Budawangs – Wog Wog to Yadboro

Tuesday 1 – Friday 4 December 2020

Walkers:  Phillip & Erika, Rob, Bronwyn, Barry, Wendy, Lin, Ian.

It seems we do this classic walk across the Budawangs about every four years.  But this time it was different in that almost the whole area was heavily burnt in the 2019-20 bushfires, significantly changing the nature of the walk.

The views were outstanding, the last of the spring flower meadows beautiful, and the walking, free of undergrowth, very pleasant.

It was pleasing to see the wildlife finally returning as the green gradually overpowers the black.  We saw a good variety of insects (flies, ants, butterflies and dragonflies), and even two snakes – white lipped and (suspected) tiger.  The grass trees were flowering prolifically and the insects were loving the nectar.

The only down side to a perfect walk was the heat on the first day and too many pesky flies blown in on the accompanying northwest wind.  Otherwise, the weather was perfect.  The second and third days of cool, low cloud added mysticism to the rocky peaks around us, and the fourth day of clear sunshine was perfect for the views.

Because we took our time, camping at Burrumbeet, Mt Cole and Cooyoyo, we were able to visit many highlights and take some interesting short side trips.  We visited Corang Peak, Corang Arch, the Donjon crevasse, Green Room, Emerald Room, Natural Arch, Eagles Nest, and explored the rocky ramparts of Monolith Valley.

The rock is wonderful.  There is not only a lot of it but it has great character, particularly in Monolith Valley where the pagodas resemble a miniature Bungle Bungle wonderland.

On the last day in perfect weather we climbed The Castle which, for some of us, enabled us to finally knock it off our bucket list.

The photos from Phillip, Rob, Erika, Barry and Ian tell the story.

A big thanks to Miriam and Rudy who assisted greatly with the drop-off and pick-up.

Ian

Point Upright and Depot Beach

Thursday 26 November 2020

Photos courtesy of Tom, Amanda, Karen, Brian, Chris and Gay

What a perfect day to lead the last walk of 2020!  The sky was blue, the sea was a bright turquoise and yes, perhaps it was a little warm, but the walkers were treated to a lovely breeze at the top of Point Upright lookout and again down below as they walked back around the point along the rock platforms.

Due to the low tide being at 1p.m., the walkers left a little later than usual at 10a.m. from Depot Beach.  A nice steady uphill walk through the village up onto the Burrawang track to Point Upright brought out some beads of sweat, but it felt good to be out in the open, enjoying the regeneration of the forest.

The lookout at Point Upright is a good solid structure with wonderful views towards North and South Durras.  The group paused for a few photos then tackled the steep downhill track and steps to North Durras beach to find several swimmers enjoying the crystal clear water.

Time for a coffee break before the Walkers cut through some low scrub endeavouring to get as far along as possible around the Point before having to head down to the rocks.  The tide was still higher than expected and some wave sets coming in washing across the rocks meant we had to scramble over the rocks for some distance before we could venture down to the drier rock platforms.  Some members spotted some fossil mussels (Euridesma) on the rocks but a lot had their head down taking it very carefully as they wound their way over and through the rocks.

But what a treat once we reached the rock platforms. After a few jelly beans to boost our energy and with a nice seabreeze, the group took time to study the cliffs and rocks, lots of small pools and stress fractures filled with starfish and sea urchins, small fish and quite a few jellyfish.

The walkers meandered their way slowly back to Depot Beach enjoying the platforms and the views out to sea, with the waves crashing nearby.  Lunch was enjoyed in a large cliff cavern though some of us weren’t too sure about sitting under those imposing cliffs.

All in all a great day out!

Gay

Cullendulla Boardwalk

Saturday 21 November 2020

Photos courtesy of Gay

A couple of hours were spent walking in the Cullendulla and Surf Beach area today.  Nine walkers met at the temporary car park in Surfside and headed out to Surfside beach where surprisingly there were very few people around.  The highlight of the walk was the Cullendulla Boardwalk where the walkers tried to be quiet and still so that the crabs would come out but alas they were too smart for us and mostly stayed hidden.  It was hard to believe that when the leader, Jill, did the recce that the boardwalk was under water due to a king tide.

From the boardwalk the group headed into the back streets of Surfside and via a roundabout route found themselves at the Lincoln Resort on the highway before turning back towards the beach and discovering a little known track through a reserve and back to the cars.

Thank you Jill for leading this enjoyable morning walk.

Gay

 

 

Ringlands and Wagonga Inlet Circuit Walk

Wednesday 18 November 2020

Photos courtesy of Tom, Chris and John

Twenty-two members enjoyed an Easy/Medium grade walk of 8kms on the Ringlands Circuit walk today.  The walk is very pretty taking in the oyster farms of the Wagonga Inlet with trails often skirting the edge of the water as we headed toward Flying Fox Gully.  Not a cloud in the sky and the water was crystal clear – shame we didn’t have our togs!  Morning tea was enjoyed on the banks of the Inlet and lunch was held on a higher point with a cooler breeze and some bull-ants to keep an eye on.  The diversion off the path down to the Rainforest was well worth it to see the large strangler fig and of course, an opportunity for a group photo.

Thanks Karen for stepping in and leading the group on a very enjoyable bushwalk.

Gay

Candlagan Creek and Mossy Point

Sunday 15 November 2020

Photos courtesy of Mary and Ainslie

Twenty three walkers turned out for the easy grade 6kms walk around Candlagan Creek and Mossy Point on Sunday. It was a glorious day weather wise.

