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Tag Archives | Bushwalking in Sydney

The Bush Club

Hidden Sydney – Balmain, Monday 18 July 2022, Col Prentice and Trevor McAlister

A total of 25 Bush Club participants discovered Hidden Sydney while walking from Circular Quay to Circular Quay via Balmain and the ferry. Participants benefited from the combined expertise of two experienced leaders/historians while walking around this most interesting of Sydney’s suburbs. Col Prentice lead the morning session and Trevor McAlister lead after lunch.

Our walk was mostly on pavement and explored places in Balmain that we probably hadn’t been to before while alerting us to traces of history that still remain visible today. There was a brief commentary and plenty of opportunity to stroll and reflect on Sydney’s past.

Highlights of the walk included a widows’ walk, a tram drivers’ dunny, a policeman’s out-house, a house of a former NSW Premier (he sired 17 children and married at 80; can you guess who?), a cross harbour tunnel built in 1924, a place celebrated for the first game of Rugby League played, a spectacularly fine day, a sea voyage, a bus ride and a happy, outgoing and generous group of people. All this and more could have been yours if you had taken the opportunity to join us. And remember, twelve panes of glass equals one Georgian cottage and regular exercise equals longevity. We all look forward to seeing you next time!

Our August Club: The Bush Club

The Bush Club started on 19th September 1939, mainly as a result of the initiative of Marie Byles and Paddy Pallin. Marie was concerned that the rather rigorous tests to obtain entry to bush walking clubs existing at the time excluded genuine lovers of the bush who were unwilling or unable to pack walk and camp out overnight. Marie believed that the essential qualifications for members should be a genuine love of the bush, a desire to protect it and a willingness to extend the hand of friendship to other bushwalkers.

Paddy had similar motivation in joining with Marie to form the club. He hoped the club would comprise walkers of moderate ability who would not be forced to indulge in camping if they had no wish to do so. Paddy was also strongly of the view that if people became bushwalkers they would also become lovers of the bush and would join the ranks of the conservationists seeking its protection. These thoughts remain the main aim of the Bush Club.

Today The Bush Club organises fun activities in the outdoors. From easy strolls to the adrenaline tough walks; from lakes to mountains; and from the city to the magical bush. The Club believes that getting outdoors and enjoying the wonderful bush around us is a great boost for the body and soul.

Joining The Bush Club is a great way to meet new people and make great friends. Club members are a diverse and friendly bunch who share experiences, learn new things and help each other along the way.

 

Hill View Bushwalkers

A wander in Hornsby, Normanhurst, Waitara & Wahroonga, 8 July 2022, Barbara R

After a week of flooding rain, necessitating the cancellation of the three planned walks for July 8th, a huge mob (41) of Hill View Bushwalkers turned up at Hornsby Station to enjoy an urban walk in brilliant sunshine.

After a longer briefing than usual, which included some history of the area, we headed west past the murals in Dural Lane and on to Frederick Street where we saw the hidden away but impressive California bungalow house & large garden of Leo & Florence Cotton.

Leo Cotton was a highly regarded geologist who became Professor of Geology at Sydney University after the retirement of his mentor & friend Sir Tannatt William Edgeworth David, also a Hornsby resident. Both men went to Antarctica in 1907-8 with Mawson & Shackleton. Leo’s brother Max (also a scholar) bought part of the Cotton property in 1917 to develop Lisgar Gardens. Florence Cotton Reserve (opposite the Frederick St house) is named after Leo’s wife who died in 1930 after only twenty years of marriage.

We crossed Waitara Creek on a bridge near Carcoola Crescent & soon found a hidden pathway & steps through bushland to the crossing of a tributary creek & ascent to a pleasant morning tea spot behind Normanhurst Scout Hall & overlooking the valley.

We realised that was enough flirtation with soggy bushland for the day! Later, a foot track & path were followed from Dartford Road on the southern side of the railway line to Normanhurst Station & Edwards Road from where we walked up quiet Russell Avenue to the source of Waitara Creek & to Pennant Hills Road. Soon another hidden lane off the Pacific Highway was followed to Anulla Place Reserve from where we made our way to & through bushland behind The Grange & through this 1980s Retirement Village to Waitara Station.

