Our Latest News

Join us for the Power of Parks forum at Launceston

22/07/2016

Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS) in partnership with the University of Tasmania is exploring The Power of Parks through a series of UTAS public forums celebrating the benefits that parks and reserves provide to Tasmania's overall identify.More

Shipwreck identified as the Viola

19/07/2016

Timber samples from a ship wrecked on Tasmania's East Coast nearly 160 years ago have been identified as the Canadian-built brig Viola.More

Prosecution for Stanley penguin deaths

15/07/2016

The Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS) and the Circular Head Council have conducted a joint investigation after 18 little penguins were found dead near a rookery in Stanley on the State's North-West coast last week.More

Walls of Jerusalem

Please note: Walks within the Walls of Jerusalem National Park are challenging. The park can experience harsh weather conditions at any time of the year. There are limited walker's huts within the park - walkers must carry a tent. The summits within the park are quite exposed and should not be attempted in adverse weather. Walkers must be fully self-sufficient, well-equipped and experienced.

Introduction

Rich alpine vegetation communities are a feature of the Walls of Jerusalem. Photo by Steve Johnson
The Walls of Jerusalem are located in a remote area of the Tasmanian highlands and are part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. The area is a spectacular labyrinth of alpine lakes and tarns, dolerite peaks, ancient but fragile forests of Pencil Pines and unique alpine vegetation.

There is no road access into the park and entry is only possible by walking. There are no facilities for shortstop visitors other than toilets at Wild Dog Creek. All tracks into the area are steep and rough and are subject to extreme weather conditions that can include heavy rain, hail, snow, freezing temperatures and blazing sun. Low cloud can reduce visibility to a few metres and snow can cover the track making it difficult to follow. There are limited track markers so navigational skills are essential during poor conditions. These conditions can occur in any month of the year and the weather can change dramatically within a few short hours.

Bushwalkers must be well equipped and preferably experienced in Tasmanian conditions. Walkers must also follow Leave No Trace Principles to ensure the unique and majestic beauty of the area is not impacted.

Lake Salome Photo by Peter Grant

When to walk

The months of December-April have long daylight hours and warmer average temperatures. However, walkers are warned that rapidly changing weather conditions can occur at any time of the year. These can include howling winds, sleet, snow, relentless rain and blazing sun. All of these varied conditions can be experienced even within a single day. For further details see our page on Bushwalker's Weather.


What to bring

Warm waterproof clothing, solid walking boots and energy-rich food, proper equipment and adequate preparation are essential. Overnight parties must carry a tent, portable fuel stove and trowel (for burying faecal waste). Full details are found in the Before you Walk - Tasmania's Essential Bushwalking Guide and Trip Planner

The 1:25,000 scale map, Walls of Jerusalem National Park, Map and Notes is essential for any walks in the Walls. It shows all tracks, and includes text on walking notes, heritage and safety information. Walkers should note that magnetic mineral deposits in the region may affect compass readings. You can order the map from our online shop.


Access to the start of the track

The Walls of Jerusalem National Park is not accessible by road. Bushwalkers must walk into the park from the car park located off the gravel Mersey Forest Road near Lake Rowallan. The car park is reached from Deloraine by following the B12 through Mole Creek and taking Mersey Forest Road (C138 then C171) to Lake Rowallan. A gravel road approximately 4.8km past the Lake Rowallan dam wall on the left just after the Fish River leads to the car park.

The only infrastructure near the carpark is a registration booth. There are no public phones or toilets. It is not advisable to leave valuables in the car.

There is no public transport to this area, although some operators may offer charters. See our access pages for further details.

The park boundary is reached by following the walking track up through forest for about 0.5 hour. It is at least a further two hours to the Wild Dog Creek campsite near the start of the high exposed plateau. 


Accommodation near the start of the track

There are no accommodation or facilities near the start of the walk into the Walls of Jerusalem. The closest hotels and other facilities are at Mole Creek and Deloraine.


Permits and Fees

As the area is a national park, walkers must have a Park Pass. See our web pages for details of Park Passes and where they can be purchased. Bookings are not required to walk in the Walls of Jerusalem National Park, and no permits other than a Parks Pass are required.


Walker Logbooks

For your safety please record your trip intentions in the log book at the walker booth at the Fish River carpark, or at the other track heads leading into the park. 

Log books are only checked if someone reports you missing or overdue. Leave a trip plan with a reliable friend or relative and plan to call them when you return. If that person doesn't get your call they can phone the police, who with the Rangers will check the log books, and initiate a search if necessary.


Huts and camping

Tent platform at Wild Dog CreekPhoto by Peter Grant
Camping platforms with a water supply and a toilet have been developed at Wild Dog Creek. This is close to Herods Gate, about 2-3 hours walk from the carpark. Walkers are encouraged to camp at Wild Dog Creek on the camping platforms provided as it's a fairly robust and well-drained site. Camping is also possible at Dixons Kingdom, a further 1-1.5 hours walk past Wild Dog Creek. A temporary toilet has also been installed at this site to cater for camping. Walkers are asked not to camp beneath or near the pencil pines. 

The inner Walls region (the area between Herods Gate and Damascus Gate, including the Pools of Siloam and Bethesda) is easily impacted, and with mainly internal drainage it is subject to faecal contamination. Camping within this area of the park is discouraged for environmental reasons.

Please use hot water and a scourer to clean plates and cookware. Soaps and detergents are not welcome in the bush. Despite their name, biodegradable products still impact on water-life. Dish washing should be done 50 metres away from water and the waste water scattered.

There are no other substantial facilities within the Walls of Jerusalem National Park. All persons entering the park must be fully self-sufficient. Bushwalkers must carry a tent. There are two huts within the park in which walkers are permitted to sleep in - Lake Meston and Junction Lake. All other huts within the park have historical significance and are often in poor condition. Overnight use of these huts is prohibited except in case of emergency.


