Chinamans Point – Clyde River

Wednesday 20 November 2019

Photos by Tom and Gay

Eleven Batemans Bay Bushwalkers who participated in my Clyde River walk last week were very lucky to score mild weather, especially given the week’s awful weather plus bushfires around the State.

The bush was very dry, however the Clyde River provided beautiful serene views along the river as we walked along the shoreline.

The steep hill section at the end of the walk gave everyone that extra bit of exercise for the day!   Overall a rather pleasant walk.

Pat

 

Mitchells Turquoise Ridge

Sunday 17 November 2019

Photos by Tony

Threatening rain did not deter 3 Batemans Bay Bushwalkers and 5 Visitors from venturing out to complete the Mitchells Turquoise Ridge walk on Sunday. It is unusual to have more visitors than members on a walk, and one could be forgiven for thinking that it was the rain that deterred members? However, it’s probably more likely that a lot of members are presently on a club camp at Wilsons Promontory in Victoria!

This walk is a forest walk on tracks off Mitchells Ridge Road taking in an old abandoned turquoise mine and gold diggings. The earlier morning rain had washed the dust from the trees and ferns, the smell of eucalyptus permeated the forest and the air was fresh and clean.

The turquoise mine is pretty much destroyed but some structure could still be seen plus parts of an old shaft. The gold digging was much more impressive and surprised the walkers by its size of about 10 metres long and 4 to 5 metres deep.

After crossing a few hills and bush bashing to find tracks covered over by logging, the final three kilometres of the walk, followed Lawlers Creek to the back of the timber mill at Dalmeny. The visitors thought this flat section was very pretty and shady and a pleasant way to finish the 10km walk, commenting that they are keen to join the Club on future walks.

Gay

Bawley Point to Meroo Lake

Saturday 9 November 2019

Photos by Joan, Carol & Ainslie

The perfect day of sunshine and mild temperature tempted 20 bushwalkers to explore the 7 km easy grade walk from the Bawley Point picnic area through bushland down to North Beach, which impressed the walkers with its untouched and peaceful scenery. Nuggan Head was the next point of interest with extensive views to Pigeon House Mountain and up and down the coastline.

The track then led a little way into bushland as it took the group to view the large Meroo Lake where morning tea was completed with a sighting of black swans in the distance.

This was the turn around point for the return track through Meroo National Park bushland featuring many varieties of native plants behind the beaches. Arriving back at the picnic area, lunch was then enjoyed and thanks went to walk leaders Jill and John for this most pleasant and relaxing walk.

Joan

Skid Ridge Rd to Myrtle Beach

Wednesday 6 November 2019

Photos by Donna & Helen

Our walk today took us through a variety of tracks in Murramarang National Park. The mostly shaded trail, although very dry and strewn with fallen leaves and dead branches, passed under tall Spotted Gums and Iron Barks to the coast. A couple of large fallen trunks provided a slight pause as we negotiated our way over them. Lunch was enjoyed on Myrtle Beach where we had an opportunity to admire the rocks and calm, sparkling sea of many shades of blue. A couple of our party enjoyed the water with a cooling swim. The rest of us sat and wondered if the approaching thunder cell was coming our way. Fortunately it looked as if it was heading out to sea and any rain was falling well to the south of us.

On our return leg of the 12.5 km raggedly figure of eight circuit, we disturbed a medium sized goanna which scrambled up a tall gum on the side of the track, a couple of orchids just forming flower heads were spotted, and we passed the Big Tree. The Big Tree is an icon in the local area and always presents a good photo opportunity for Club walkers.

Our leader Glenn led us all safely back to the cars which were a welcome sight after a number of fairly steep climbs in increasingly warm temperatures. Thank you Glenn.

Mary

Barlings Beach to Burrewarra Point

Thursday 31 October 2019

Photos by Mary, Amanda, Tom, Denise and Ainslie

The bushwalk from Barlings Beach to Guerilla Bay has spectacular views along the coast to Broulee and Mt Gulaga, obscured by a haze of mist, smoke and dust. Our leader Ros, showed how thoughtful she was, with Halloween treats and drink stops, and making herself truly visible with her lolly orange shirt and smiley pumpkin wands on her cap. We spotted a seal far below on a rock by a pebbly beach and a flock of Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos. On Burrewarra Point we had a rest at the 1974 Lighthouse, and peered into the WWII radar station number 17. This lovely walk was all treat and no tricks.

