St. John's Uniting Church Wahroonga

Perimeter trail, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, Saturday 21st October, 2017

The Cartophiles’ October day walk is the Perimeter Trail, an easy-to-moderate rated walk that contours gently around the northern side of Terrey Hills on a wide mostly level trail.  This popular horse riding, mountain bike and walking trail takes us past several beautiful lookouts and picnic spots, with occasional views across Ku-Ring-Gai National Park.

The Perimeter Trail is a 7.2km one-way walk.  The majority of the walk is flat or gentle hills with occasional steps, but about 2½km has short steep hills. It should take us 2½-3 hours.

We’ll meet at the end of the walk, outside 24 Nerang Avenue, Terrey Hills, at 9.30 am on Saturday 21st September.  We’ll leave some cars there and pool in the remaining vehicles for the 10 minute drive to the start of the walk at the intersection of Cullamine Rd & Bulara St.  There’s no public transport to either end of the walk.

After the walk we’ll go for lunch and a debrief to the Terrey Hills Tavern, 2 Aumuna Rd, Terrey Hills.

Wear a hat and carry at least a litre of drinking water. The forecast is for rain during the week clearing by that weekend, with partial cloud cover and a temperature in the high 20s.  Therefore, bring sun block but seriously consider carrying a rain coat.

It’s likely to be muddy underfoot, so wear boots, walking shoes, cross trainers or similar – thongs or crocs aren’t suitable.

For details download the 2017 Walk 8 (Perimeter Trail) flyer.

To register for the walk, or to get more information, contact Kit Craig at or on 0411 507 422.

Muogamarra Nature Reserve, Saturday 16th September, 2017

Every year we capture snaps of this waratah in flower!

Each spring Muogamarra Nature Reserve puts on one of Sydney’s most vibrant natural floral shows, including waratahs, native orchids, bright pink eriostemons, purple boronias and towering Gymea lilies. The reserve is open to the public just six weekends a year so that visitors can experience the magnificent wildflowers. As we have for the last seven years, the Cartophiles will once again take this limited

As usual, we will split into two teams for walks.

One team will walk the medium-rated Deerubbin Lookover circuit, which follows an historic road past rock formations to a hill top lookout with views to Barrenjoey Lighthouse and the Ba’hai Temple. It then returns to the road to go to a rocky platform with outstanding views over the Hawkesbury River. This team will have lunch at the lookover, then retrace their steps. This moderate-rated 6 kilometre walk climbs 110m in total and should take about 4 hours. It’s suitable for novice walkers.

The other team will do the hard-rated Peats Crater Walk, the longest available at Muogamarra Nature Reserve. It winds down Peats Bight Trail over historic road works into Peats Crater, a volcanic diatreme and the site of early farm settlements that took advantage of the rich soil. It continues along the original road to Peats Bight through rainforest and mangrove environments. This team will have lunch on Peats Bight at the southern entrance to Berowra Creek, with views across the water to Bar Point, then return to the car park, climbing about 210m. The 10 kilometre walk will take about 5 hours. It’s suitable for novice walkers, but requires a reasonable level of fitness: the hill to the car park is quite steep.

We’ll meet at the Cowan railway station at 9.00 am on Saturday 16th September and drive for 10 minutes from there to the reserve. Those who come by train can car pool. Note there is a cash-only $10 per head entry fee to the reserve. There are limited facilities at the reserve, which is staffed by volunteers. Bring your own lunch.

Wear a hat and carry at least a litre of drinking water. To cover all contingencies please also bring sun block and a rain coat. Wear walking shoes, cross trainers or similar – thongs or crocs aren’t suitable. Bring money for the park entry fee and a camera to preserve the memories.

For more information download 2017 Walk 7 (Muogamarra) flyer

Abbotts Falls Walking Track, Watagans National Park & Olney State Forest, DEFERRED TO SATURDAY 26th AUGUST, 2017

The Cartophiles’ August day walk is our first in the Watagan Mountains and the first in Kit’s & Sue’s new area. The walk is to Abbotts Falls, on the headwaters of Dora Creek.  You can download the flyer here: 2017 Walk 6 (Abbott’s Falls) flyer

The walk is rated hard.  It’s a 7.3km circuit through open forest on the ridge top to descend into a moist rainforest environment near Abbotts Falls and, based on the bush around Morisset, there should be a nice display of early wildflowers along the way.

Most of the walk is gentle hills or short steep hills, along formed tracks or trails.  It’s rated hard because there’s about 1km of rough track of which about half is very steep.   It should take about 3 hours to complete the circuit.

After the walk we’ll debrief at the Craig’s, about half an hour drive from the finish point.  The debrief will include a sausage sizzle.

Those who don’t feel like walking but would like to debrief anyway are invited to come straight to the Craig’s where Sue will entertain them until the walkers return.

