Distance: 3.9 km
Average Gradient: 6%
Elevation Gained: 232 meters
Traffic: Very light
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The Cathedral is a popular spot within the Mount Buffalo National Park for bush walking, rock climbing and photography. Thankfully there’s a truly remarkable climb to get to the base of the Cathedral from the plateau of Mount Buffalo. In the heartland of the Mount Buffalo National Park. The Cathedral climb offers some dramatic vegetation changes as you climb higher in altitude. From the Peppermint forests, through tall stands of alpine ash, snow gum woodlands and sub-alpine grasslands. All have characteristics to survive in the extreme and harsh conditions living so high up the mountainside. Whether you’re a nature lover or not. This is a very cool climb!
The climb begins at Lake Cantani and snakes its way up past Dingo Dell. A winter wonderland which during the colder times of the year is very popular among Tobogganists. This is a road which has all the characteristics of a great climb. Great scenery, lots of switchbacks and quite a consistent gradient which makes the climb quite pleasurable. The best part about this climb, even though it is quite short. Is the changes in the terrain which are quite dramatic and stunning. As you near the top to the Cathedral climb. The vegetation thins out and the views open up and you will pass a number of rock formations to either side of the road.
Off into the distance you will see your destination. The Cathedral. This is quite an imposing site. You won’t realize how big it is until you’re sitting in its shadow. The Cathedral climb finishes at the Cathedral picnic ground. If you continue on past the Cathedral there is quite a technical fast speed descent down to the base of the Horn.
Mount Buffalo is one of the Australia’s most popular climbs, and if you choose to do this climb from the base of Mount Buffalo, you will be faced with over 22 km of solid climbing just to get to the base of this climb. Good luck.
The Cathedral Hump (hike)
Distance: 2 km return
Time: 1 hour
Start/Finish: The Cathedral car park
We all love our cycling, but Mount Buffalo offers some of the best hikes you are likely to do. There is a hike from the Cathedral that you should add to your to do list:
This walk is short, sharp and brutal and follows a series of stone steps with switchback after switchback for approximately 500 meters, which will bring you to the base of The Cathedral. Huge boulders will towers overhead as the path veers left and continues up towards the Hump. This is the hill which lies next to the Cathedral and is higher. There is a steep climb up a rock gully which leads to the summit and offers amazing views over the Cathedral and most of the plateau and the Horn, and is a great spot to watch the sun set (bring a torch for the descent if you choose to do this)
Geologist Edward John Dunn described Mount Buffalo as the ‘Garden of the Gods’