Staples Lookout to Patonga via Rocky Ponds - Overnight Walk - Day 2

After a hard day of walking it was good to finally to get to sleep. But it was not to be. A monster of the night was going to try to keep me awake and eat my food!

So not that long after I dozed off I was woken from a animal not far from my tent. I couldn't see what it was, so made a grrrr noise and it went away. Again it woken me, this time it was closer to the tent. Again, grrrr I yelled, and it went away again. I did this several times. One time grrrring so loudly, half asleep, I scared myself!!
I could then see the shadow of a small animal climbing up the side of my tent. Grrr, it went away. The next time I woke, it was in the inter tent. It looked at me with me looking back at it. It had a marsupial type body, but Mickey Mouse shaped ears. Grrr I went, it went, but it was back within seconds.
It was now 3am. Not wanting stay up the rest of the night, I needed a way to keep it away. So I turned on my headlamp, aimed it towards it, and the monster was gone! And did not return. I left the lamp on until day break.

Just after 6am I was woken by the noise of birds and the sounds of trains off over the hill running along Mullet Creek. I made myself a nice warm breakfast. Then packed up my gear, collected more water and I was off on my way to Patonga.

Back up the hill I lugged a pack, what seem a lot heavy than the day before. But would have been lighter with food eaten. Mostly uphill walking I arrived at a intersection. I took the track that is signposted Patonga. The track crosses a number of rocky ourcrops for the next 2 kilometres. The track is quite well signposted. A lot better than the track I remember as a teenager. There is a good view of Mt Wondabyne, Woy Woy, Dillon's Farm and the Bahai temple at Terrey Hills on the other side of the Hawkesbury river.

Off the track I noticed a strange pile of rocks. So I decided to take a closer look. Someone had made a large snake out of some large rocks. I am sure when Google updates their satellite imagery you will be able to see it on Google Maps. 

I then walked back to the track through thick scrub. On the way down I grabbed a branch of a dead tree, which broke, I cut my leg and got thrown back on the track. It would have been a funny sight if anyone was on the track. 

With the noise of a crow, and a quite awful smell I knew I was near the Woy Woy tip. The track goes down a steep hill besides the tip meeting up with a creek. Here I passed a group of about 20 day walkers. Going back up the hill I rejoined a fire trail for the next 3 Kilometres. Along the track on the right hand side there glimpses of Brooklyn and the F3 freeway. 

I then crossed Patonga Drive and walked along a small track before walking along a dirt vehicular road that goes to Warrah Trig. Here I my legs were starting to get tired, this reminded me of the last time I walk this road when I was sixteen. I was also tired by this point.

I then went off track for a little bit. I came across the wrecks of two stolen cars. There also was a view of Box Head at Bouddi National Park. 

I then went to Warrah Trig Station and down stairs to Warrah Lookout, on the way looking at filtered views of Pearl Beach to my right. I arrived at the lookout, took in the breathtaking views of Palm Beach, Hawkesbury river and the hamlet of Patonga. This has to be one the best lookouts on the Central Coast.

I then joined a fire trail, then a track that goes down a steep track downhill. There were again great views.

The track then comes out on Dark Corner, which is at the eastern end of Patonga Beach. I then walked along the sandy beach. The walk was complete when I reached the wharf. I was happy to complete this walk. I now felt that I was ready for my multi-day walk that was coming up soon and that you will be able to read about.

Walk date 18/6/10


Staples Lookout to Patonga via Rocky Ponds - Overnight Walk - Day 1

I had stayed by myself overnight at Rocky Ponds when I was sixteen years old. This time I was carrying a heavier pack, I wasn't as fit, it was a lot colder and a monster of the night tried to eat my food. With a over 18 kilo's on my back, if I fell backwards I could be stuck in the middle of the bush, looking like a turtle with it's shell to the ground. Read more to see if such a thing happens.

With my father leaving me at Staples Lookout I walked down Woy Woy Rd and started to walk down Thommos Trail like a I did a few weeks before. 1.85Km's down the track I left the Great North Walk that goes Girrakool to the right and I went to the left on the fire trail. As the track went up hill I started to really notice the extra weight on my back. I then left the fire trail and went a across a bush track that goes across several large rock platforms. Here there is a good views of Mt Wondabyne.

At the end of the track I meet another fire trail. This one is used to service the Sydney to Newcastle railway line at Mullet Creek. I headed east along this trail instead of using the track that almost goes to the top of Mt Wondabyne and back down. Arriving at the intersection of another fire trail I went south.

The trail winds up the hill crossing a small creek passing the track that comes down from Mt Wondabyne to the right. Soon I arrive at a intersection, with Dillons Farm track straight ahead and Rocky Ponds fire trail to the right. On the Rocky Ponds trail on the left there are views of the valley which contains Patonga Creek. Soon I arrived at a rocky outcrop just off the track with views of the railway line running along Mullet Creek.

Further along the trail I stopped under a tree for my lunch. A couple of walkers passed me here. This was the last human contact I had for the rest of the day. I was soon was where the trail turns into a track. I was within a kilometre of Rocky Ponds, but instead I decide to go down a trail to Patonga Creek for a bit of a look. I hadn't been down this trail before. There is a nice creek that runs near the track. It look like a good place to cool off in summer.

Just after taking the above photo I slipped and fell backwards. For a moment I did feel like a turtle, stuck on my back. After a small struggle I manage to lift me and the pack back up. 
I soon crossed the creek. Again there was a nice sandy spot to cool off in the heat of summer. Up the hill I went. The track here is the remains of a old fire trail. It is quite eroded and in places hard to walk on due to small broken rocks. Most of the way is down hill, steep in places. Arriving at Patonga Creek it was relief to take my pack off and look over to the oyster leases on the peaceful creek.

With the pack on my back again, I headed back up the hill. This time it was 3 times as steep as when I walked down it! This little trip added almost 1 hour and half extra and 2 km's more to the walk.
I arrived at the Rocky Ponds Track. It goes mostly down hill. It also is very eroded. Much more than the last time I had walked it. In fact the first time I went to Rocky Ponds in the late 80's there was a stolen car burnt out sitting at the top of the Rocky Ponds falls, there is no way that could be done today due to condition of the track.
Arriving a Rocky Ponds I had a quick look at the ponds then setup my tent, sleeping and cooking gear. I then went for a walk exploring the falls and ponds. I then treated my water to purify it and went back to camp for dinner.


After listening to footy on the radio I soon went to sleep. But I was woken in the night several times by a wild animal trying to get into the tent which was lent to me by a workmate. I will soon write about this and the rest of the walk ahead very soon.

Walk date 17/6/10