Goofy Smiles and Slack Stairs

Yesterday I went with two friends to Wentworth Falls and the Valley of the Waters in the Blue Mountains. It was near freezing and the winds were below freezing, but it was a beautiful day. 

Starting from the conservation hut we began on the short cut track, and cut through to breakfast point lookout. From there through to Wentworth Falls and down, down and down the slack stairs to Wentworth Pass, then back up through the Valley of the Waters. It took us 3 hours 45 minutes. This is the first solid hike I’ve done in quite a while and with the massive climb out of the valley my legs are so sore this morning.

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Tramping in Karekare

While visiting Auckland over the ANZAC day weekend, I went tramping at Karekare with some friends. It was a beautiful walk, on a beautiful day, through the beautiful wild west coast of Auckland.

We started from Watchman Road and walked up Ahu Ahu Track before returning via Comans Track and cutting through to Karekare Beach. 

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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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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: 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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