Walks within the Park

Scoparia, one of the many endemic alpine species within the WallsPhoto by Grant Dixon
The Walls of Jerusalem offers experienced bushwalkers (and after snow falls, cross-country skiers) the opportunity to pursue their passion within a spectacular mountain region that is little touched by the modern world.

A walking track leads from the car park near Lake Rowallan through sclerophyll forest before entering the alpine regions of the park at Herods Gate. The track continues to Dixons Kingdom and Mt Jerusalem (1459 m). 

In summer there may be no water between the Fish River (near the carpark) and Solomons Jewels. The creek near Trappers Hut doesn’t always flow.

At the saddle of Damascus Gate there is a 4-ways track junction from which tracks up Solomons Throne (to the west) and The Temple (to the east) can be taken. Please don't climb up Solomons Throne or onto the West Wall by any route other than the track. 

Walkers are encouraged not to venture beyond these hardened tracks. Much of the Walls of Jerusalem is managed as a remote, trackless wilderness destination. Any walkers venturing into the area must be experienced and self-reliant.


Walking times

Its possible to see part of the Walls of Jerusalem as a long day walk. However, it’s best to spend 2 nights at Wild Dog Creek, giving you a full day to explore the inner Walls.

The following walking times cover just a few of the more popular sections. They are based on the typical time that a walker of average physical fitness, carrying a full pack, is likely to take to cover the distance (one way) in fair weather. Times allow for short rests and drink breaks, but not extended stops, side trips or difficult weather conditions.

  • Carpark (off Mersey Forest Rd) to Wild Dog Creek Campsite via Trappers Hut: 2-3 hours one way
  • Wild Dog Creek Campsite to Central Walls (Pool of Bethesda): 1 hour one way
  • Wild Dog Creek Campsite to Dixons Kingdom: 11/2 - 2 hours one way
  • Trappers Hut to Lake Adelaide (via Lake Loane): 3 - 4 hours one way


Water

Few places on Earth have water as pristine as in the Tasmanian wilderness. Of course, the water within our national parks is not treated and may not meet health guidelines for drinking water. Although the risks to your health are low, authorities suggest it should be treated. Always treat water (e.g. boil for three minutes) where water flow is low and visitor use is high.

Take special care to keep water supplies clean.


Toilets

The only installed toilets are at Wild Dog Creek and Dixons Kingdom. To ensure efficient operation of the toilets, please follow the instructions provided. 

Please make an effort to use these toilets; if however, you get caught out in an area away from the toilets, faecal waste must be buried 100 m away from any watercourses or campsites. Carry a lightweight trowel in your pack, dig a hole 15 cm deep and bury your waste and toilet paper. Otherwise, consider using a "poo tube" to carry out your waste.


Fuel Stove Only Area

You will require a fuel stove for cooking as the entire area is a Fuel Stove Only Area. Heavy fines can be imposed for lighting fires in these areas. This region is extremely sensitive to fire - large areas of pencil pine and other vegetation have been destroyed by fire. Use fuel stoves only.

Walk softly

Keep on track

Try and minimise your impact with every step you take. Always walk in the centre of the track and be prepared to walk through the mud. Attempting to skirt bogs only makes them wider and causes more environmental damage. It is also usually much quicker to walk straight through.

Group size

Walking in large groups is discouraged within this park due to the sensitive alpine environment, as well as for safety and social reasons. Keep your party size to no more than 6 people. Large groups can be difficult to accommodate and have greater social and environmental impact. For further infomation on permitted groups sizes for the various tracks within this park, please contact the Great Western Tiers Field Centre, on 6363 5133.

Phytophthora root rot

Phytophthora cinnamomi is a fungus that kills many of our native plants. Mud and soil, which is carried on vehicles, boots, gaiters and toilet trowel, helps to spread the disease.

All boots, tent pegs and other equipment should be thoroughly cleaned before entering this region. 

For further details, see our Phytophthora root rot pages.

Keep wildlife wild

Bennetts wallabies Photo by Peter Grant
Animals such as possums and native mice can carry disease by licking your cookware and cause rubbish to be scattered when they break into garbage bags. At night, stow rubbish securely in your packs. The vestibule of your tent is not a secure place. Rigid plastic containers are useful for storing food. Do not feed animals and ensure that no food scraps are left in huts or outside. Processed food is not part of their natural diet and, in some cases, can lead to the death of native animals. It can also result in unnaturally high populations occurring in the vicinity of the campsite. See our web pages on Keeping Wildlife Wild for more details.

Rubbish

All rubbish must be carried out with you. Rubbish includes cigarette butts!  Please don’t put any rubbish into the composting toilets, as this restricts the composting process.

For full details of how to minimise your impact upon the environment in which you walk, see our Leave No Trace guidelines.

Walk Safety

The weather in Tasmania's high country can change rapidly. The Walls of Jerusalem National Park is subject to high winds, mist, rain, hail and snow - even in summer. It is imperative that walkers carry clothing that can withstand such relentless conditions and ensure that they are not at risk of hypothermia.

For you safety:

  • Plan to walk safely – know your way, walk within your capabilities.
  • Be prepared – take clothing and equipment to suit changeable weather and track conditions.
  • Avoid walking alone – walk with friends.
  • Let a reliable person know your plans, before you go – be sure to advise them of your safe return.
  • Record your trip intentions in the log books – this will help searchers to locate you if you are reported overdue or missing.
  • Be prepared to turn back, or change your plans, if the weather deteriorates or the walk is more difficult than expected.

For detailed information on planning your walk, walking safely and a gear checklist, see our  Before you Walk - Tasmania's Essential Bushwalking Guide and Trip Planner