The start point is The Pines Camping Area, just off the Watagans Forest Road in the Olney State Forest.  It’s about 1½ hours drive from Wahroonga and is easily accessible by 2WD cars.  We’ll meet there at 9.15am on Saturday, 19th August and start walking at 9.30am.

If you’ rather take the train, catch the 6.22am train from Hornsby to Newcastle; you’ll arrive at Dora Creek Station at about 8.00am and Kit will give you a lift to the walk.

Wear a hat and carry at least a litre of drinking water. The forecast is for temperatures in the mid-teens with a chance of a shower, so bring a rain coat.  As usual, Kit will carry a first aid kit. This is a walk for hiking shoes or boots.

Don’t forget a camera to preserve the memories.

To get directions to the Craig’s house, register for the walk, or to get more information, contact Kit Craig at or
0411 507 422.

Cowan Station to Hawkesbury River (Brooklyn) Station, Saturday, 29th July, 2017

Brooklyn Dam

This walk had to be deferred due to bad weather in May.  It follows a popular section of the Great North Walk from Cowan Station to Brooklyn Station, with scenery ranging from foreshore to ridge top lookouts.

The first 2.5 km, from Cowan Station to Jerusalem Bay, is mostly easy and is suitable for kids.  The scenery at Jerusalem Bay is worthy of a postcard and is one of the most iconic views along the Great North Walk.  Those with children or who don’t feel up to doing the whole walk could turn around here.

From Jerusalem Bay the track is very steep and rough as the walk climbs up over a series of ridges before descending into Brooklyn. Although it is a lovely 12.5km section, with water views and a circumnavigation of Brooklyn Dam, it’s rated hard and isn’t suitable for the very young, very old or unfit.

We’ll meet in the car park at Cowan Station at 10.30am on Saturday, 29th July. The walk will 4-5 hours.  We’ll have lunch on the knoll overlooking Jerusalem Bay, then continue on to Brooklyn. We’ll have a debrief at The Anglers Rest Hotel in Brooklyn before catching the train back to cars.  Hopefully, anyone who turns back at Jerusalem Bay can join us for the debrief.

Sunday trains from Hawkesbury River station to Cowan station leave just after half past the hour on Sundays.  The trip takes 9 minutes.  If we catch the 4.37pm train we’ll be back at the cars by 4.46pm.

There is no water available at Jerusalem Bay or along the way, so you will need to carry at least a litre of drinking water. Kit will carry a first aid kit. Given how variable the weather has been I suggest walkers carry wet weather gear.  The track is well-defined with rock steps on most steep sections, but you should wear boots or stout walking shoes ― the creek crossings can be very slippery.  Bring a camera to preserve the memories, money for the debrief and your Opal card for the train trip.

For more information see 2017 Walk 3 rescheduled (Cowan-Brooklyn) flyer

To register for the walk contact Kit Craig at or on  0411 507 422.

Manly to North Head Walk Saturday 17th June, 2017

Our June day walk features the famous Corso, Manly Beach, Shelly Beach, Sydney Harbour National Park, the former School of Artillery and Fairfax Lookout on North Head, which offers extraordinary views of Sydney Harbour. It passes the former Quarantine station (now the Q station) and Manly Cove before returning to Manly wharf.

We’ll be in the middle of the humpback whale migration north along the coast, so there’s a chance we’ll be able to spot some offshore. You should carry binoculars just in case.

The walk is rated moderate and is mostly flat or gentle inclines on paved footpaths and park paths.  The 11km walk will take about 5 hours.

We’ll meet at Circular Quay at 9.15am at the end of Wharf 3 and catch the 9.30am ferry to Manly Wharf.  We’ll start walking at about 10.00am.  The 8.21am train from Wahroonga (8.25am from Turramurra) will get you to Wynyard Station in time to walk to Circular Quay for the rendezvous. DON’T FORGET YOUR OPAL CARD.

We’ll stop for lunch at the North Fort Cafe at about 12.30.  You can buy lunch there or bring your own.  After we finish the walk we’ll retire to the Steyne Hotel to discuss the days activities.

Wear a hat and carry at least a litre of drinking water. To cover all contingencies please also bring sun block and a rain coat.  The weather looks rainy!  Kit will carry a first aid kit. Wear walking shoes, cross trainers or similar – thongs or crocs aren’t really suitable.  Bring money for lunch and the post-walk discussion and a camera to preserve the memories.

You can access the flyer here 2017 Walk 5 (North Head) flyer

To register for the walk, or to get more information, contact Kit Craig at or on
0411 507 422.

A weekend in the Blue Mountains, Queen’s Birthday Weekend, 10th – 12th June, 2017


Following the success of last year’s long weekend on the south coast, this year the Cartophiles bushwalking club will spend the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in the Blue Mountains to take on three fun, moderate-rated day walks.

