Gosangs Tunnel, Beecroft Peninsula NSW

Gosangs Tunnel is located at Beecroft Peninsula, its an easy walk of about 4km each way. From the car park walk across the bridge along the track to the information board, there is a map here of the walk and many other walks in the area, its a good idea to take a photo of the map to refer back to if needed.

From the information board follow the signs to Mermaid Inlet, which is on the Coomies Walk. If you follow these signs you can’t go wrong. The walk took us about 30 minutes to cover the 4km, we soon found ourselves at a sign for Mermaids Inlet which is straight ahead and Gosangs Tunnel which is to the left. From the sign its about 20 meters to the caves entrance, you’ll have to climb down a few rocks and start your crawl through the tunnel until you reach the other end where you can stand up and enjoy the stunning coastline and ocean view.  There is no safety barrier so be-careful with your footing.

The area is also dog friendly, as long as they are on a leash.

Google maphere

 

 

Bomaderry Creek Bushlands Walk, NSW

This is beautiful area nestled just off the highway in Bomaderry, exit onto , about 500 metres down the road just past the squash courts you will see the entrance into the park . There are a number of walks throughout the reserve, from short easy strolls  to a bit more challenging loop track. The area offers beautiful wildflowers, pockets of rainforest, sandstone cliffs lining the creek and a river crossing, it’s definitely a beautiful area. You could spend an hour here or pack a lunch and spend the  whole day exploring this surreal area. There is a picnic area with BBQ’s, picnic shelters and tables, toilets and plenty of flat grass area.

Dogs are permitted but need to be kept on leash. We decided to explore the River Oak Crossing Track a three hour walk following the winding river, walking through the rain forest, cliffs and rock formations, a small river crossing then returning along the river on the other side back to picnic area. The walk is amazing, every corner offers a new picture. This walk would be for moderate fitness due to steep stairs and a few areas where you need to climb a few rocks along the track, also a ladder climb over a huge rock. We really enjoyed this walk, the area has a peaceful feeling, and the scenery is amazing.

Map and More Information here

Location –

Google Map – Here

GPS Coordinates   -34.845265, 150.591996

Sculptures in the Scrub Walk

img_20161010_154508Timallallie National Park (near Pilliga) hosts the award winning project of Sculptures in the Scrub. A beautiful easy walk through bushland, where local Aboriginal people and their elders have created pieces of art work scattered along the trail to provide information on local artist and the aboriginal culture.

img_20161011_111332Beginning the walk the trail is lined with beautiful bush flowers, a typical dry Australian bush land. The walk follows the top of the cliffs displaying amazing art pieces from local aboriginal people. Taking our time to explore these we continue down into the beautiful Dandry Gorge.

The walk is an approximate 3km loop.  As we wondered down hill into the Gorge the landscape changes into a lush area of green valley, displaying the amazing cliff faces following a small stream. The walk starts and finishes at the picnic area. There is toilets, picnic area and a camp area. Check with National Parks or the local tourist information centers at Coonabarabran or Baradine before entering park for updates on road conditions. The area is very remote and road conditions can change dramatically with wet condition

National Park web site – Here

Location –

Google Map – Here

Camp Ground – Here

 

Sandstone Caves of Pilliga National Park, NSW

20161002_114417The sandstone caves are not sign posted, as requested by the Aboriginal Elders, but it is easy to find. From Coonabarabran head north along the Newell Highway, drive approx 35 km and on your right you will see a dirt road called Yaminba Trail, follow it to you”ll see a carpark on the right. Contacting the Aboriginal Discovery Centre in Baradine or Coonabarabran information center for help with directions and road conditions.

The walk is an easy 2km loop track, Australian bush flowers and huge Xanthorrhoea australis (Grass tree/black boys) are scatted through the bush and following the path along to the caves. The caves are breathtaking, there are a series of cathedral caves and overhangs. High cliffs of sandstone in their natural formations the colours and patterns leave you staring in amazement.

The caves themselves are large open areas, you are able to enter to look around, keeping in mind this is aboriginal sacred land. From here looking out from the caves the veiw of the surrounding landscape and plains is amazing. A few of the caves have been  fenced off to protect the aboriginal rubbings, which are large rocks they used to sharpen their weapons and other rock art and engravings

Unfortunately our modern graffiti artist have no respect for this part of Australian history. The gated areas have gaps large enough to still get a few great pictures. This walk is a must see if in the Pilliga area, we spent hours wandering around in amazement of this natural beauty. The sandstone caves also have a picnic area and toilets, it was very hot and dry, so remember the sunscreen, water, insect repellent and your camera.

