Nightcap National Park Concept Design

Northern Rivers – 2016

Nightcap National Park is located in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, north of Lismore and east of Byron Bay. Whian Whian State Conservation Area lies within the south east of Nightcap National Park.

The World Heritage Area features unique Gondwana rainforests, waterways, gullies, ridges and peaks, offering a variety of recreational opportunities such as swimming, bush walking,
horse riding and mountain bike riding.

Aboriginal communities with connection to the region include the Nganduwal, Galibal, Githabul and Widjabal. The region is part of the Bundjalung Nation, and the parks landscapes, plants and animals feature prominently in Aboriginal culture and dreaming stories. There are sites of cultural significance in the area.

Concept designs have been prepared in consultation with Mackenzie Pronk Architects and National Parks and Wildlife Service for the Rummery Park campground, Minyon Falls, Minyon Grass and Telephone Road in the Nightcap National Park.

Rummery Park campground is situated within the Whian Whian State Conservation Area, in the Nightcap National Park.

Offering a peaceful, relaxing picnic and camping experience in a World Heritage rainforest, Rummery is a popular destination for day users and family holiday visitors.

Currently the campground is a base point for nearby Nightcap National Park attractions and destinations, including a variety of short and long walking trails, and areas with trails designated for mountain biking and horse riding.

With its undulating topography, existing tracks and trails, and close proximity to Minyon Falls, Minyon Grass, and Telephone Road,
the area presents the potential as a unique rainforest adventure destination.

Key strategies and solutions include:

– Preserve identity as rainforest adventure destination and base point for nearby Nightcap National Park attractions
– Improve existing campsites and amenities providing new camping platforms, and expand into old plantation forest areas and along existing trails/roads
– Provide new walk-in eco-cabins with nearby car parking
– Provide new precinct for large vehicle drive-through and multi-use sites with ensuite amenities shelters
– Provide horse riders and mountain bikers camping area with Long House and campsites

Minyon Falls is a popular picnic destination and features the Minyon Falls Lookout, where Repentance Creek plunges over 100m, flowing down over enormous cliffs that were once part of the Tweed Volcano.

The Minyon Loop Walk connects Minyon Falls Lookout with Minyon Grass, winding along forested cliffs, past a swimming hole at the base of Minyon Falls, and through a deep palm-shaded gorge.

Key design features include:

– Complete trail loop and connections between Minyon Falls and Minyon Grass
– Aggregate and improve existing picnic facilities with boardwalk entry structure and picnic platforms located to the outside of circulation routes, re-vegetate central area
– Improve lookout platform – set back from cliff edge, retain accessibility, provide safe edge to balustrade
– Create new lookout platforms, and boardwalk along eastern ridge-line to connect with Minyon Grass
– Create new eco-cabin precinct with A-Frame cabins, entry gates and signage, carparking and connecting pathways

Minyon Grass picnic area is located on the eastern edge of Nightcap National Park, with BBQ’s, picnic tables and toilets, and features a viewing platform looking back across the gorge to Minyon Falls.

Key design features include:

– New extended lookout platform with interpretive signage
– Emphasise the view corridor with long picnic table located along lookout platform axis
– Create uniting centralised interpretive artwork
– Create new boardwalk to the north to connect with Minyon Falls Lookout
– Relocate existing picnic areas and upgrade with new tables and BBQ facilities

* Illustrations by Neil Mackenzie