If you don’t feel up to all three walks, drive up or catch the train for just one or two.  If you want to stay overnight, book your accommodation NOW!

Saturday, 10th June, Mount York Walking Trail

Right on the western edge of the Blue Mountains, this 13km walk explores the historic and natural features the first road across the Blue Mountains (Cox’s Road, 1813) and its replacement (Lawsons Long Alley Road, 1822-1823).

Meet in the car park of the New Ivanhoe Hotel, Blackheath, at 10.00 am for the 15 minute drive to the start of the walk. The walk will take about 5 hours, followed by a debrief at the New Ivanhoe. Bring your lunch, or we can try the food at the Comet Inn, Hartley Vale.



Sunday, 11th June, Grand Canyon Track

This 6.3km adventurous track has been trodden by walkers since 1907. The intimate and awesome Grand Canyon track will take us into the heart of the Blue Mountains’ World Heritage-listed landscape with great sandstone walls, ever-present waterfalls and abundant native plants.

Meet at the Evans Head lookout, Blackheath, at 10.00am.  The walk will take about 4 hours, after which we’ll take time to fossick through the Blackheath shops and galleries.  You definitely need to carry your lunch!

We’ll organise a dinner that night at one of the excellent local restaurants.




Monday, 12th June, Fortress Ridge Trail

This fantastic 7.4km return walk follows the Fortress Ridge out to the cliffs above the Grose Valley. The views from the lookout and along the trail are superb, with the sheer cliffs and a deep valley to put it all in perspective.

Meet in the car park of the New Ivanhoe Hotel, Blackheath, at 9.30 am for the 10 minute drive to the start of the walk.

This walk will take about 3 hours, after which we’ll drive to the Lawson Hotel for a late lunch and debrief before braving the traffic back to Sydney.





Travel and Accommodation

You’ll need to seek your own accommodation, but luckily, there are lots of accommodation choices in the Blue Mountains from B&Bs to the 3½ star old world charm of The Hotel Imperial, Mount Victoria; the 5 star luxury of Lilianfels in Katoomba or the not a lot of stars but 1930’s architecture at the New Ivanhoe Hotel, Blackheath.

What to Wear and Carry

Kit will carry a first aid kit and personal locator beacon. You will need to carry at least a litre of drinking water, your lunch, something warm to put on during stops and wet weather gear. The tracks are all well-defined and often are fire trails or roads, but you should wear boots or stout walking shoes – the Grand Canyon particularly can be very slippery.

Bring a camera to preserve the memories, some nice clothes for the non-walking times and money for the debriefs!

Click here for a copy of the 2017 Walk 4 (Blue Mountains weekend) flyer

To register for the walk, or to get more information, contact Kit Craig at or on 0411 507 422.

The Bundian Way, Kosciuszko National Park, 14-17 April, 2016

– Patrica Daly’s Facebook post –

Something new for the Cartophiles: the Wobbly Old Blokes sub-branch.  This was inadvertently launched by Patricia Daly in her Facebook post that showed five Cartophiles wading across the Snowy River at the start of out walk along stage 2 of The Bundian Way.

The Wobbly Old Blokes are Pierre, Ray, Kit and two new Cartophiles, Grant and Bill.  In addition to their many walked kilometres, Bill is a senior member of the SES based in Jindabyne and Grant was a farmer and RFS Captain in the Monaro for many years before he retired to Merimbula.

The Bundian Way is a 365km shared history pathway that follows an ancient Aboriginal walking route from the high country around Kosciuszko to the Eden coast at Fisheries Beach.  The pathway is at least 10,000 thousand years old; far older than the Silk Road or any of the great pilgrimages.

Stage 1 is  from Dead Horse Gap to the junction of the Pinch River and the Snowy; Bill, Grant and Ray walked it in spring last year, but I was in hospital and missed out.  Pierre has previously ridden it on his mountain bike.  Stage 2 is from the Pinch River junction to the town of Delegate, but we chose to end our walk on top of Mt Tingaringy rather than walk through miles of farmland.  We knew the 48km would be a tough enough challenge.

The walk was all along fire trails, which was a little disappointing.  However, this section is not without challenges.  It’s along ridge tops in a rain shadow area, so there’s no water along the way.  To cover the first couple of days we were all carrying 5-6 litres of water, which made our packs very heavy.  Ray had gone out a couple of weeks earlier in his Landrover and left two water drops, one at about 32km and one at about 42km.  We were going to need them for replenishment.  It’s also, as we were to experience, very steep.

We gathered in Jindabyne and, after coffee in the CBD Café, drove south for about an hour to our start point on the Snowy River.  This is wild, uncompromising country, too steep for extensive grazing and too remote for timber.  It was a daunting prospect even to drive through it.