At this stage we had walked over 9kms so twelve people decided they’d enjoyed enough exercise for the day & caught a train to their various destinations. Those who had their sights set on lunch in Wahroonga Park, followed the highway SE to Carden Avenue then a path that follows the railway to a footbridge over the M1, on to Warwilla Avenue & the pedestrian rail overpass to our lunch destination. Nine stalwarts stayed for excellent coffee at the Coonanbarra Cafe opposite the park.

On the approximately 13km walk we only (temporarily & briefly) lost three people! Not bad considering the crowd. 😂 Lessons were learnt… & the abandoned were gracious… The usual HVB camaraderie reached a new level after the week of watery isolation and a great time was had by all.

Leaders: Barbara R & Steve

Walkers: Helen A, Nick B, Barbara C, Susan, Rhondda, Ann D, Tim, Elaine, Michael, Jane, John G, Ros G, Christine G, Carol, Celia, Cherry, Kas, Chris McA, Bill McD, Lydia, John M, Hazel, Margaret P, Wendy P, Pragati, David R, Anne R, Christine S, John S, Jenny S, Nick S, Sue S, Lyn, Cleona, Louis, Don W as well as visiting walkers Rosemary Wade (becoming our newest member), Irene Soon & Cheong Lai

Thanks to Nick B for being tail end Charlie.

Our thanks to Barbara R for planning the route and for many hours of historical research.

Our July Club: Hill View Bushwalkers

Hill View Bushwalkers (HVB) has Friday walks from mid-February to mid-November. HVB began in a small way in the early 1970s, growing gradually and retaining a quite informal structure. The spirit of friendship and care that was nurtured in those early years has been maintained, and it is rewarding to be associated with this group.

We are an incorporated group affiliated with Bushwalking NSW. We have walks at three levels of activity led by members who volunteer to lead walks that appeal to them.

The Plus walking group usually has a walk ranging from 14 to 20 kilometres, with substantial ascents and descents though the distance may be less in difficult terrain.

The Regular walking group will usually walk between 9 and 13 kilometres, with less vigorous climbs.

A third group, the EZY walking group, is for those who now find the first two types of walk a bit difficult and wish to walk at a slower pace, with walks of up to 8 kilometres. These walks are currently held fortnightly.

We tend to have a fairly mature membership that includes many part-time workers and retired people.

A weekend away is occasionally arranged to a place where there is low-cost accommodation and good day walks, such as the Snowy Mountains or NSW South Coast.

Members have two six-month programs each year, providing a weekly walk from mid February until mid November.

Development of each program starts with a subcommittee preparing a list of proposed walks. This is then circulated to members, who indicate which walks they are prepared to lead (two leaders to each walk). When all the gaps are filled the program is finalised and published. Walks are all within reach of a one day trip from the meeting point in Turramurra, enabling us to walk in the Blue Mountains, the Central Coast and Royal National Park areas as well as in Sydney.

The number of participants is not limited (unless by COVID restrictions) and leaders make arrangements to ensure all walkers are included.

Every walk has 2 First Aiders nominated. First Aid training is encouraged by a substantial subsidy towards the cost.

The leaders walk the track shortly before leading a group in order to ensure the conditions are suitable.

If the advertised walk needs to be modified, or leaders judge that participants need more information, then a WALKS ADVISORY is issued.

We usually drive with car pooling, but where possible we use public transport.

We are COVID safe. Our program and procedure is modified in response to COVID restrictions as appropriate.

Sydney Bush Walkers

A Week of Walks, Kosciuszko National Park, Christmas/New Year 2021/22, Sydney Bush Walkers, Report by John Kennett, Photos by John Pozniak

Between Christmas and New Year 2021/22 myself and thirty other members of Sydney Bush Walkers (SBW) travelled, walked and gathered on the trails and in the ski-lodges of beautiful Kosciuszko National Park.

Every day we embarked on a different walk and were rewarded with the sight of brilliant blue skies, beautiful weather and voluminous wildflowers. Among the fantastic locations we visited were the Iconic Trails, Mt Twynham, Ramshead, Dead Horse Gap, Guthega, Mt Anton and Mt Tate.

To cap off a successful week our visit concluded with 2022 New Year’s Eve celebrations which were thoroughly enjoyed by all.

