Excursion: Blue Mountains

One week ago I went for an excursion through the Blue Mountains. First I walked through Katoomba and passed the Katoomba Cascades, which surprisingly still had a very small amount of running water, all the way to the famous Echo Point, which itself is not inside the Blue Mountains National Park, but instead just at its border. The Blue Mountains NP was closed again, due to the recent bush fires. A few days earlier, at lest the section to Wentworth Falls was open. The whole day was determined by a cloudy weather. Hence, the visibility was limited, but at least one could see the famous three sisters. The platform was crowded by Chinese people, which didn’t look to the mountains itself, but more important to the camera to make too much photos. In order also to make a photo at the front line, just behave the Chinese way and use your elbows to be at the pole position, because they wouldn’t stop making photos until you push into the scene.

As the Blue Mountains National Park was closed, I took the train to Mount Victoria, which was just three stations away, and by the way also the stop of the Indian Pacific for their Off Train Excursion. It was at this day also the final destination of the commuter train, as the railway tracks between Mount Victoria and Lithgow along the famous Zig Zag railway were burnt at around Christmas during the recent bushfires and the repair will need approximately two months. So I was really lucky two months ago, that at this time the Indian Pacific could still take this route. Now, it makes a detour via Goulburn, but at the last weekend it was also announced that the railway track between Goulburn and Campbelltown is closed due to the recent bushfires south in NSW. Anyway, during noon I started my walk from the train station through the small town of Mount Victoria. There were not many people around, I probably just saw one or two. First I went to the “One Tree Hill”, which is the highest point in the city of Blue Mountains, which means in essence, there’s another higher (unnamed?) peak of the Blue Mountains north-east of Lithgow. Then I followed a track above the Bushranger cave, from where a should have a nice view. But the wind pushed in several clouds from the north, and after maybe 15 min of break, it suddenly started to rain. As I needed to climb over an exposed boulder back to the track, I hurried up, as I didn’t know how this sandstone would behave under wet conditions. Then I walked down the Little Zig Zag and crossed a rainforest to the other side of the gully. After hiking up again in between the walls, I walked on top of them along the edge until Horners Point, which should provide also a nice view. Further on I passed Boronia crag, where some people did rock climbing, as this was one of just a few open crags in the Blueys. After a short stop at Mount Piddington, which is nothing special, I went down to Fairy Bower. That was definitely a very nice spot, as you walk down a narrow glen. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen the old drawings, which were done about 100 years ago in the sandstone. After crossing a creek I walked up again through some rainforest, until I reached the railway tracks near Mount Victoria.

Katoomba Cascades still have a very small amount of water
The view to the landscape of the Blueys was limited…
…but at least the Three Sisters were visible from the Echo Point
One Tree Hill was not very special, even as it is the highest point in the city of Blue Mountains
On top of Bushranger cave is a nice balcony to enjoy the view, if you dare to scramble above the exposed boulder with the steel step
Clouds were pushed from the north into the valley and a few minutes later, a short shower started.
Newly bolted routes next to Bushranger cave, seemed to be pretty OK to climb.
On the way to Horners Point I saw a climber in the wall.
Back at the railway station of Mount Vic, the train back to Sydney arrives.
My hike in the Blueys, east of Mount Vic

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