Walkers were rewarded with great views from the Mossy Point headland and there was plenty of time for this big group to chat and catch up while wandering along the river and creek tracks.

Thanks to Lesley for leading the walk.

Durras Forest, Beaches & Rocks

Thursday 12 November 2020

Photos courtesy of Karen, Amanda and Barry

Starting from the Durras Ocean Boat Ramp, this walk begins in the Village, before turning into the forest and by back-tracks emerges at Myrtle Beach. The forest paths involved quite a bit of scrambling across fallen logs, uncleared since the gales earlier in the year, and the gullies were still muddy from recent rains. The group enjoyed a sunny morning break on the grassy bank above Myrtle Beach before turning north along the beaches and rock platforms that make up the coastline.

As we dropped onto the basaltic black sands of Dark Beach our geologically inclined leader waxed enthusiastically over the unique geological features of this area which marks the Southern tip of the Sydney Basin. Indeed, combined with striking coastal scenery, the coastline geology here make this a fascinating day out. A fair amount of rocky scrambling followed until the group reached the “leap of faith” where a dike intrusion has been eroded away leaving the sea foaming beneath the bushwalkers feet. At low tide this is more like a step than a leap – but it is followed around the headland by more interesting geology. In the cliffs opposite Wasp Island are pieces of fossilised wood and further on are signs of humanity:  remains of an ancient metal boiler and iron stakes set in the rock platform where the timber barges of 100 years ago moored to take their cargo on board.

It was a fascinating, varied morning out with a range of interesting forest and coastal scenery. Thanks to Rob for stepping in to lead at short notice. His expertise made it all the more interesting.

Rodney

 

Broulee Bush & Island

Saturday 7 November 2020

Photos courtesy of Bob and Karen

A last minute change of route because of forecast very strong southerly winds, ensured Batemans Bay Bush Walkers still enjoyed their walk at Broulee Island last Saturday.  First the view from the headland before walking around the southern side of the Island first, followed by morning tea on the sheltered side, then up onto the top where a tiny track was followed to the lonely early grave of Elizabeth Malaber.  Along the way we admired flowering native trees, large twisting wooden vines along fallen tree trunks and branches and were quite curious about some abnormal growths on some of the Pittosporum tree trunks.

Back down on the way to the beach Bob’s sharp eyes spotted a very delicate black cicada emerging from its shell on a blade of grass.

Over-all a nice pleasant walk thanks Bob.

Pat

Mogo Monkey Rock

Wednesday 4 November 2020

Photos courtesy of Rob

Nine club walkers explored the bushfire ravaged Mogo State Forest. Being a ‘Betty Richards Walk’ it included lots of bike tracks, old forest roads, creek crossings and hills. Since the fires of early 2020 we have had significant rains including a heavy downpour last week. The creeks were flowing and had encouraging vegetation regrowth.

Navigation was tricky as the bike tracks were often well hidden under bark debris from the spotted gums damaged in the fires and new growth of grasses and Eucalypt seedlings. Thankfully this walk was GPS mapped so we were able to successfully find our way.

Monkey Rock (a granite outcrop with an obvious face) is usually a great place for lunch but the lack of shade due to the burnt trees forced us to head downslope and find some unburnt logs for seats. The recent rains combined with the 30 degree temperatures made for very humid hiking conditions and saw some very weary walkers arrive back at the cars after cutting a few kilometres from the planned walk distance. However it was good to see lots of regrowth in the forest and very noisy birdlife activity.

Rob

Barlings Beach Circuit

Saturday 24 October 2020

Photos courtesy of Helen, Erika and Philip

Meeting at Barlings Beach, thirteen walkers headed inland along Bevian Rd, keen to see how the bush was recovering from the fires, whilst sighting an echidna, a camel, various birds and dodging heavy vehicles en route to Rosedale Beach. The cool ocean breeze was a welcome relief as we wandered along the beaches and rock platforms to Blacks Beach for morning tea and a quick swim.

The sky was beginning to look menacing as we reached Guerrilla Bay and the views on the beautiful cliff top section from Burrewarra Point through to Franks Beach were dramatically grey and punctuated by brief light showers. Wildflowers were still highlighting the path through the banksias as we picked up the pace towards Franks Beach where we decided to skip lunch and finish the walk before the showers turned to rain.

Back at the cars and feeling well exercised by our 15 km hike we had no sooner said our thanks to Brian for a most enjoyable day than the sky began to clear again, briefly, just as forecast!

Chris

 

North Narooma Mines

Sunday 18 October 2020

Photos courtesy of Philip and Erika

The small pocket of state forest adjacent to North Narooma is not an area previously explored by Batemans Bay Bushwalkers.  However, we had heard about the location of some old mine shafts and infrastructure so we went in to take a look on Sunday.  Unfortunately the area has been used as a car dumping ground for many years – we came across at least 6 rusting vehicles, one quite a recent addition.  We were also dismayed to see a high point overlooking the inlet currently being used for dumping rubbish. 

We managed to escape the interfering hand of man by leaving the main tracks and cutting through the bush to the mining area.  This consists of several horizontal shafts, as well as some concrete structures probably used as footings for machinery.  There are also 2 areas of vertical shafts, fenced in to prevent people from falling in.

Finally we walked to Lewis Island, connected to the mainland by a boardwalk, to enjoy the clear waters of Wagonga Inlet.

Karen