Our March Club: Sydney Bush Walkers

Our club of the month, Sydney Bush Walkers is one of Australia’s largest and oldest Bushwalking Clubs. SBW was founded in 1927 and has a membership of around 850.

The club offers challenging day and multi-day walks including extended 12 day (or more) trips.  Canyoning is a very popular club activity in the warmer months.

SBW volunteer trip leaders are experienced walkers who aim to maximise members enjoyment of the outdoors while also ensuring the safety of all walkers. While SBW leaders foster group co-operation participants are also expected to be self-sufficient to ensure that all members cope with walk conditions and challenges that arise.

While the Sydney Bushies provide a range of bush experiences, they also offer a great social network of like minded, outdoorsy types. A SBW membership provides a unique opportunity for bush lovers to develop skills, increase confidence and meet new like-minded friends!

The club holds monthly information nights for people who are considering joining (book here). For more information visit the SBW website or Facebook Page.

 

 

Southern Highlands Bushwalkers

Mount Jellore, Nattai National Park, Southern Highlands Bushwalkers

A recent walk that Southern Highlands Bushwalkers managed to slot between various lockdowns was a hike up Mt Jellore in Nattai National Park. It had been couple of years since the Club had been on the Mount Jellore Walk as it has only recently re-opened after the bushfires.

There is a short walk to a rocky outcrop where you get the first view of the mountain, then a steep drop to a creek, followed by a steep walk up to the fire trail that leads to the base of Mt Jellore. From there it is a zig zag track up to the summit. There is now a lot of waist high regrowth. The trig at the top had survived the fires and from the peak you can see Sydney on a clear day. We took the alternative route back to the start which also involved a drop down to a creek followed by a climb back out.

Nattai NP offers beautiful wilderness and rugged walking experiences. The park is conveniently located close to several towns and features spectacular scenery and landscapes including sandstone cliffs, rainforests and woodlands. Walks in Nattai NP include Couridjah Corridor, Mount Jellore, Starlight’s or Nattai River.

Our January Club: Southern Highlands Bushwalkers

Southern Highlands Bushwalkers is an outdoor activities club which develops friendships through exploring natural wilderness and National Parks. The Club endeavours to plan activities to suit the needs of both individuals and families. Club activities range from short day walks to overnight backpacking hikes and car camp out weekends. However, other special activities may also be included in the Club’s programme.

The Club was formed in 1990 as the Highland Adventurers then underwent a name change to become the Southern Highlands Bushwalkers (Inc) in 1994. Since inception, membership has grown to about 60 and the members hail from as far afield as Palm Beach in the north to Goulburn in the south.

Southern Highlands Bushwalkers holds activities in the Mittagong, Bowral, Berrima area of the Southern Highlands of New South Wales. This area has a great diversity of flora and fauna and access to many national parks and forested areas. Most of the local area is undulating to steep, easy walks are very few and a reasonable standard of fitness is required.

The worn Sydney sandstone of the area offers some many interesting and beautiful windblown features with views from ridges into valleys, creeks and gullies. These offer glimpses of lush cool rain forest, eroded sculptured landscapes and stunning views down the valleys formed by the rivers such as the Nattai.

The club offers mostly day walks from moderately easy to strenuous with a range of overnight backpacks or car camps and the occasional trips to more distant destinations. Off track walking may be through thick and difficult vegetation which requires experience and good navigation skills. The Club also does coastal walks, mainly in the Illawarra as well as some on Sydney Harbour.

 

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Great West Walk extended from Penrith to Katoomba

In great news for bushwalkers – the Great West Walk has been extended from Penrith to Katoomba!

The Walking Volunteers have loaded the walking route onto their Sydney Walking Tracks map and Great West Walk. If you have downloaded either of these maps onto your PS, smartphone or tablet they will be automatically updated to include an additional 150 kilometres of walking routes including the 87 kilometres of the main route.

The additional routes encompass a wide variety of walking conditions from easy station-to-station village walks to the more demanding Woodford-Hazelbrook section. The loops and links include diversions to historical sites like the 1892 Cutting, the Tunnel Creek Track and the iconic St Helena Track/Oaks Fire Trail Hike which is only suitable for experienced bushwalkers.

