfall, which is Burgess Falls.
This is the least impressive waterfall along the walking track, but still very much worth the effort of going there.
Burgess Falls was named after Lance Corporal Edward Allan Burgess who was killed in action in Belgium in 1917 during the First World War.
He was a local of Hazelbrook, and a plaque was dedicated to his memory by the residents of Hazelbrook in 1918.
From Burgess Falls, retrace your steps to get back on the main walking track.
What About Glow Worms?
Horseshoe Falls is beautiful at daytime, but it turns into a very different spectacle when the sun has set. This is when the glow worms come out, and they can create a beautiful light show.
You can find the glow worms in the rock overhang right behind the waterfall, and seeing these glow worms while it’s pitch black in the bush is a rather unique and surreal experience.
If you do decide to go there after sunset, make sure you bring a torch, as it does get very dark on the track at nighttime. It’s a no-brainer.
Once you get to the cave, turn off all your light sources, and you will see the glow worms appearing.