– Our start point is in the bottom of the valley –

Wading across the Snowy wasn’t as cold as I’d expected, although the current was strong enough to make me concentrate.  We spent some time cleaning all the sand off our feet on the other bank before heading off along the fire trail.  We started with flat, easy walking, but we were soon climbing the first of what would prove to be many, many hills for the day.  The top of the first big climb was a saddle where Sheepstation Creek rises.  It’s pretty obvious that the old pathway climbs the creek line, and we promised to come back one day and follow that route.

Then we climbed again.  And climbed.  And climbed.  On many sections the gradient was much more than 10%, described by one cycling site as, “A painful gradient, especially if maintained for any length of time.”

After 4-5km (and climbing 300-400 vertical metres) we stopped for a rest and some photographs down to our start point.  I’d dropped my pack and gone forward 50m or so to get a photo when a bay brumby stallion strode up onto the track in front of me. Sadly, I didn’t have the presence of mind to get a photo as it shied away and cantered off into the bush again.

– Sandy Creek Hut, L-R Ray, Grant, Kit –

The rest of the day was spent descending from one knoll before climbing the next, higher, knoll.  In the early afternoon we stopped to explore Sandy Creek Hut, built in the 1950’s by the Walker family for brumby running.  There is no water tank at the hut and the creek was dry.  We left the hut, and climbed.

We made camp on top the hill at the intersection of the Sandy Creek and Byadbo Trails.  In total we’d covered 16km and climbed a net 1000m vertically.  With the descents we probably actually climbed about 1,500m, making the day a category 3-4 walk.  We were pooped.

Dinner, a fire, quiet conversation, a spectacular sunset before the darkness of the Byadbo wilderness.  Ray shared his whisky around the group while we looked at the amazing display of stars unpolluted by artificial light.  We were in bed by 8.00.  My Fitbit tells me I slept for just over 9 hours that night!

The next morning was misty.  The first water drop was 16km away and, prompted by how hard the first day had been, we wanted to reach it and push on further so the last day wouldn’t be too long.

– Sunset over our first campsite –

The first part of the walk was a long descent  ̶  a lot of yesterday’s gains were quickly walked away.  By 9.30 the mist had burned away and the scenery was fantastic.  All the while we could see Mt Tingaringy looming in the distance, easily identifiable by its large cliff face. Today we would walk in a long curve, heading east initially before swinging southeast towards the Victorian border.

It was another day of steep climbs and steep descents.  We saw several kangaroos along the track, but sadly there was much more evidence of feral infestation.  There was lots of brumby sign, especially where the stallions mark their territory with piles of dung.  Occasionally we’d see wild dog scats, and several times we walked past rabbit warren middens.  At one stage I dropped behind the group to adjust my pack, and had to wait while a family of wild pigs ran across the road in front of me.

We made the water drop by lunch time and between the five of us emptied the 20 litre collapsible water container Ray had left there.  We were lucky the weather wasn’t warmer, or water could have been a real problem.  In his book On Track, John Blay, Bundian Way Project Officer with Eden Local Aboriginal Land Council, describes walking this route in about 2005.  After finding his water drop chewed open and drained by wildlife he wrote, “This is serious … my sips have been getting sparser as the afternoon draws on.  Even so, I don’t have enough moisture to urinate … It’s more than a day’s walk to the next place where I know I’ll find water.”

We pushed on and made camp at the intersection of the Link and Tingaringy Trails, about 22km for the day.  We were happy with that given the steepness of the country and the extra weight of carrying our water.  Pierre and Bill were there well ahead of the rest of us; about a kilometre from camp I hit the wall and had to stop for a rest.  Ray and Grant generously stopped with me while I recovered.

Another fire, another gloriously starry night, more companionship, except with Bill’s whisky this time.

– Mt Tingaringy –

The third morning was foggy again, but once again the sun burned it off by about 9.30 to give a clear views from our ridge top trail.  The walking was much easier today and we made good time.  The forest was wetter and more open, with beautifully twisted mountain gums.  Grant told me that they’re also known as monkey gum, because they’re a favourite food of koalas.

We were now walking almost due south towards the Victorian border and Mt Tingaringy.  We had about six kilometres to get to the next water drop at the junction of the Karachi and Tingaringy Trails.

There were a few short, steep hills, but nothing like the monsters we had confronted on day one.  We passed a track going down to the old Merambego  homestead, then climbed a steep hill to top of the ridgeline and the track junction at about 11.00am.  We’d arrived but … no water!

Ray admitted that, when he dropped the water, it was getting dark and he was in a bit of a rush.  He was also worried because he’d had a flat tyre and couldn’t afford another.  We all searched, but the water container was not to be found.  Now we were in a dilemma.

