FATMAP difficulty grade
The Handlogger's Loop follows the SW Ridge Trail up the the South Summit, then descends a steep switchback to the old handloggers road.
It is an excellent hike or run in all conditions.
The beautiful old growth forest higher up makes for a much prettier approach than the standard route up from Snug Cove.
The route begins near Evergreen park.
There are a variety of start points, all converge onto the SW Ridge and Handlogger's junction.
The trail heading up the ridge winds between granite protrusion, and each turn seems to reveal a totally new coastal environment, from fields of green moss, to swordferns covering the floor.
The immediate sights are so pleasant one doesn't feel the need for vistas.
Mist through the trees even improves the atmosphere.
As the trail gets near the summit it does get a bit muddier.
The South Summit is underwhelming with no views.
The North Summit is a short climb, and a bit more exciting.
From there follow the regular route downwards.
There is a great viewpoint shorlty before the turn off down to the Handlogger's track (first left hand turn, easy to miss).
The descent to the track is quite steep on soft ground.
The track is an old logging road, though it's washed away in many places making for excellent exposed hiking/running.
Follow this gently descending path back to the junction.
From there follow the signs to Bowen Bay.
If it's warm, the bay has excellent swimming.
The route can be done in reverse, but the descent down the SW Ridge would be a little rockier and less pleasant than climbing.