Cutting on the Top Road

… a funicular railway down to the 1913 rail route along Glenbrook Gorge

The St Helena Ridge Track runs through a narrow defiles …

Pool of Siloam is still …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As you would expect, the views in the Upper Blue Mountains are stunning but some of the lesser-known routes in the Lower Mountains and Mid-Mountains are just as astonishing. The main route runs past old inns, gatekeepers’ cottages, mountain cottages, intriguing ruins and a haunting cave site; along old railway cuttings and Cox’s original road; visits spectacular natural sites like Kings Cave, Leuralla Amphitheatre Sublime Point and Echo Point; passes man-made memorials at Macquarie’s Springwood Camp, Caleys Repulse, Honour Avenue, Coronation Park, and the haunting beauty of the Gully Walk.

Frederica Falls on Empire Pass

Western end of Mt Solitary from Prince Henry Cliff Walk below Sublime Point Reserve

… you look at it

 

The Walking Volunteers want to thank the Gundungurra ILUA Committee, Blue Mountains National Park and Blue Mountains City Council for allowing them to put this extension on their maps and providing vital information on temporary track closures between Gordon Falls and Echo Point, which are all marked on the maps with alternate routes. As these tracks are re-opened the Walking Volunteers will change their maps and these will be automatically updated.

All Nations Bushwalkers – Little Digger and Two Creeks Track Ramble

LITTLE DIGGER AND TWO CREEKS TRACK RAMBLE, 21 February 2021, Walk Report by Dee McCallum, All Nations Bushwalkers

Parts of this track were known to me but not all, so I was pleased Leah had put this walk on. We met at Roseville Station where several of the group started with a morning coffee, then headed off through the delightful Roseville streets with many fine Federation houses, beautifully renovated with lovely gardens. We got to our first stretch of bush at Little Digger Track, which was not so straight forward but we picked our way alongside houses and past the creek. After a short detour across the wrong bridge we came back onto the main track and were met by our wet weather friends the leeches! We eventually came out onto the fabulous Middle harbour track – easy walking with view through trees to the water. There is plenty of history in the area and lots of informative signs. After passing under Roseville Bridge, we stopped for morning tea at the picnic tables near Echo Point. It was good to be under shade as temperatures were rising!

We then backtracked along Middle Harbour before joining the Two Creeks track. Parts of the track were quite exposed, so we were getting hot and just in time we had our lunch break under the shade of the trees. More friendly leeches about, they seemed to be everywhere! The track continued along Middle Harbour with lovely water views.

Shortly after lunch, we got to the most attractive part of the track, well shaded with beautiful trees and overhangs.

We then had an exciting detour through the tunnel at Gordon Creek. This would be impassable in rain but the water level was fine. Luckily there was a handrail to guide us! After exiting, a last uphill track before getting back to the road at Lindfield Station where we all dashed off after a hot but enjoyable day. On the walk, ably lead by Leah, were Dee, Francoise, Linda, Steve, Len, Tricia, Helen, Bryan, Richard, Molly, Connie, Geraldine, Elaine and Daniel.

Our Club for April 2021 is All Nations Bushwalkers

Come and explore the wonderful Australian bush with All Nations Bushwalkers. The Club visits beautiful national parks and wilderness areas around Sydney and further afield and has a graded series of walks, bike rides and water-based activities.

Most activities involve bushwalking in national parks within 100km of Sydney, including Blue Mountains, Ku-ring-gai Chase, Royal, Wollemi, Bouddi, Brisbane Waters, Dharug, Marramarra and Sydney Harbour national parks, or the parks and reserves of the NSW Southern Highlands and Illawarra regions.

All Nations Bushwalkers activities suit a wide range of fitness and experience levels. Most activities are day walks, ranging from easy to rather hard. There are also overnight camping trips and longer expeditions to destinations across Australia – bushwalking by day, enjoying the companionship of the campfire gathering at night! Club members also organise social activities, such as restaurant nights, cinema and art gallery visits, Christmas parties and various special outings.

Getting to club activities is easy – they generally meet at a train station and then car pool to the walking track. You won’t get lost and don’t need your own transport! Club members are men and women of all ages and nationalities from across the Sydney area.  You are welcome try a bushwalk walk first – choose a walk then contact the organiser for details. Visitors can try one walk for free before they’re expected to join. Membership starts from only $30 a year (for 3 years). Learn more