Bill and I each had about three litres of water left, but the other three were almost dry.  Our support crew, Ray’s wife Patricia, Grant’s wife Mandy and Pierre’s wife Clare, would get to us in around five hours.  We could wait at the junction for them, or climb to the top of Mt Tingaringy, a walk of about 5km that climbs about 450m, or we could walk out along the relatively flat Karachi Trail.  We chose the climb.

We redistributed the water and headed uphill.

This was a long, slow climb interspersed with short, savage inclines.  The trees became more stunted the higher we went and the views opened up accordingly.  We had lunch in a clearing at the top of one particularly nasty pitch, with views northwest over the Byadbo Wilderness towards the main range.  The wild country looks much the same as it must have to those ancient native travellers who stopped here for a rest.

We kept climbing.  Ray and I stopped at the Victorian border to get photographs, confident that, as native Victorians, we didn’t need a visa to cross.

We were nearly there, but there were still surprises.  Someone had shot three wild dogs and hung then from a tree near the summit.

We reached the top of the mountain at about 2.00pm.  The sky had misted a bit, but the views were still stunning.  We could see south into the Victorian Alps, north into the Monaro, and west/northwest into the Kosciuszko National Park.  Two wedge-tailed eagles soared above us as we rested, prompting lots of jokes about making sure we moved to prove we weren’t dead.

The girls in the support crew joined us at about 3.30pm, and by then there was a cold wind blowing across the mountain top.  We decided that a night around the fire on top of Tingaringy was not as attractive as a night in the Delegate Hotel, so we jumped into the two 4WDs for the tough descent of the fire trail, often in low range.  A pretty-faced wallaby stood by the side of the track and watched us leave.

The Wobbly Old Blokes on top of Tingaringy; L-R Ray, Kit, Grant, Bill, Pierre

The Support Crew











A shower, a beer or two in the bar and a barbecue dinner were a great reward for completing a challenging walk. This is not a walk I plan to repeat, but it has really whet my appetite to complete the Bundian Way.

Kit Craig, April, 2016





First walk for the year – 18th February

As we did last year, the Cartophiles will kick off the new year exploring some of the interesting bush and sights on the western side of the Pacific Highway.  For more information see 2017 Walk 1 (Turramurra-Pymble) flyer

After the walk attendees are invited to the Craigs’ house for a BBQ and, if you want, a swim.  BYOG.

To register for the walk, or to get more information, contact Kit Craig at
or on 0411 507 422.

2016 Major Trek: Three Capes Track, Tasmania, 7th – 10th November

Lonely Planet says it’s among the ‘world’s hottest new experiences’.  Opened to the public for the first time last December, Tasmania’s Three Capes Track is a world-class, multi-day walking experience of 46 km on the Tasman Peninsula.  It’s an easy to moderate walk, lightly packed, on a track so meticulously crafted you’re free to enjoy your experience rather than watching every step.


Places on the trek are limited, so book early.  This will be an experience you’ll talk about for years.  For an overview see 2016 Major Trek (Three Capes Track) flyer (PDF format).

Full information on the Thee Capes Track is available at

For more information contact Kit Craig on 0411 507 422 or email

Metrogaine “LaneCoveRivergaine2”, Saturday 27th February, 2016

The Cartophiles’ second activity for the year is to enter teams in the NSW Rogaining Association’s (NSWRA) annual Metrograine. Last year this event started from the source of the Lane Cove River in Pennant Hills and travelled as far as De Burghs Bridge at West Pymble. This year it continues the journey down the river from De Burghs Bridge as far as Stringybark Creek in Lane Cove.


Rogaining is a team activity for people of all ages and levels of fitness. Everyone from elite athletes to families with young children can enjoy rogaining. The parts of the course you visit are entirely up to you – there are no set routes and you don’t have to spend the whole time on the course. The satisfaction comes in finding your way around the course according to the route you have chosen and navigating back to the finish within the time limit. Last year the Cartophiles only entered one team (read about it here), this year we plan to have our own internal competition!

This event is run by the NSWRA and entry close at midnight on 22nd February.  

To register for the walk, or to get more information, go to the NSWRA site at

or contact Kit Craig at
or on 0411 507 422


Turramurra/ Wahroonga Circuit, Saturday 20th February, 2016

The route

The route

The Cartophiles’ first day walk for 2016 explores some of the lesser known areas of bushland on the western side of the Pacific Highway. Using fire trails and well-defined walking tracks we travel through:

  • The Wahroonga Estate Environmental Conservation Zone
    Privately owned by the Seventh-day Adventist Church but open to the public, it includes remnants of Sydney Blue Gum High Forest.
  • Browns Field
    Named after John Brown, a merchant and timber-getter, who cleared the land of timber and planted orchards, it’s a small bushland area in the flat valley floor of a small volcanic diatreme, probably early Jurassic age. Rainforest trees, shrubs and ferns are found at Browns Field but nowhere else in the Lane Cove Valley.
  • Twin Creek Reserve
    Named for the creek in the upper reaches of Lane Cove River that forks near its head. The track follows the lower creek line through rainforest to tall Eucalypt forest. It returns along the ridge top where there are some rare species of Eucalyptus characteristic of the dry Sydney sandstone.
  • The Broadway Bushland Reserve
    A pretty little spot that conserves remnants of the 1924 plan by Ku-ring-gai shire president Christopher Bowes-Thistlethwayte and harbour bridge engineer John Bradfield for the Western Arterial Roadway as an alternative route from the North Shore to the bridge.
  • Bradley Reserve
    Named for the Bradley sisters, Eileen and Joan, pioneers of bush regeneration in the 1960s it is part of the Fox Valley Creek wildlife corridor. It shows the dry sclerophyll forest typical of the ridgelines in the area.

We’ll meet at the entrance to Howson Oval, opposite 22 Howson Avenue, Turramurra, at 9.30am on Saturday, 20th February. The walk will take 2½ – 3 hours, after which you’re invited to the Craigs’ house for a BBQ.

For more details see 2016 Walk 1 (Turramurra-Sth Wahroonga) flyer

Cartophiles’ 2016 Walk Program

The walking program for 2016 is now available.  It’s just a little but harder than last year, but in return includes more new walks, including a local walk exploring of some of the lesser known tracks and hidden gems on the west side of the Pacific Highway.

As another new adventure we will travel to Batemans Bay on the June long weekend to do three individual day walks.

Finally, we have TWO major treks planned this year: a one week trek on the Katoomba to Mittagong Trail in October and a four day walk on the new Three Capes Track in Tasmania in November.

The program is available in PDF format on this link 2016 Walk Program.



The Lost Records – the Walks We Did in the Second Half of 2015

The lack of reports since June 2015 could be taken as evidence that the Cartophiles haven’t been very active.  In fact, it just demonstrates that walking has been a higher priority than writing.  Here’s a quick summary of the walks we did in the second half of 2015 but never reported on:

Wondabyne Station to Kariong Brook Waterfall, Saturday 16th May, 2015

Just three of us, walking in the drizzle!








Govett’s Leap to Mt Victoria, Blue Mountains National Park, 6th – 8th June (Queen’s Birthday Weekend), 2015

Actually, this was reported by James, but I just had to add some photos.

Two fine figures ready to go

Two fine figures ready to go

A very steep descent

A very steep descent

Victoria Cascades

Victoria Cascades

James looked damp after falling in the creek

James looked damp after falling in the creek

We made it!

We made it!

















Burrawang Walk & Cape Baily Track, Kamay Botany Bay National Park, Saturday 20th June, 2015

Kit and four girls!

At Captain Cook's landing place

At Captain Cook’s landing place

A waterfall over the track

A waterfall over the track

Through the bog!

Through the bog!

Axe sharpening grooves

Axe sharpening grooves

I see no signal!

I see no signal!















Thornleigh Station to Hornsby Station, Saturday 18th July, 2015

No photos of climbing the stairs to Hornsby, though …

A few hills

A few hills

A few stairs

A few stairs

A few flat bits ... in order walking away: David, Paul, Tim, Linda, Sue

A few flat bits. In order walking away: David, Paul, Tim, Linda, Sue









Middle Harbour Creek Loop, Saturday 15th August, 2015

A delightful new walk

Awwwww ... ducklings

Awwwww … ducklings

Middle Harbour Creek was very still in the morning light

Middle Harbour Creek was very still in the morning light

The Cartophiles' answer to Abbey Rd

The Cartophiles’ answer to Abbey Rd

You're probably wondering why I've called you all together like this

You’re probably wondering why I’ve called you all together like this

Who was photographing who?

Who was photographing who?

Sue & Andrew reminisce about the Camino

Sue & Andrew reminisce about the Camino

A grand entrance

A grand entrance

Crossing Roseville Bridge

Crossing Roseville Bridge

















Muogamarra Nature Reserve, Saturday 19th September, 2015

Our traditional Spring walk

View from the top







Katoomba to Wentworth Falls, Blue Mountains National Park, 3rd – 5th October, 2015

This one was hard!

Penny & Sue on the flanks of Mt Solitary

Penny & Sue on the flanks of Mt Solitary

Sue meditates on top of Mt Solitary

Sue meditates on top of Mt Solitary

Penny climbing the Koorowall Knife-edge

Penny climbing the Koorowall Knife-edge

Kit's leg, infected after the walk

Kit’s leg, infected after the walk









The Bloody Long Walk, Northern Beaches, Sunday 18th October, 2015

A 35 km team challenge from Palm Beach to Manly.  We had two teams, this is just the one I was with.

