Trip report: beginners hardcore bushwalk

Great north walk: Thornleigh to Mt Kuringai

Date 25th march 2012

Attending: Helen, Cathy, Kosta, Mark, Matthieu, Carlos

The battle plan for this trip went something along the lines of: casual stroll along part of the great north walk, followed by a few beers, some dinner… In reality, the stroll turned into an epic 30km mission, enough to force any fresher to question the fundamental basic operating principles of subw.

Press on regardless was the central theme. And, based on the fact that at least one third of the group were dramatically sleep deprived and suffering from a newly developed fear of crocodiles, this was a reasonable way forward.

Huey had given us the first good weekend in a while, and we quickly left thornleigh station for the track. Following north up to westleigh we stopped to peak at a copper tail lizard that was hiding under a stone. Kosta learnt what a banksia flower looks like (‘It’s the one that looks like a toilet brush right?!’), and we all smashed the various uphills and downhills no worries.

After passing fish ponds, we prepared ourselves for a waist-high wade (as it was about a month ago) but the water was really low and the hopping stones easily visible. Pity about all the rubbish in this area – must be due to all the recent flooding.

After crossing the big iron bridge near Hornsby, we stopped for a well deserved lunch at the top of the hill. But aware of how much ground we still had to cover, we got cracking again.

Galston Gorge was the next interesting feature with a whole flock of feral chickens wandering nearby (dinner anyone?!). Then came the long creek walk to crosslands….the one that never ends! After what felt like several hours, the flats of crosslands appeared and there was an extremely audible sigh of relief from the back of the group.

We got a fire going and made everyone some tea. Then hit the track again for another 6km uphill to mt kuringai station. Then onto the extremely classy Epping hotel for dinner and beers.

All in all we covered just short of 30km – a phenomenal effort for freshers.

Thanks to everyone for coming – awesome trip!