Sunday, 21 July 2019

Rifle Range Road 2019

Today we're taking the walk that had to be cancelled a couple of weeks ago, Rifle Range Road at Sandford.

The forecast is for gale force winds later in the day, but it doesn't look too bad when we leave Kingston.

We park at the junction of Rifle Range Road and Gellibrand Drive where there's plenty of parking.

Bob is our leader and takes the decision to walk along the beach first as the breeze isn't unpleasant at the moment.

Down Rifle Range to the beach
 You can drive down to a small parking area just off the beach, but we like to build up our kilometres and walk down.

Mortimer Bay with Maria Point in the distance

Gorringes Beach, mainly made of small shells
I wonder where everyone sits if there's a flock of birds?
 We'll be walking the length of the beach which curves out of sight until we reach the end which is a bird sanctuary and fenced off. Here is a wide sandy section leading up the an inland track that could be walked in bad weather.

Turning right, we head for a junction with a good number of comfortable rocks available for Morning Tea.

Morning Tea

Cloud capped Mount Wellington in the distance
Morning Tea complete, we head along a track leading along the foreshore of Ralphs Bay. This is part of the Tangara Trail walking tracks in this area.

We follow the track for a while before turning uphill to Gellibrand Drive, turning left for a short distance to pick up another part of the tracks, leading down.

You can have a bit of variety on these walks
This track passes along the bottom of several properties, not all friendly.

I'm pretty sure this isn't a dog, plus it doesn't look particularly dangerous

On we go, heading for lunch
We find our spot at the end of a road the track crosses, complete with rocks. Peggy offered me a spot on her rock, but as it was a knife edge, I declined, preferring to walk around looking uncomfortable to make the others feel guilty. It didn't work.

Afterwards, we continue on. Looking back at previous posts about walks here, it appears this was called the Emu walk for obvious reasons.


On the Emu track

I think we see eye to eye
This track leads back to our Morning Tea spot where we turn right, heading back towards the far end of the beach.

But, after a short distance, we head off to follow several small tracks through the bush.

Gorringes Beach is just to our left

Walking along here, I hear a cry of "Cyclist!" and move off to the side while about ten 11-12 y.o. girls and boys on mountain bikes come past.

I must say they all said "Hello" and told us how many were behind them. Very polite. Great to see them outside and not sitting looking at their screens. I suppose that will change for some in the next couple of years.

We continue on, crossing a large drain and the road again for another track just up from our crossing point. This leads up a nice steady climb to the top of a hill. We're on our way back to the cars.

Looking back down

Looking up

At the top, we cross another road to continue down the other side.
The track crosses a series of courts with multiple driveways leading off.

Going down

Looking back up
It's not long before we reach the cars.

Great day for a walk, despite the weather forecast and Bob took us on an interesting route.

We had 10 walkers and covered 13.74km in 4hrs.

Many other tracks in the area for future walks.

Click here to download GPX file

Sunday, 14 July 2019

Lenah Valley 2019

Today we're walking at Lenah Valley from the end of Lumeah Avenue for the first time since 2014. Parking at the end of the avenue, we enter the Lumeah Fire trail on a cool but clear day.

Not a large group

This is a time of year many of our members are away.

View from the beginning of the track
 Looking over Moonah and beyond.

Easy walking, but I know what's coming

We reach a spot where we leave the track and begin to climb and it gets steeper as we get higher. Finally we reach another fire trail, walking up a short distance for an early Morning Tea.

We started up from down in the tree line below

You wouldn't know we're not far from houses

View looking back

Morning Tea
This area was under water eons ago and you can find many fossil impressions in the rocks. So, while the others enjoy their break, I start up the next climb, checking out the rocks along the way look for old fossils.

First rock with shell impressions I found
Farther up I see this large rock beside the track. It shows a cross section of the geology of this area.

Large rock showing the layers

Looking down the track

There's still a bit of a climb

I continue to climb, looking for some more old fossils.

Not them...

...but these and the ones in the photo below

The rest of the group arrive and we continue up to a track junction, turning right and heading towards a spot overlooking Tolosa Park. Bob wants to check out something.

We walk back up the hill for a short distance, turning off at a spot Bob took note of earlier. The terrain here is very barren and rocky. Poor soil makes it difficult for anything to grow, plus it had a bushfire through here a couple of years ago.

We find the Priest Fire Trail, turning right to enter Wellington Park.

We follow the fire trail to a point where a vehicle gate near a house takes us onto a road. Walking down this takes us to another unmarked road where we head up.

Unmarked roads
These roads are private roads and you enter off Lenah Valley road. Somewhere up here we turnoff onto an unmarked track, making a loop that takes us back to the house and gate we passed before.

There is new wire fencing installed around the reserve areas. In the example above the pink oval shows a marking tape hanging from the bottom wire. It's at least two metres above the ground!

Turning off the road just below a house, we head down

Not a trail but where a phone cable has been installed
When we reach the gate we came through earlier, we walk down an unmarked fire trail for lunch.

Heading for lunch

Looking back

After lunch we walk back a short distance to follow Bob down a little track.

Unmarked track leading down

We gradually make our way back to the cars.

We had seven walkers and covered 6.07km in 3hrs. A short walk, but a couple of steep climbs and very interesting. Bob did his best to make it longer.

The lack of some track and road names made it very confusing as to where we walked.

Click Here to see animated track.

Click here to download GPX file