Monday, August 10, 2009

CENTRAL COAST - Warrah Trig to Patonga - HIKE - 24 September 2008

Driving towards Patonga on Patonga Road turn left at sign for Warrah Trig. The road is unpaved until the end at Warrah Trig where it is paved for parking spaces.

The first part of the walk is the Tony Doyle track. A sign indicates the sandstone walkway to Warrah Trig. It is only a short distance to the Warrah Trig marker (176m). At this point, there are views over the Hawkesbury River. The track itself is a well defined paved path, mixed with some wooden walkways. The sounds of insects buzzing and butterflies flittering amongst the profusion of flowers are present along the higher part of the track. The track descends for about ten minutes, between a number of small sandstone overhangs and boulders that break up the vegetation. The track crosses a fire trail which leads to Patonga on the right and Pearl beach on the left.

Straight ahead is Warrah Lookout track. It starts off paved but after a short distance becomes a natural track passing by small, scribbly gum trees and banksias. After two minutes, a flat sandstone area announces the lookout with its glorious views of Broken Bay, the Hawkesbury River, Barrenjoey and Patonga. The edge cliff is fenced from a near sheer drop of 100 metres. This is a nice place for a rest while taking in the breathtaking scenery with its dizzying height to the water below.

Continue back along the track until the fire trail and turn left towards Patonga. The trail ascends for a short distance passing overhangs of sandstone. At one spot on the right, there is a large scribbly gum growing improbably from under an overhang with its root system spread over the rocks and deep within rock fissures. After five minutes, there is a signpost indicating a track on the left leading to Patonga. The track gradually drops for ten minutes until the last steep drop to Patonga. There is a great variety of flowers and small tea trees, gums and banksias along the way with a number of small tracks that turn off to the left towards the cliff. The views from these various points are awe-inspiring but care must be taken as there is a steep drop and no protective fences.

journey time: 1 1/2 hour return

best points: views, natural bushland, flowers

worse points: none

special note: This can be started from Warrah Trig or Patonga and in warmer weather, a pleasant swim could be had at Patonga or Dark Corner (a small beach to the left at the end of the track).


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