Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wee Jasper area

I live in a small country New South Wales town called Yass.  Yass is about 60km north west of the Australia's capital city, Canberra, in the Australian Capital Territory.  It takes about an hour to travel from the center of Canberra to the center of Yass.

About 50km or so from Yass is the village of Wee Jasper.  It's not somewhere that we have ever camped but we day trip down there every so often, particularly when there are events on.  Wee Jasper Naturally and science week in Wee Jasper are two of the main events that happen in that part of the world.  There are also Carey's Caves to visit and the pub does a pretty good angus steak!

There are also a number of campsites near Wee Jasper.  While not free - there is a small charge at each site and the amount varies with the facilities.

Our starting point for the tour is Micalong Creek campsite.  Micalong creek has self-composting toilets and an outdoor shower, is alongsied Micalong Creek.

It's well maintained and very tidy.  Of all the campsites near Wee Jasper this would be my pick to stay at as there is a couple of interesting walks along the far side.

There are a couple of swimming holes where the water is clear and was very cold when we were down there.  A little further along are the cascades.  It's a bit of a climb over the rocks to get up there, and in the dry there is not as much of a water flow.


Micalong Creek does get busy during peak holiday periods but it is worth the effort to get to.  GPS -35.188395, 148.687087

Next on the list of places we visited was Swinging Bridge Campsite.  A question was raised about whether there is actually a swinging bridge somewhere nearby.  Answer is:


Other than the bridge, which you need to get to the river bank to see, there are a couple of walks from this campsite through the bush to other campsites.  Worthy of note are the fishing shacks on the river banks.  Owned by locals and passed to heirs usually, they have been a bone of contention in the area for a while.

The campsite is shady but it is quite close to the road.  GPS -35.164269, 148.687166

There are no facilities at this site.

There are two more campsites in the Wee Jasper region and we will visit them in due course, and post some pics and other bits and pieces.

The website for prices and other details is

From Canberra take the Barton Highway to Yass, and there are signs to Wee Jasper.  From Sydney or Melbourne use the Hume Highway to Yass and then follow the signs into Wee Jasper.

The road in from Yass is reasonably well maintained and is mostly bitumen.  There are some high speed gravel/dirt sections between Yass and Wee Jasper.  Once you arrive at the township go to the end of the road and turn left toward Tumut and then follow the signs to your choice of campground.  It is fast dirt all the way to each campground.  It is 2WD accessible.

There are roads through to Tumut and Canberra from Wee Jasper, but they are windy dirt.  The road to Canberra runs through the Brindibella Ranges and is easy in a 4WD.  Slow going, occasionally slippery and a bit unsettling in a 2WD.

There won't be an update this weekend - 19/20 December - we are going camping.

If you have heard of Wollondilly River Station - that's where we are off to.  Give me a couple of days and I'll get a report posted about that one.


  1. Some great and accurate comments about camping in Wee Jasper, but a few things need clearing up. Camping fee is $7.50 per adult per night regardless of which reserve you stay at. Kids aged under 15 can stay for free with adults. There are facilities at all of the reserves, but only one (billy grace I think) has showers. There's less than 2km of dirt between Yass & Wee Jasper. The shacks at Swinging Bridge are not owend by locals but by the Dept of Lands and are leased.

  2. Thanks for the pricing details. Billy Grace has hot showers, but we didn't visit there so it didn't get a mention. Showers at Micalong are cold only. And there are toilets and picnic tables at each site.
    It is worth visiting for the full story on fees and facilities.