Leader: Colin Reid
Blue Mountains National Park: Leura to Blue Gum Forest and return
26 May 2019
An 80 leaders walk
Photos Colin Reid
Photo Pamela Reid
Colin Reid, Pamela Reid, Adrian Jones, Julie Jones, Colleen Loudon, Lydia Chua, Helena Smith, Doreen Handy, Graeme Rollings, Paul Webster, Kumiko Suzuki, prospectives Susan Beck, Bob Crispin
Mt Hay Road to Lockley Pylon then descend to Blue Gum Forest and return the same way. Some easy rock scrambling with loose rocks to contend with on both descent and ascent. Picturesque views. Map: Katoomba, Mount Wilson
Thirteen intrepid walkers (including prospectives Susan Beck and Bob Crispin) started the trek from the car park on Mt Hay Road in drizzling rain and cold conditions. The weather soon turned fine, and the sun came out making for a great day.
Fortunately, the recently graded Mt Hay Road made the 20-minute car trip from Leura to the track head an easy drive and avoided having to help stuck cars as had occurred on the recce two weeks earlier.
Great views were had as we walked through the heath on the 50-minute, relatively flat, walk to Lockleys Pylon. We ascended Lockleys Pylon and took in the views of Mt Hay and Mt Banks as well as the eucalypt forests of the Grose Valley.
National Parks inform us that the Pylon is named after J.G. Lockley, ‘a journalist who supported conservation efforts to save the Blue Gum Forest from logging in the 1930s'.
From there we made our way to Du Faur Head, requiring minor rock scrambling where long legs would have been most helpful. As an aside, Eccleston Du Faur played a major role in establishing Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park.
The wind was strong, and care was required as we passed close to cliff edges. We enjoyed morning tea before starting our 500m descent, in just under 2 kilometres to the Blue Gum Forest via Shortridge Pass. Magnificent views all the way.
On reaching the bottom we made our way to Acacia Flats across the fallen log over Govetts Creek. The large stand of Eucalyptus deanei trees remains a wonderful sight, although the undergrowth has increased significantly over the years. Having enjoyed an early lunch we retraced our steps.
The steep climb up on the loose rocks, with some minor exposure, tested our stamina and was not enjoyed by all. However, we all safely returned with the flat walking on the last leg greatly appreciated.
My thanks to Adrian Jones for going tail on the descent to Blue Gum and to those, including Paul Webster, who provided support and encouragement to others on the return leg.
A great day out with a great group of walkers.