The route follows the Stanley River and passes through an interesting geological area known as the Racecourse. There are several river crossings which can make travel difficult in times of high rainfall and during spring snowmelt.
The eastern side of St James Conservation Area can be accessed from a number of points along Tophouse Road.
From Hanmer Springs take Clarence Valley Road over Jacks Pass to connect with Tophouse Road (about 13 km from Hanmer Springs). This road follows the eastern boundary of St James Conservation Area.