They started

They started

They walked

They walked

and they finished

and they finished








North Curl Curl to Long Reef and Return, Saturday 14th November, 2015

It rained again.

The girls on the rocks

The girls on the rocks

The photo shop

The photo shop

Janet leads the cold, damp team over the track

Janet leads the cold, damp team over the track

The debrief

The debrief

The furthest point reached was Dee Why Lagoon ... then we went to the debrief.  Pip in the foreground, L-R at the back: James, Sue, Tim, Don (obscured), Rupert (slightly less obscured), Rebecca, Natalie, Annie, Kit, Janet, David

The furthest point reached was Dee Why Lagoon … then we went to the debrief. Pip in the foreground, L-R at the back: James, Sue, Tim, Don (obscured), Rupert (slightly less obscured), Rebecca, Natalie, Annie, Kit, Janet, David



















The Manly Scenic Walkway, Saturday 19th December, 2015

Lots of walkers, lots of fun

Mmmmm ... ice cream

Mmmmm … ice cream


Some stairs

The gentlemen taking the air at Fairlight

The gentlemen taking the air at Fairlight

Burrawang Walk & Cape Baily Track, Kamay Botany Bay National Park, Saturday 20th June, 2015

IMG_0308The Cartophiles’ sixth day walk of the year takes us back to the National Heritage listed Kamay Botany Bay National Park, rich in both Aboriginal and European history to repeat a walk we did last June.

We start and finish at the Kurnell Visitor Centre and cover two walks.  First is the very easy Burrawang Walk which passes several of the area’s historic sites, including Captain Cook’s Landing Place, and includes many interpretive signs outlining the park’s cultural and natural history.

After that we’ll explore the heath and the great views along the moderate-rated Cape Baily Track between the Visitor Center and the Cape Baily Lighthouse. This walk follows a mixture of service trails, bush tracks, rock platforms and sand dunes. Hopefully we’ll once again see some migrating whales offshore.

For more information see 2015 Walk 6 (Burrawang walk & Cape Baily Track) flyer.

To register for the walk, or to get more information, contact Kit Craig at or on
0411 507 422.

Overnight walk in June: Govett’s Leap to Mt Victoria, Queen’s Birthday Weekend

The Cartophiles’ second overnight walk of the year is a three day trek over the Queen’s Birthday Weekend, 6th – 8th June.

We start at Govetts Leap on Saturday morning, pass Bridal Falls then drop into the Grose Valley and follow the river to the Acacia Flats campsite. On Sunday we walk through the Blue Gum Forest and continue to explore the valley to the Burra Korain Flat Camping Area. On Monday it’s a short walk but a very steep climb of about 430m to Mt Victoria past the spectacular Victoria Falls and the smaller Victoria Cascades.

The distance each day allows time to stop, explore and enjoy the fantastic scenery and we should be finished by midday on Monday to allow time to get home.

For more information see 2015 Overnight Walk 2 (Govetts Leap to Mt Victoria) flyer.

You must register for this walk by Monday 29th May. For more information contact Kit Craig on 0411 507 422 or email

Berowra Station to Berowra Waters and return, Saturday 14th March, 2015

The next day walk for the Cartophiles bushwalking club revisits one of the very earliest walks the club ever did: 5½ km from Berowra Station down to Berowra Waters for lunch, then return to the station.

We’ll meet at the Berowra Station car park at 10.00am on Saturday, 14th March. The walking is on fire trails and well formed tracks, and all the steep sections have formed steps, but because a couple of the climbs are steep it’s rated moderate to hard.

For more information see 2015 Walk 3 (Berowra to Berowra Waters) flyer.

To register for the walk, or to get more information, contact Kit Craig at
or on 0411 507 422.

Metrogaine, Saturday 28th February, 2015

The view across the course from City Lookout

The view across the course from City Lookout

Congratulations James & Edwina!  The Cartophiles only entered one team for the NSW Rogaining Association’s (NSWRA) annual Metrograine in the Lane Cove National Park.  James and Edwina carried the weight of the Cartophiles’ expectations and didn’t let us down.  The came 56th of 94 teams in the mixed team category and 103rd overall out of 194 teams.

Here’s James’s report:

To the frustration of many (or some) of the Cartophiles, only Edwina and I faced the starter’s whistle for the Metrogaine held last Saturday, 28 February 2015. Not only that, we finished within the time limit.  

Before I fill in the details between the beginning and end, I wish to praise the organizers, the course setters and the map makers. This was my fourth Metrogaine and I have to come to appreciate the tremendous effort made by those who put it together. The event runs like clockwork (you lose 10 points for every minute or part thereof you are late), the course is challenging without being over the top and the maps are delightfully potentially ambiguous to keep your map reading skills on edge. It’s a great day.