National Park web site – Here

Google Map – Here

GPS Coordinates -31.011362, 149.416144

 

Trekking to Maddens Plains Falls N.S.W

imag2029Heading north to Helensburgh to the Royal National park (Dharawal Nature Reserve) when driving take the Old Princes Highway south from Helensburgh, turn right onto Darkes Forest Road and continue along for 2.5km to Maddens Falls car park. The car park is located on the southern side of the road opposite the Apple Shack Glenburnie Orchard, 259 Darkes Rd. From the car park follow the signs for 750m along the walking track to Maddens Falls. This walk is easy and takes you straight to the waterfall. Walk along the service track, it branches off to the right along a gravel road. Some of the track is raised board walk. The walk is about a 15 min, but we took a few short detours along the way, as the river runs parallel with the track, there are small tracks which lead to river along the way.

imag2061The waterfall is beautiful with a viewing platform to take pictures. We again detoured off track to see if we could get a better view of falls but large trees, huge rocks and boulders seem to get in the way of the waterfall. There are lots of small ponds above falls with frogs, lots of bird life, beautiful native flowers and plants are everywhere along the track. This is a really easy walk. The sign at the car park also suggests other longer walks within the Dharawal Nature Reserve. Also popular for mountain bikes. This area was so quiet and going mid week we didn’t see anyone at all which was really nice for a change.

Google Maps- HERE

 

Exploring Helensburgh Tunnels N.S.W

2174Driving towards Helensburgh, from either direction on the M1 freeway to Helensburgh, Exit onto the Old Princes Highway, at the roundabout take first exit onto Parkes Street and follow for approx 3.2 km then turn right onto Old Farm Rd.  Parking is available at the railway car park. If catching the train get to Helensburgh railway station, the tunnels are a few meters away.

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The original railway route to the south coast closed in 1915. The abandoned tunnel is approx 80 meters in length with open gates at both ends. Entering the tunnel we felt an eerie feeling, cold and dark, due to the rain. The ground was muddy with large puddles at the entrance. As we walked through the tunnel we noticed graffiti everywhere, covering all the walls it was unfortunately as it spoilt the atmosphere of the tunnel.  Approaching the opened gates at the end it reminded me of an enchanted garden, over grown with vines and weeds, it looked beautiful. Walking across the road is another tunnel called the Metropolitan, this is signed with an information board of history about the railway track. Also an old demolished platform was just recognizable on the right with a cottage behind. Unfortunately because of heavy rain this tunnel was flooded so we couldn’t enter, but the tunnel is approx 600 meters has been blocked at the other end, the tunnel has glow worms inside and a history of being haunted.

Location –

Google maps – HERE

Trekking to Winifred Falls N.S.W

img_8336Entering the Royal National Park from Loftus, (Sydney) drive along Farnell Ave to Audley river crossing, the road merges into Sir Bertram Stevens Drive continue for 2.5km and turn left onto Warumbi Rd. Approx 400 meters along, keep an eye on a sign to your right, (Winnifred Falls Fire Trail) there is also a locked gate at entry of walk. Parking on side of road. The beginning of the walk is the sign, stating 1km (2km return). The track itself is a fire trail and easy to walk with some parts steep with loose rocks, we had attempted this walk after a large rainfall so the track was muddy and slippery, but I’m sure on a dry day the track would be easy.

img_8386Arriving at the bottom of trail are the falls, and an amazing swimming hole.At the left of the sign we found a great place to get some pictures of the falls, there also is a trail leading to the water hole underneath the falls. The water hole has easy access for a swim and the water was freezing but very refreshing, There is clear grassed area’s for a relaxing day or a picnic.On the right side of the falls we walked up the river along a track for a short distance, there are many small cascades running into main fall. The walking track up along the waters edge continues but not sure on how far this leads to but is a clear track. Walking the track back up the hill to car was a little challenging, again because of the wet surface but also steep in some areas, taking our time and at a steady pace, stopping for a few short breaks it wasn’t that bad, we finally returned back to the road. A beautiful walk! great for a couple of hours or spend the day relaxing or exploring.

Google Maps- HERE

 

Cave Creek Waterfall Walk N.S.W

2015-07-08-16_53_31Cave Creek is near Hilltop, Southern Highlands, which is not far from Mittagong, NSW. Cave Creek Walking Track begins off Wilson Drive just a few km west of Hilltop, heading towards Balmoral.  A sign can be seen from Wilson Drive, situated in the Bargo River State Conservation Area. This place is a hidden treasure, an easy short walk approx 2.6 km return and is well worth a look. Toilets, picnic shelters and BBQ are all in close vicinity to car park. The walk starts with a slight decline downhill, the track is easy with some sections of loose rocks, stairs and old logs in the paths way. The beginning of the walk is typical of the dry Australian bushland with wattle and many native plants along the way.

