Friday, 21 November 2008

Saturday 15 & Sunday 16 November 2008 - Blue Mountains

It was raining when we woke, so we didn't rush out of bed, but packed up and had breakfast in time to leave at 10am. The only bad point was that we washed the underneath of the Hilux and got severely told off by the park owner – apparently the whole of Australia is on really severe water restrictions and the washing of cars is prohibited! She said there were signs but we couldn't see any....and she had been sprinkling the lawn the night before....

The next part of our journey was along the Putty Road, which runs between Wollemi National Park and Yengo National Park – there were some brilliant sandstone rocks along here. Morning tea was beside to Colo River at Colo. This was a pretty place with deep clear water, and a nearby caravan park. Our first real views from the Blue Mountains were at lunch, which was at a lookout at the top of the range overlooking Castlereagh. At Springwood we found, with a fair bit of difficulty, Lawson Lookout, which was, unfortunately quite overgrown, and with not much to see. As we drove along we found The Prime Ministers' Corridor of Oaks (all PMs since Federation have planted one), and Sir Henry Parkes grave at Faulconbridge.

 At Wentworth Falls we were disappointed to find the Falls Reserve closed, so were not able to see the falls, so continued around to Valley of the Waters. Here we walked down to Queen Victoria Lookout and found sheer orange cliffs shrouded in misty clouds. At the top was a kiosk, and a friendly waitress told me about a free camping spot at Ingar, about 10km out of town, along a gravel road.

Being Saturday night we are slightly concerned about local drunks, but the area is quite pretty, with a little waterfall into a manmade waterhole. The only thing I really need to mention is the flies....we have had swarms of them at every stop since hitting NSW, and here they are the worst.

Sunday morning and we had a bit of a sleep in, then walked up and around the top of the rock and falls, to the swampy areas draining into the creek. We found some very nice small ferny falls, then crossed the creek and scrambled back down the right and side towards the campsite. It was then time for a chilly swim (also try and wash off some of the flies), and I discovered that my sarong had another use, draped over my head to keep the flies off my face while I enjoyed my coffee and biscuit for morning tea. In the afternoon we went for another walk, this time down the creek to where it joined another creek in a gorge.

There was a bit of a track initially, but it soon petered out and we were pushing through dense scrub. The views, once there, were spectacular, as we were perched on a huge rock at the top looking down. We then crossed the creek, and went around further, and higher up, to look directly down the gorge. I disturbed a small brown snake, but was not quick enough to get a photo. We made our way back to the campsite, and spent most of the night as the sole inhabitants.  

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