Friday, November 16, 2012

Fri 16 Nov - Kalkite NSW

Today, we had different activities planned. Hans wanted to do the tough Summit loop track, too much for Di, and Di volunteered to drive her Uncle Holger, to Bega for a special Xray and Ultrasound for a problem shoulder.

As we were doing different things during the day, hence partly parallel blogs.


We headed off at 8.15am for an 10.45m appointment in Bega.

The drive to Bega and back is via Cooma and over Brown Mountain. 330km return trip. No photos (Di was driving) but if you can imagine the last 50km stretch to Bega is a slow climb up the Great Dividing Range then a windy pass down the escarpment to the coast (from about 1200m to sea level). The section of the road is a bit tough to drive - lots of bends at 35km/h - but beautiful rainforest and scenery.

Anke accompanied us in the car so it was quite the family talk fest for the nearly 5 hours of total driving. Perhaps a good thing Hans was not there!

All seemed to go well in Bega so we headed for Lunch at a nice Turkish Doner Kebab in Cooma, 100km+ back, then some grocery shopping and home by 3pm.

A quiet few hours until Hans' return, with Di cooking dinner and prepping for an indian feast tomorrow night.

Now his story...


I was up early to get ready for my Mount Kosciuszko walk. The idea was to take the car to Charlotte Pass, then do the loop anti clockwise, I.e. Main Range Track to the Mount K and the Summit Walk back. The whole loop clocks in at some 20km, if you don't divert. I hiked 26 km with my sidetrips according to Runkeeper.

At 8.45am, I parked the campervan at Charlotte Pass and began my journey. This is a hike I have only done once before, and that was some 20+ years ago. I remember that I really enjoyed it at the time.

While the Summit Walk is along a relatively straight maintenance trail and covers the last 7-8 km, the Main Range Track is tough.

Just downhill from Charlotte Pass at the very start, you need to cross Snowy River. The river is full after a good winter with lots of snow, so there is no choice but to take off the boots and wade across. Holger had lent me a pair of fishing shoes, which he uses to stand in the water while fishing. So that helped, although the grip was still not superb.

Then there is still much snow on the ground, including on the track in many, many places. In one spot, the angle was 45 degrees or so, and after looking down, down, down for how long one would slide if one lost the grip, I decided to walk around it (at the bottom).
Of course, it wouldn't be Snowy Mountains if it wasn't a lot and long of up and a lot and long of down.
And, I should add, you are extremely exposed up there in the alpine country. Alpine weather, as we all know, is notorious to change at very short notice. However, today started off as a mostly sunny day and then changed to mostly cloudy. At one time, it seemed like rain was on its way as it turned very dark for a while, but that changed too.

Fantastic views though... This is from " the saddle" looking into Victoria.

Blue lake...
I didn't see or meet one single person on the trail until I came to the "highway" between Rawson Pass and Mount Kosciuszko. Then suddenly, there was a succession of people going up or coming down the summit.
BTW, even there, they had to negotiate snow on the path...

The Mount Kosciuszko summit, and the hike up to it, are both disappointments. The hike up circles around the hill like a spiral and the summit is "littered" with rocks. In fact, you can stand just below Mount Kosciuszko and still not get that you are next to Australia's highest mountain (at 2228m).
Anyway, here are some pics... Yes, it was cold!

As discussed earlier, from Rawson Pass back to Charlotte Pass is along a maintenance trail and is relatively dull given the fantastic scenery along the Main Range Track. There is a hut along the trail, called Seamans Hut.
This was easily the toughest walk on this trip, and I was quite tired when I got back home around 4.45pm. Of course, there is also an hour's drive to Charlotte Pass from Kalkite and obviously an hour to get back as well.
Anke and Holger had bowling on tonight, so we had the place to ourselves for a while.

Di suggested a hot bath for the sore muscles (the sore overall old body) and that did wonders. This was then followed up with Penne Al Salmone (as Salmon Pasta is called at our local Italian in Manly). Cooked to perfection.

After all that, Hans is now a tired old man... In bed by 8.30pm. Di is also pooped and follows suit... Good night.


No comments:

Post a Comment