This fabulous bushwalk was recommended to me By Adrian Spragg - a leader at 1st Sailors Bay. The icing on the cake was that I was able to re-use most of his paperwork which made the admin work heaps easier.
As usual we met at my at place at 6:00pm and then headed off for dinner at Aldo’s Pizzeria at Richmond before heading off to the Cathedral of Ferns camping ground at Mt Wilson.
We had a little bit of drizzle overnight and we were greated with a cool, damp, misty morning but this was nothing that a good camp brewed Espresso and breakfast couldn’t fix.
After distributing food, tents and other gear, we were finally ready to head off. Well almost. Kim’s Plado wasn’t feeling well, so we had to jump start it. We finally arrived at our destination, parked beside the railway line and watched the trains pass by. Whilst this was going on I went and did a quick recce of the start and was dismayed to discover that the starting point on the map was actually private property that belonged to what appeared to be a tree lopping company. So I gingerly scooted through the property and then dropped down the side to discover a side track skirting around the property which I followed back to the car park.
We finally headed off along the side track and then split the groups into four patrols - two boy patrols, a girl patrol and a parent/leader patrol. Each patrol had to navigate their way to the Wollangambe River and after a quick navigation refresher off they set at 15 minute intervals.
The walk along this first part of the ridge was wonderful with an abundance of wild flowers, including fabulous Waratahs like this one.
The leaders and parents soon caught up to the Patrols and watched from one of the peaks with amusement as they bushbashed their way down the wrong gully! We soon set them straight and after a couple of more navigational errors we arrived at the Wollangambe and had a bite to eat.
We set off again and crossed the Wollangambe slightly upstream over a fallen tree.
Once we got towards the top of the ridge, the track got vague again leading to more bushbashing for while before the Scouts found the track again along the ridgeline.
It wasn’t long before we found the gap in the cliffline and then blindly followed the track down to the river and up the other side which led to nowhere. Of course by this stage we were well used to being off track, so when the Scouts asked if we were heading in the right direction, my response was, “I dunno, you’re navigating”.
Anyway I decided to take a peak at the top of the hill and couldn’t find any useful features so we started to backtrack by which stage Ivan had found the track again and it was only another ten minutes before we found the awesome camp cave.