2015-07-08-16_55_21The track continues to descend down hill and as you get nearer to the bottom of the track it divides into a “T” inter section, veering off to the left, you go down to some metal stairs this takes you to a cave at the back of the main cave/waterfall, you can hear the waterfall behind the cave. Turning back on to the main track and heading further down the path, the environment changes into a beautiful lush rainforest and the temperature also becomes much cooler. Following the stairs down then looking on your right is a huge wall, the sandstone wall has many colors and textures it looks amazing.

On the left is a clear river leading to a small bridge, walking along brings you to the main waterfall inside the opening to the cave. This place is small but breath taking. The area surrounding the cave entrance is very muddy, wet and slippery lots of logs and loose rocks. Take your time and look around to explore this beautiful place.

Google map – HERE

Exploring Morten National Park at Bundanoon N.S.W

img_3332Bundanoon is on the Southern Highlands, we by-passed the township and made our way to Morten National Park and parked the car in the picnic area which gas BBQ’s, picnic tables and toilets. Maps of all the walking tracks are displayed on a big sign board near car park; the daily fee here is $7 which had to be paid by using change.

Erith Coal Mine Track. img_8171This walk is a 2km track its classed as medium grade. The first part of the track was an easy walk on gravel road with sign posts along the way giving information on flora and fauna, further along we came across some sandstone steps and some gravel steps which were very easy to navigate. With-in a few steps you leave the woodlands and step into the rainforest and a few sets of steep metal steps. Once we reached the top of the water fall there is few slippy sandstone steps and a small creek to cross then a steep set of steel stair to climb down, which could be a little daunting for some. On the climb down we were excited and in awe of the beauty of the rainforest and the waterfall. We spent about an hour here admiring the waterfall and exploring and taking pictures off the coal mines. The coal mines started operating in 1860 to 1915 which was a meter thick seam of poor quality coal. We headed back up to the top of the waterfall and opted to take the steps along the fence to a fire trail which looped back up to the main road back to car park.

img_8188Grand Canyon. We drove the car the the next car park, and decided to have our lunch while enjoying the majestic view of the Grand Canyon. Next to the only picnic table is 2 short walks Gambells Lookout (70 meters) which is the same view as from the lookout above and Fern Glen Walk (210 meters) which is a short walk through a beautiful fern gully.

 

 

img_8285Fairy Bowen Track. Fairy Bowen track was broken down into 2 walks one being a longer walk. We decided to do the short walk of 1.5 hours return. The fire trail down was short and easy till we made it to the steep stairs, hand rails were needed for support in places. At the bottom we where greeted by a lush rainforest and walking to the end of this track there were beautiful small waterfalls along the way then running off the cliff, the view here was amazing.

 

Google maps- HERE

Trekking to Mermaid Pools NSW

imag8175Waking up to a sunny and warm Sunday we decided to stayed close to home and venture over to Tahmoor about an hour drive from Wollongong, The Mermaid Pools, has been on our list for a while. Arriving mid morning, driving from Picton, once your on Charles Point Rd continue to Pheasants Nest Ford Crossing Bridge turn left into a small dirt road just before the bridge which leads down to the parking area at bottom of river it is easy to find.

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The walking track has no signage but is a well-defined track, along the way you see painted rocks or coloured tags to keep you on track so its pretty easy to follow, we continued on the right side and followed the river. The walk starts off quiet flat only jumping a few large rocks, we came to a point the track separates into 2 tracks both eventually meet up again, (there is a painted rock with arrows) we decided to take the bottom track which follows the river. It was beautiful very quiet and peaceful. Following the track to the pools is not to hard but lots of large steps and rocks to climb and one or two steep sections making it a lot more fun. At the end of the bottom section you find an old diesel engine from here you head up hill and keep walking along cliff face. Arriving at the see-through-pools, this is a small waterhole with water cascade and lots of rock pools. There was a track leading down to it but we stayed on track it looked amazing looking down at it.

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Walking a bit further along we came to a sign with directions to Tahmoor Gorge, which is a 10km return walk, we had to back track a little and head down a rocky track which took us to the Mermaid pool. Climbing over huge rocks and down to the edge. As it being winter no one was swimming but a few people picnicking around edge. We sat for a while to admire the surrounds then looked around at the waterfalls and huge cave like rock formations surrounding the pools.

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This is a really pretty place we were lucky there we not many people there but could imagine it would be popular in summer. On the way back we took the high track it was open area and in some sections looked like a fire had gone through recently, lots of silver gum and wattle trees. This return walk was easy there were pieces of yellow steel markings on trees to follow along. The walk was 4km return taking an easy couple of hours, at a casual pace. The mermaid pools is well worth a look a really nice way to spend a few hours or take some lunch and spend the day there.

Google map – HERE