Ainslie

 

Hume and Hovell Track Walk

Sunday 20 October – Friday 26 October 2019

The Hume and Hovell Track, between Yass and Albury, is 426 km long and passes through as good a variety of regional NSW as you would find anywhere – riverside corridors, grazing lands, woodlands, open and closed forest, pine plantations, sub alpine swamps and snow gum highlands.  It has it all.  The track closely follows the original exploration route of 1824 and is well marked with campsites located about a full days walk apart.  More information can be found at https://www.humeandhovelltrack.com.au/

Eight BBBW members sampled some of the best of the Track over six days, five days walking and one rest day.  The Riverina Highlands has had a good winter, with consequent green grasslands, full canopied trees and running rivers, creeks and gullys.  The landscape was picture postcard perfect for us.

We did a series of day walks and picked sections of the track to take advantage of fixed camp sites and to avoid both the Blowering Dam pine plantation sections and the heat which was creeping up the Tumut valley.  Our three drivers moved our camp gear between daily destinations.

The weather was kind, but varied.  Two mornings of frost contrasted with the hottest 32 degree day, but it stayed windless and dry until the last day.  During walking, the conditions were near perfect.

The sections walked were Wee Jasper to Log Bridge, Barrois to Thomas Boyd, Thomas Boyd to the Snowy Mountains Highway, Paddys River Dam to Bussells Mill Site, Paddys River Dam to Buddong Falls, a total distance of 90 km.

On the first day, we walked over a big chunk of the Wee Jasper cave ridden limestone before slugging up a long steep climb through open peppermint and stringybark woodland to Mt Wee Jasper, 1121 m asl.  Unfortunately, the descent wasn’t quite so picturesque – through, and adjacent to, recently clearfelled pine plantation.  But then, we reminded ourselves, the Track samples all types of landuse.

The second day initially followed alongside the interesting Micalong Swamp with its surrounding Snow Gum woodland and resident Banjo/Pobblebonk Frog populations.  We then ambled through lovely Mountain Gum forest which was very pleasant before descending steeply into The Hole.  We descended again, past the Waterfall Creek’s waterfall, and after a short, sharp, shocking, “up and over the hill” climb, we landed exhausted on the banks of the Goobragandra River for camp.

The third day’s walk sampled some of the best of the NSW western slopes woodland and grazing country.  The initial section alongside the River was, at times, like somewhere in Europe with very shady and green beech trees canopied over the track accompanied by the sounds of rushing and gurgling water.  The two suspension bridges also added variety to the challenge.

Further out, through the grazing country, there was green grass everywhere, large spreading red gums and black angus cattle too fat to run away.  Some rustic old farm buildings and the remains of an old water powered sawmill added interest.

On our rest day, after a visit to Blowering Dam and replenishing supplies in Tumut, we visited the impressive Sugar Pine Walk at Laurel Hill, lunched in the idyllic verandah post town of Tumba(bloody)rumba, and established a fixed camp under the snow gums beside the very pretty Paddys River Dam.  It is a very relaxing spot, spoilt only by the ever present feral horses.

On the fourth day, we descended from camp toward the Murray valley on the very steady grade of an old water race, through snow gum, mountain gum, alpine ash, tree ferned gullys and, finally, eurabbie forest, to the site of the old Bussells Mill before calling it a day.

Our final walk descended the other direction toward the Tumut valley.  It traversed snowgum/mountain gum/alpine ash forest, topping the Track’s highest point at 1230 m asl before slowly descending into the Buddong Creek catchment.  We passed old gold diggings, an old cattlemen’s mountain hut and finished our walk at the picturesque Buddong Falls which were putting on quite a show from the winter’s snow melt.

When we arrived back at camp, it stormed for three hours with an impressive display of lightning and thunder but with, thankfully, only light rain.  Nevertheless we received the message from above and decided to call it quits.

On the final day we drove home via the Elliot Way, Kiandra, Cooma and the back road to Braidwood, always a very pleasant drive.

There is more to this Track which we must walk.

Ian

Photos by Ian, Brian and Tom

Billy’s Hut Long Walk

Saturday 26 October 2019

Photos by Helen and Amanda

Mark led five club walkers on a 10km hike to Billy’s Hut the long way. We set off in good weather conditions which was quite a change from the previous day where temperatures had reached 35 and the day was topped off with rain showers at night.

Mother nature had a few surprises for us as the winds progressively increased with some very strong gusts dramatically bending the trees before abating. Fortunately, the temperature stayed in the low 20’s which made the hiking very pleasant.  Down in the gullies next to the pools of water it was a different world with calm conditions.

