Blue Mountains Visitor Information Centre Located at Echo Point, they have many facilities and services including a free accommodation, tours and attractions booking service, bushwalking guides, maps and books. They even offer (as a free loan) a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) for bushwalkers who wish to enter the wilds.
Bush Walking Safety
If you are bushwalking, you should prepare for the possibility of getting lost in the bush. People get lost regularly, it gets very cold overnight and visitors and mountain locals have died when they have lost the trail and become disoriented. Personal Locator Beacons (PLB’s) are available free of charge from the Katoomba Police and the Visitor Centre. Let someone know your route, and when you will be back. You cannot rely on having mobile phone reception. A GPS is a good idea but a PLB is the best way to send out a signal for help. Remember to take plenty of water and wear appropriate hiking clothes, including rain jackets and sturdy footwear.
The main natural disasters to afflict the area are bushfires and severe storms. In recent years the lower mountains have been subjected to a series of bushfires which have caused great loss of property, but thankfully relatively little loss of life. The upper mountains had not had a major fire for some decades until December 2002 and then November 2006 when an extensive blaze in the Grose Valley threatened several communities, such as Bell and Blackheath. This latest fire burned for almost a month but was extinguished without loss of human life or property. A program of Winter burning seems to have been quite successful in reducing fires in the upper mountains but even so - be wary of the potential, be very careful with your own campfires, cigarette butts etc., and have a bushfire plan. To organise a plan, ask at a Visitor Centre or at your accommodation.