Adventures in Bouddi National Park

Yesterday I went with a mate up to Bouddi National Park on the Central Coast. We did two short hikes, Box Point and Gerrin Point Circuit. The road out to Box Point is unsealed, however, we weren’t expecting a full 4wd track, and proceeded to take a small 2wd car down it – fun! The track out to Box Point itself, despite being short, was quite rugged and combined with lots of smoke from the nearby hazard reduction burns was an interesting walk. The Gerrin Point Circuit on the other-hand was much easier than expected, with the exception of the final climb up from Putty Beach to The Scenic Road which took us up an unmarked track.

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Hacking Ubuntu on a Chromebook

In a few weeks time I’m going to be doing a bit of traveling for work and then a small holiday. As I will be hoping on and off planes and trains, I’m not really keen on taking my primary laptop as it is bulky and not really designed for travel.

After tossing up the pros and cons of tablets, netbooks, and ultrabooks I have bought a Acer C7 Google Chromebook and have managed to get Ubuntu 12.04 running inside a chroot environment. The whole process of getting Ubuntu installed has been much simpler than I was expecting.

For under $300 I now have basically a full lightweight system for travel on which I can watch videos, play music, edit documents, edit photos, and browse the web. While the basic Chrome OS operating system claims all these features, the reality is, it is extremely limited in what it is actually able to do.
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Same Pack and Hat, Eight Years Apart

The photo on the left below was taken while tramping to the Coromandel Pinnacles in November 2005. The photo on the right was taken earlier this week while hiking The Cost Track in Royal National Park. In addition to the same pack, I realised when putting these two photos together that I have the same hat as well.

Hiking The Coast Track

Over the last day and a half, two mates and I hiked the 26km+ Coast Walk from Bundeena to Otford in the Royal National Park. It is the first overnight hike I have completed in three years (last time involved a helicopter rescue). After calling off the walk a few weeks ago due to forecast heavy rain we walked in absolutely perfect conditions, with little wind, sunshine, and the temperature was neither too hot or cold.

The first day involved hiking from Bundeena to Burning Palms, where we stayed the night in a hut, before completing the track through to Otford this morning. Along the way we saw whales, a dolphin, a wallaby, a large skink, herds of wild deer, and a very large red belly black snake. Additionally, we managed to lose the track a number of times and walked for almost two hours in the dark to make it to the hut.

For the first part of the track we walked the 8k from Bundeena to Watamolla this took just under four hours. During the walk along the coast we lost the track a few times but never by more than a few meters. Crossing the stream at Marley beach one of my mates decided to try and throw their pack across the stream, unfortunately they threw it straight into the stream. Luckily, nothing inside the pack got wet. The remainder of the walk from Marley to Wattamolla was spent spotting whales along the coast.

After lunch at Wattamolla we continued onwards towards Garie Beach. We lost the track again heading down the hill into Curracurrang, but eventually saw a route marker in the distance. From Curracurrang to Garie Beach the track became very muddy and this slowed us down in numerous places as we looked for ways around areas of the track that had turned into mini lakes. Just before we got to Garie Beach a large wallaby decided to bounce along the track in front of us. We made it to Garie Beach in two and a half hours, just as the sun was setting.

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Photos: Vivid Sydney 2013

Vivid Sydney 2013 is on at the moment. Each year they expand the number of buildings and things to do, and this year they have included the Harbour Bridge and Darling Harbour in the displays. Last night I started from Milsons Point and walked across the Harbour Bridge to get photos of the city and Opera House lit up.

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Photos: Hiking Wahroonga to Mt Kuring-gai

I spent today hiking 16km from Wahroonga train station to Mt Kuring-gai station via Bobbin Head in the Ku-ring-Gai Chase National Park.

The hike starts out with a 3km walk from the station through the suburbs of Wahroonga to the start of a fire trail. It is always fun walking through an urban area with hiking boots, packs and poles. The first section of the track proper is a fire trail that runs along a ridge for a few kilometers before narrowing and dropping into a track that runs along Cockle Creek through to Bobbin Head. Along this first fire trail we encountered a very small red belly black snake that we initially all stepped over assuming to be a branch. After having lunch at Bobbin Head we then continue on the trails that run alongside Cowan Creek before climbing up to Mt Kuring-gai.

The photos below show some of the highlights of the trip.

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Adventures in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park

This afternoon I went with a mate for an adventure through the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park which is north of Sydney. Below is a selection of photos from the adventure. The afternoon was spent randomly stopping on the sides of roads to take photos, racing down small hiking trails, and a bit of bush whacking. The highlight of the trip was coming across a wallaby.

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