Sunday, November 8, 2015

Mt St Leonard to Donnellys Weir, Healesville

Today we walked from Mt St Leonard down to Donnellys Weir. The only way to go!

Five intrepid mountaineers gathered in the post dawn light contemplating the challenge ahead – the summit of Mt St Leonard. The Beechworth bakery base camp was the venue for assembling gear and a last minute check of supplies for the task ahead. Silent prayers were offered to Saint Leonard, the patron saint of imprisoned people and women in labour. Our prayers were answered when after a mad dash in the Subaru Forester, a twenty minute huff and puff, we were delivered of an impressive view!

Not a photo of Mt St Leonard.

We enjoyed the unique perspective of the landscape from the lookout tower, the folds and rises of the Yarra valley, the expanse of the mirror like Port Phillip bay stretching to the horizon, the skyscrapers of Melbourne looking like a tiny toy town. We took some time to record the moment and practise self-timer photos before starting down. 

But this is!

We walked down through the bracken, tree ferns and the mighty Mountain Ash to join the open sections of the Bicentennial National Trail.  Great views down into the valleys and out to the surrounding areas. Lunch time gave us opportunity to look back to where we had descended from – very impressive.   More downhill after lunch until we arrived at Donnelley’s Weir. Celebrations all round as we had achieved our lofty goal – the summit of Mt St Leonard and a safe return.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Little River and Messmate Tracks in the Cathedral Ranges, Marysville Long Weekend.

Today we walked in the Cathedral Ranges.

We met at Ned’s Gully car park. Some of us decided on a short amble along the Little River trail whilst the remaining more adventurous walkers, went on a longer march to Sugar Loaf Saddle at the Southern End of the ranges. We all set off along the Little River track and enjoyed the shade of the tress and sound of the creek rushing along over rocks and stones. The adventure walkers arrived at Cooks Mills picnic area for morning tea before joining Tweed Spur Drive and then onto Messmate Track.

Here the, the intrepid leader assured the other walkers, it was only a short uphill until the track levelled out to an easy walk to the next picnic shelter. Well, that’s how I remembered it! After a long uphill trudge that never seemed to end, we finally arrived at the Sugar Loaf Saddle for lunch. Sitting eating lunch, we enjoyed the view of Sugar Loaf Peak, happy in the knowledge we didn’t have to walk up there and that is was downhill on the way back! We arrived back to the cars, foot sore and certainly ready for another splendid evening meal! 


Sunday, November 1, 2015

Keppel Hut, Lake Mountain - Marysville Long Weekend

Sunday was exploring day! We met in the carpark at the Marysville Information Centre and drove in convoy to Lake Mountain. 

It was misty as we arrived at Gerritys carpark at Lake Mountain and undeterred we set off for a 14 kilometre return trip to Keppel Hut. Low cloud that hung mysteriously amongst the snow gums obscuring the view into the valleys. From the carpark at the Lake Mountain resort, we wandered along the well maintained cross country ski trails, enjoying the cool weather and each other’s company. 

The ski trail snow poles accurately measured our journey and we soon we came up end of the well maintained trails. From here, we joined a less well maintained trail and set off on an exploration into the unknown. Well, not quite unknown, as the trail took us to a well maintained cattleman’s hut, Keppell Hut and a very well maintained 4-wheel drive road! 

We enjoyed lunch at the picnic tables next to the hut. The trail to the hut included a very long downhill and a very long uphill which didn’t seem quite so bad on the way out. On our journey back, we were treated by a brief thunderstorm that added to the atmosphere of the day. I must admit, I was very pleased to see the cars as we arrived back to the car park. A great day’s adventure.

Not a photo of Keppel Hut!

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