This year’s event was held in the upper reaches of the Lane Cove River. It was called the Lane Cove Rivergaine.  It was bounded by Ryde Road, The Pacific Highway, Fox Valley Road, The Comenarra, Pennant Hills Road, the Northern Railway Line and the M2. The course was longer than usual because they were running both a 6 hour and a 12 hour event.  Only because of time restraints, Edwina and I entered the 6 hour event.

The weather was beautiful, the last day of summer. Walking conditions were superb. The temperature was only in the high 20’s when we were in the shade of the bush, rising to the mid 30’s when we were marching along the suburban streets and all of that was wrapped up with high humidity, soft breezes and a gorgeous cloudless blue sky. A great day for Whale Beach, not Whale Rock. It was one of those days which makes you glow and shine as your enjoy the steady trickle of perspiration ooze down your back or drip into your eye. The first thing we noticed as we started was the pong of BO in the air: a real incentive to find our own course. We spent much of the time hoping for a pub around the next bend. A typical metrogaine.

The hash house was the Baden-Powell Scout Centre at Thornleigh. We started at 11.00 which gave me time to mow the lawn before we left home. Life is too short! We then chose an anticlockwise route which took us to Pennant Hills Park, down to Whale Rock, back to the M2, up to Norfolk Road,  Epping (such beautiful homes), past North Epping Primary before heading back into the bush and down to Devlin’s Creek, along Scout Creek where we missed our turn up to City Lookout and had to backtrack, then up to the lookout (which really had me puffing and regretting that I had only had a hot cross bun for breakfast – we had to stop for lunch) then off to Thornleigh Park, before clambering down to the Lane Cover River and up to The Broadway (if the track goes down it must soon go up)  then back through the bush to the Comenarra, down the Comenarra to the cutting, through the bush up to Dawson Ave. Park and finally, we hightailed it back to the start. We covered about 19 klms, most of it on bush tracks, some of which were easy, one section was like a creek bed but most of it was undulating and rocky and at times, quite narrow and steep. The track was not as fast as I anticipated.

We had planned a longer route (about 23 klms) but at 3.30 we realised we weren’t going to make it and had to plan a new course to maximize our points for the last 90 minutes and not be late. With gut instinct and rough intuition (chaos always trumps planning) we managed to score over 1000 points and make it home with 4 minutes to spare. A quick sanger and drink and I was ready to cark it.

We had a splendid meander through some very beautiful bushland all so close to home. We hope other Cartophiles will take up the challenge with us next year. I plan to take a large magnifying glass because after a while all contour lines look the same.

Metrogaine competitors at the checkpoint at Whale Rock in the Lane Cove National Park

Metrogaine competitors at the Whale Rock checkpoint in the Lane Cove National Park

For all the results and more photos see the NSWRA site at


First walk of the year — Jerusalem Bay, Saturday,14th February, 2015

The Cartophiles gather at Cowan Station for the first walk of the year ………………. L-R James (obscured), Tim, Annie, Paul, David (obscured), Mary (back turned), Sue, Glenn, Angelina, Penny, John

The Cartophiles have opened our 2015 programme with the lovely walk along the Great North Walk from Cowan Station to Jerusalem BaCIMG1675y.  When we reached the iconic view from the headland we all felt so fresh that we decided to cross the small creek that enters the bay here and have lunch by the small waterfall at the start of the very steep climb out of Jerusalem Bay to Brooklyn.

Thirteen Cartophiles met at Cowan Station for an easy 10.30 start.  Regular members David, Paul, James, Annie, Mary, Sue and Kit were joined by occasional members Penny, Angelina, Nicolah, John and Glenn on a bright, mild morning ideal for a walk.  The recent overnight rains had muddied a couple of spots on the track, but mostly the footing was dry and solid.  The creeks were flowing gently, the trees rustled in the breeze and, even though the tide was out, Jerusalem Bay was filled with houseboats and swimming children when we arrived.



CIMG1681John and the children walked down onto the mud flats to look at the large groups of hermit crabs running between the puddles as the rest of us followed the track into the mossy creek bed.  We crossed to the sandstone overhang and trickling water of the grotto at the foot of the very steep hill that has been such good training for endurance walks in the past.  We had a very pleasant lunch in the dappled shade.

During the walk back up the hill the humidity in the gully began to get to us and we were all feeling the heat.  By the time we reached the cars we were all ready for our debrief at the Blue Gum Hotel, which luckily coincided with the start of Australia’s opening game of the ICC World Cup.  A lovely walk, good company, great scenery, and air conditioned pub, and cricket.  Life doesn’t get much better than this!

The Cartophiles’ next day walk is participating in the NSW Rogaining Association’s annual 6 hour Metrograine.