The promise of seeing Rock Orchids blooming in the wild enticed 21 Batemans Bay Bushwalkers to embark on an 11 km hike, starting 3 km west of Misons Road south of Mogo.
The lack of rainfall over the past few months made tracks very dusty and the bush lacked the usual profusion of Spring wild flowers. Our walk leader, Betty led us westward, up steeper and steeper inclines with granite boulders and interesting rocky formations that, at times helped to divert our attention from the physical exertion of our climb. As the track curved south we stopped for morning tea and noticed that the rock orchids at that site had been eaten by wildlife seeking moisture and nutrition. Bird song was ever present on our hike and the calls of Noisy Friarbirds, Golden Whistlers and Pardalote were identified.
Upon reaching the top of the crest our group was rewarded by the sight of Rock Orchids blooming atop of a granite prominence. Many cameras came out of backpacks to capture the sight.
The return journey was mostly down hill and an understorey of Burrawangs gave the bush a lusher appearance.
Karen C introduced the group to a new walk behind Ulladulla along the northern shore of Burrill Lake and through Kings Point. It started in the shady Ulladulla Wildflower Reserve with a break for morning tea beside Burrill Lake. The dry season has not been good for wildflowers, but we spotted flowering wedding bush and several outcrops of blue sun and pink lady finger orchids. High up in a tall blackbutt tree by the water’s edge, keen eyes also spotted a sea eagle’s nest. The photo doesn’t do it justice.
Thanks Karen, it’s always enjoyable wandering through the bush, but is a bonus to see something new and interesting along the way.
With winter blowing a soft retreat, 16 walkers set out for the Bartleys and Punt arms of Durras Lake on a 13 km walk. It was a lovely sunny day and a welcome break from the windy conditions of the last few weeks.
The walk took in parts of the National Park and followed along old working sites in the timber-getting history of the area, at times following the remains of old tram lines used to move timber around the area. Although many of the old tracks are now overgrown with hop bush and wattle, the walkers pushed through for morning tea and lunch alongside the lake on the Punt Arm. The final part of the walk took us through to Beagle Bay, ending with a pretty walk along the coast and back to where we left our cars on the old Benandra Road in South Durras.
What a lovely walk it was. Commencing at Lilli Pilli beach, our happy group of 13 headed north, following the coastline, walking between the houses perched just back from the cliff edge and the edge itself. The views were wonderful. The different shades of blue and green were amazing. It was a very easy walk, following a well worn track, up to Circuit Beach and Grandfather’s Gully and back again.
The paddling bushwalkers braved the weather and squeezed a paddle into a calm period between high wind forecasts. The destination was Cyne Mallowes Creek at high tide. Starting at the little beach next to Nelligen boatramp, paddlers headed north to quickly exit the Clyde River into the creek.
We explored both arms and around the little island, having lunch in a paddock with very dry crispy grass. We knew we had arrived back at the junction with Clyde River when we saw a jetski roaring up and down in front of us. Thankfully it was much quieter in the creek.
20 members of the Bushwalkers headed off along the Moruya River on a perfect Spring Saturday morning. Walking across the bridge along river to the hospital, magnificent views with mirror images in the brilliant blue waters. We headed back through the crowded Riverside Park with the Moruya markets, then onto Ryan’s Creek. A very happy group, ending up at the Waterfront Hotel where we enjoyed a delicious lunch sitting out in the sun.
A great highlight of our walk was when a car pulled up along the walkway and 3 delightful young girls from the Seventh Day Adventist Church approached us with baskets of beautifully decorated, home made cupcakes for the men in our group as a gift to wish them a Happy Fathers Day. This certainly put a smile on all our faces, what a wonderful gesture. A very big thank you to Keira McTernai, Briony Floreani and Tara Watts.
Instead of a bushwalk this week, 30 of us turned up at Malua Bay Bowling Club for lunch in the restaurant followed by an afternoon of Trivia.
Lunch at the Club is always good value with a wide choice of Asian and western meals, lunch specials or a la carte. We then adjourned to the back room to be welcomed by new Social Convenor Joe, Trivia Queen Lyn, Assistant Elizabeth and Scorers Lesley and Bev.
I sat at a table with two of our most long-standing members, Meriel and Grant and two of our newest members Kay and Barry. Great to see several other new members amongst the crowd.
Karen C won the day for her team by earning a bonus 10 points for knowing the latitude and longitude of Batemans Bay (35 degrees south, 150 degrees east).
Thanks to everyone for the jokes, the chocolate and the good natured competition.
Entering the little known Bimberamala National Park
Visitors Tom and Gay on the lunch log with Mark and Rob
Photos by Amanda & Denise
Prior to starting out along the fire trails, the leader Mark read to us the following precis of the mine’s history, supplied by Val: “The Bimberamala Mines were worked between 1890 and 1915 from shafts and adits up to 100 m long. The veins were of various strikes. Approximately 2000 tonnes of ore were raised, and if all of it were crushed, yielded 93.595 kg of gold, average yield 0.046 kg/ tonne.”
After investigating several smaller mines along the way and at exactly 9.98 kms (thanks Rob) into the walk, we arrived at the Bimbermala Mine, at the same time as the drizzle. The idea of sheltering in the mine was short-lived on discovering that its floor was under water. Further exploration of the vicinity revealed numerous decaying remnants of the mining process.
All those who had believed the weather forecast, took the opportunity to don waterproof gear, the rest had to endure increasing dampness as the rain intensified.
Needless to say, the lunch break was a brief affair and the 5.8 km walk back to the cars was achieved in record time, though the conversations didn’t flag.
The bedraggled five members and four visitors thanked Mark for the interesting walk into a fascinating area, before scrambling into the cars for some warmth.
Mark and Rob earned further merit points by safely navigating the, now very slippery, roads to the highway and delivering us back to the coast.
After turning onto Lyons Road, off the Kings Highway, we drove about three kilometres and crossed Currowan Creek at a shallow ford. Just after crossing the creek we parked the cars and our group of nine set off up Lyons Road for a short distance before turning onto an old overgrown track.
The old forest track, which generally followed the meandering course of Lyons Creek, had not been used for many years and was barely visible. It is little more than a distant memory slowly fading into the landscape. We followed the rough, but flat, route of the old track for four kilometres then made our way down to the creek.
We then followed the shallow creek upstream, over smooth rocks with their delicate layered patterns revealed by centuries of water flow. We rock-hopped from one bank to the other as we made our way past the ferns, palms, mosses and logs along the way. There were a few large pools and at one point a series of gently flowing cascades.
After walking about three kilometres up the creek we came to a rugged rock outcrop with a clear pool at the base of a steep cliff. At this point we returned downstream along the way we had come, stopping after some distance for lunch beside the creek. We then left the creek and made our way back up to the old forest track.
We continued for a short section on the old track before turning onto a very steep track and climbing straight uphill for about one kilometre to a clearing on the hilltop. From the clearing we joined Lyons Road and walked three and a half kilometres downhill to where the cars were parked.
When we reached our cars we saw that a vehicle had become bogged whilst attempting to ford Currowan Creek, and was blocking the way. Rob only had a light rope but luckily, doubled over a few times, this was good enough to pull the vehicle out so that we could return to the Kings Highway.