The biodiversity on Mount Canobolas is being threatened by the spread of invasive weeds and wild animals with urgent action needed.
That's the view of Orange mayor Reg Kidd who said funding was also needed to repair and re-open walking tracks and improve facilities including car parks.
However, the National Parks and Wildlife Service says it has undertaken maintenance, repair and upgrading work plus weed spraying on the mountain.
Cr Kidd said he met NPWS officers on site on Monday to show them the extent of the work needed.
"I [wanted] to show them the damage that is happening on the mountain," he said.
"Blackberries there are two and three stories high in some places," he said.
"It is quite dramatic. It will decrease the biodiversity on the mountain."
He said he expected the state Environment minister Matt Kean would visit Mount Canobolas in July.
Insufficient resources were put into the mountain post the fires.Cr Reg Kidd, Orange mayor
Cr Kidd said the Federal Falls walking track needed repairing as it was in a poor condition in some places.
The Hopetoun Falls path is closed while others were damaged in the 2018 bushfire on the mountain.
"Some of the walks are disgraceful," he said.
"Insufficient resources were put into the mountain post the fires, which would have been the ideal time to manage the invasive weeds and animals."
Cr Kidd said the NPWS needed to do more work on the mountain.
He said the mountain had some top walks, but many people did not know about them, and instead walked in the Blue Mountains.
"I would say 99 per cent of Orange wouldn't even know about some of the walks," he said.
Experienced bushwalker Nick Handbury from Victoria walked the Federal Falls track on Monday.
Mr Handbury said while the track was slippery and missing steps in some areas it was a "pretty decent" path.
He said there was need for more room at the falls for people to sit. "There's all blackberries and rocks there," he said.
A NPWS spokeswoman said since the fire $90,000 in works had been undertaken to repair and rebuild walking tracks including earthworks, timber steps, signage, bollards, bridge replacement, and dangerous tree clearing.
She said storm-damaged Hopetoun Falls track has been closed as outlined in the Mount Canobolas Plan of Management.
"The upgrade of 400 metres of track to the base of Federal Falls is the next scheduled works. Repairs to this track will include replacement of more than 100 timber steps and drains and will occur next financial year," she said.
She said all tracks damaged in the fire had been repaired.
The NPWS had also spent $60,000 on weed spraying over more than 150 hectares of the site as it was a priority for staff.
"Aerial spraying was concentrated on difficult to reach areas on Towac Peak and below The Walls Lookout. Ground spraying concentrated on the visitor nodes, vehicle tracks and walking tracks," she said.
She said the NPWS had also undertaken a pig trapping program in autumn and reduced the numbers.
HAVE YOUR SAY
- Send us a letter to the editor using the form below ...