WINGELLO STATE FOREST IS CLOSED DUE TO BUSHFIRES UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
WINGELLO STATE FOREST
HORSE RIDING TRAILS
Southern Highlands Endurance Ride Inc has established a network of permanently marked horse riding trails within the Wingello State Forest, in collaboration with NSW Forestry Corporation, and with financial support from the NSW Office of Sport and New-Moon Stud. The trails were officially opened on 7th September 2018 by The Honourable Pru Goward MP.
Not every intersection along a route has been marked with a sign. Follow the track you are on and ignore tracks on your left and right until a sign directs you to make a turn.
Please do not follow the designated mountain bike trails – sections of these trails have been created by mountain bikers with private resources, and the trails are easily damaged by horses.
Please advise if you have any problems following the trails. If you find yourself lost, phone Bec Hogan 0412 600 173.
TRAIL HEAD & FLOAT PARKING AREA
Forestry Corporation have designated a horse float parking area approximately 500m further along the main Forest (Caoura) Road from the existing general camping area – drive into the general camping area and keep going straight through. You will see the horse riding trails sign on the left side of the road at the start of the float parking area. This is for the health and safety of horses and other forest users, and enables space for float manoeuvring. Please park and camp here with your horses rather than in the general camping area.
The marked horse riding trails start from the float parking area.
Toilet facilities are available in the general camping area. Logs for seating and mounting have been installed at the float parking area, and the potential for other specific horse facilities to be installed is being investigated.
Two trails have been marked, the Fern Gully Trail (orange signs) with a total distance of 18km, and the New-Moon Trail (blue signs) with a total distance of 31km.
Each trail has short-cuts marked with green arrows, to provide a range of shorter distances, as shown on the Map Legend. The Fern Gully Trail short-cuts are marked in both directions, so you can choose to ride either the first part of the trail, or the middle section, or the last section.
There is also the option of adding the Fern Gully Trail on to the New-Moon Trail without returning to the trail head, to create a total distance of 45km, or a range of shorter options using the short-cuts.
A horse riding trail map is displayed on a large sign at the trail head. A draft version of a map to save and print to bring with you is provided below. This final version of this map will be available for free download, and for purchase at a large size from the merchandise page on this website, when available.
Forestry Corporation have welcomed and given much support to the marking of these horse riding trails. Please respect that the forest is a work site first and a recreation facility second, and show due courtesy to forestry officers. Wingello State Forest is subject to ongoing harvesting. You may encounter logging trucks and machinery. There may be temporary trail closures or marked detours. You must adhere to warning and advisory signs.
The marked trails are public roads. You may encounter other trail users such as mountain bikes, trail bikes, cars, sled dogs and pedestrians. Normal road rules apply – please keep to the left side of roads where possible, and show respect to other users. Take particular care when riding through the general camping area, as there may be children running around.
Wingello State Forest is occasionally closed to the public for large sporting competitions, such as the annual Wingello Forest Endurance Ride held on the 4th weekend in May each year. If planning a visit to the forest it is worth checking this site www.forestrycorporation.com.au/visit/closures to see the forest closure calendar.
There may be other smaller sporting events that do not close the forest, such as mountain bike races and sled dog events. Events requiring permits are also shown on the forest closure calendar.
Parts of the Wingello State Forest are under license to bee keepers. There are several regular bee hive sites located along forest roads (to be shown on the final trail map which is in preparation). There are no sites currently known to be active within the forest, but this can change without notice. We will endeavor to provide information about the location of active bee sites on this website and on the Wingello Forest Endurance Ride facebook page. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you wish to notify us of a newly active bee site (or other unusual trail hazard).
Note that the trails are marked with directional arrows to show a route along existing forest roads. The trails have not been created for horse-riding, nor cleared of natural hazards. You should ride responsibly for the conditions, and be aware of your surroundings. Avoid riding through treed areas in windy weather as branches and trees can fall suddenly with no warning.
Unless there has been recent rain, there is very little natural water accessible for horses within the Wingello State Forest. Please consider this when planning your ride.
All trails are closed due to bushfire damage until further notice.
Due to Covid-19, the salvage of burnt pine, road repairs and safety checks have all been substantially delayed. Forests NSW anticipate that it will be at least April 2022 before Wingello State Forest will re-open for public recreation. We will update this page with news as it becomes available. Please respect the Forests NSW decision. If they are disrupted in their work or need to police the forest closure, this will only delay the re-opening further.
Southern Highlands Endurance Ride Inc is thrilled that the Bowral Co-op have advised they will support restoration of the horse riding trail network within the forest, donating signposts and covering all signage and installation costs. This work will commence when it is safe to do so – we hope to have the trails marked and ready for when the forest is open again.