We stopped at Nelligen on the way home for lunch in the park beside the Clyde River.

Thanks Mark for a great hike.

Rob

 

Bengello Beach and Broulee Forest

Wednesday 23 October 2019

Photos by Karen, Joan and Mary

The weather was perfect, just a light breeze, a calm, sparkling ocean and a low tide that enabled 16 BBBWs the luxury of walking on firm sand. Out on the water, a group of surfboard riders were becalmed, dangling their legs in the sea, whilst further up the beach about 20, mostly jet ski type craft practiced their rescue skills. Walkers were intrigued by the variety of craft weaving their way through the waves, some as large as small tinnies and clearly able to carry several people at a time.

As a fairly novice walk leader, at about 3.5 kilometres along the beach, Denise searched the sand dunes with her eyes, looking for the pink ribbon markers left on the day of the recce. What joy when it was finally spied and a relaxing morning tea was had on the beach, cooled by the breeze, with a view that “you’d pay money for.”

Walkers then took the track through scrub back to the bush trail and proceeded at a leisurely pace through coastal banksia and eucalyptus forest. Some areas had recently been set alight by an arsonist but, fortunately the rural fire brigade had quickly extinguished the blaze.

After a pleasant morning, the group were back in the carpark just prior to lunch.

Denise

 

Three Moruya Silver & Gold Mines

Thursday 17 October 2019

Photos by Rob, Karen, Denise, Amanda and Tom

Sixteen walkers set off on a beautiful spring day to visit three historic gold and silver mines close to the township of Moruya.

Silver and gold was first reported in the area at Candoin Creek in 1839 however it was not made public for fear of sparking a gold rush.  However word did eventually get out in the 1860’s and the first silver mine was opened.  This mine yielded not only silver but also gold to a lesser extent.  The ore was heavily impregnated with sulphides so it was sent overseas for both sale and processing.  In later years the ore was able to be treated at a smelter in South Australia and an unsuccessful attempt was even made to treat it locally in Moruya.  A concrete roaster was built but abandoned soon after, in 1914.  This roaster was our first stop and it was amazing that it was still in a remarkably good condition, having stood there for just over a hundred years.

We then visited another mine site where a ten head stamper, various sheds and a miners cottage were all located in reasonably good condition.  Extensive mullock heaps and large holes reminded us of just what a thriving area it would have been in the day.

Following morning tea at the site, we commenced a lovely walk along Candoin Creek.  Myrtle trees had shed their leaves which provided an attractive carpet to walk upon.  We then left the creek and followed a ridge where we arrived at our third site.  This site contained many artefacts and infrastructure from the mining era.  Of particular interest was a boiler that had been part of HMAS Sydney (WW1) which was decommissioned in 1928 and scrapped the following year.

After spending some time investigating the area it was time to head back down the ridge to the creek where a pretty lunch spot was waiting.  After lunch we followed the creek where further diggings were spotted.  Then it was time to walk up a gully and back to the cars to complete a nice day’s walk.

Donna

Depot to Pebbly Beach (Long Version)

Saturday 12 October 2019

Photos by Karen and Helen

After rain the previous night and with the sun and clouds still deciding who would dominate the day, eight BBBW’s set out from Depot Beach carpark. The route was an 11 kilometre circuit to Pebbly Beach through forest tracks and service roads, returning via coastal rock platforms.

The first kilometre was a steady incline not steep enough to cease conversation or for that matter, observation, as the women in particular were soon pointing to budding wildflowers or small blooms pushing through wet ground and breathing deeply to inhale that “fresh bush” scent that so invigorates bushwalkers.

The track levelled and the pace quickened slightly, but hikers still managed to spy unusual fungi on the underside of several fallen trees and take photos. The birds sang their appreciation of dust free trees with glistening, white trunks and newly formed puddles that offered them a thirst quenching drink.

Clouds won out as the group approached Pebbly Beach and walkers paused to take out wet weather gear from their backpacks. Donna had purchased a purple poncho in Machu Picchu and its practicality was obvious as it soon had her water proof. Walkers took the opportunity to pause under a shelter, hoping that the tide would further recede whilst they took time for lunch.

Recent seas had been high and another delight on this varied walk, was the sound of rolling pebbles as the waves drew back causing a hissing noise. The group stopped and listened, enjoying this unusual phenomenon. Gentle rain was still falling as the cars came into sight at Depot Beach, but it had been a truly varied and interesting walk, not to be forgotten for some time.

A big thank you to Brian.

Denise