Friday, October 4, 2013

AUSTRALIA - KAPUTAR NP - NARRABRI LAKE - YARRIE LAKE - HIKE/MTB - 23 to 26 september 2013

Day 1

Packed the van with clothes, kayak, mountain bike and guitar and off I went.

5 ½ hours later on an easy drive with little traffic, I arrived at Narrabri. The town was fairly well ordered and in no time I had petrol, stopped at the tourist centre and bought groceries for the next few days.

The drive to Kaputar National Park was through cattle land with long tall grass and heaps of windmills. The road steepened and narrowed for the KNP. The views were excellent through the gaps in the vegetation. The afternoon sun was playing shadows with the ravines between the ridges.



I drove to Dawson’s Springs camp area to check out the camping then took a short drive back to Kaputar Mountain summit carpark for a hike to the summit for the sunset. It was a very short walk along a boardwalk as the carpark was very close to the summit.

Distance 0.7 km

Time 1.26 minutes

Pace 9.05 km/h

Max pace 9.12 km/h



The view from the top was excellent with uninterrupted views to the west, north and east. I sat there for a while taking in the beauty of the sunset and the reflection of lakes in the distant west.

Back to Dawson Springs and dinner.

Day 2

Slept from 8 to 5am. Woke a few times first hot and then cold.

First walk ‘Bundabulla Circuit’ took me from Dawson’s spring to Horsearm creek Lookout, then Eckford Lookout, Bundadilla Lookout, Lindsay Rocks and Dawson’s spring. I was a great walk – great lookout, volcanic rock, tracks, boardwalks, birds all with windy but sunny, warm weather.

Distance 3.23 km

Time 47 mins

Aver pace 14.47 min/km

Max pace 9.18 min/km



 

The second walk was ‘Dawson’s Spring Nature trail’. This had an amazing boardwalk that curved up the hill. There was a small waterfall. I came across an amazing colony of ants building a nest partly under the ground and partly under a small branch with leaves.

Distance 0.66 km

Time 7.25mins

Av pace 11.15 min/km

Max pace 6:30 min/km

Drove a short distance to Mt Dowe which had mobile reception.

After a break, I decided to do a bike ride. A parked at Kaputar Plateau track head for the Kaputar Plateau Walk’, then it was steep downhill with heaps of obstacles to Rangers and Laird lookout. After that it was uphill towards Bark Hut and the road. The main road was a steep a steep cycle /walk to the van. A great ride, it was so fast, brakes failed in one section but I was lucky and eventually stopped and the views were excellent.

Distance 7.66 km

Time 1.02 hr

Av speed 7.3 km/h

Max speed 26.1 km/h



Back to the Dawson Springs camp, shower and an easy afternoon.

Total fireban (informed by ranger) and there were fires in Moree, which didn’t affect here.


Refreshed enough to try a sunset walk. I drove to the start of the Governor walk. I was a little short of time if I wanted to catch the sunset… so off I went. The walk was harder than I thought with stairs going up and down in three places and a rock scramble at the end plus some slightly undefined bush tracks in between. It was a great walk and the sunset was excellent. It was also a fast walk back so that I wasn’t walking in the dark.



Day 3

Up at dawn to Kaputar summit but I was a bit slow so I didn’t get quite the beginning.

Back to camp for breakfast and clean up then down to Narrabri for a cycle around ‘Narrabri Lake’. This was very good with birds, magpie attack and a red bellied back snake.

Distance 2.95 km

Time 14.42 min

Av speed 12.1 km/h

Max speed 25.5 km/h



Time to go into town for a cappuccino.

Drove to the north of Kaputar NP for ‘Sawn Rocks’. A great short walk. The pipes are amazing being octagonal in shape. The tree growth forces the rocks to crack and the bottom dry river below provides a close up of the pipes.

Distance 1.41 km

Time 16.32 min

Pace 11.46 min/km

Max pace 8.0 min/km



The weather was getting hotter. I drove to Yarrie Lake and camped there. The lake though shallow was very cool and pretty. I had a number of swims and rested…I was tired.

Later in the afternoon when it cooled down. I cycled around the lake. The track varied heaps and was heaps of fun.

Distance 5.08 km

Time 24.38 min

Av speed 12.4 km/h

Max speed 2.5 km/h



Day 4

I went for an early cycle around the lake as I enjoyed so much the day before. I took photos this time around. The bird life was excellent.

After breakfast, I drove to some lagoons near Wee Waa. There wasn’t much happening t the three that I visited but I did see a large red bellied black snake.

I was going to go the hot artisan baths but it was a bit of a distance so I decided to have a second breakfast in Wee Waa and head back home. It was a 6 ½ hour drive with lots of stops.

Retrospect

1.       Narrabri is a well ordered neat town

2.       Kaputar National Park has well organised walking tracks and signage. Easy to get around. There are very good camping facilities at Dawson’s Springs.

3.       Narrabri Lake is good for a walk/cycle with heaps of birdlife

4.       Yarrie Lake is a dusty but refreshing oasis that is very pretty, especially, towards the east end.

 

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