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Mount Konangaroo

Blue Mountains National Park, November 2003
Danny Yee, Vic Gosbell, Andrew Molnar
(thumbnails link to larger images)

a bushfire-injured tree
a red-bellied black snake
We drove up on the Thursday night, had dinner in Katoomba (at Cafe Zuppa), then drove down to the Megalong Creek campsite; Vic put up his fly while Andrew and I slept in the van.

In the morning we drove to the Dunphy car park and set off around 7am. Down Carlon Creek, up Blackhorse, past the Werrigal Mountains, and down Yellow Pup to the Cox's and Kanangaroo Clearing -- all familiar territory from our last walk. We started up the ridge towards Guouogang, but ended up camping early (around 5pm) on top of Mt Konangaroo. It was drizzling and a bit of an anti-social camp, with each of us under our own fly. (Andrew had cold food, Vic used a solid-fuel stove, and I managed to cook my rice on a tiny fire under my fly, lit with the aid of a small solid-fuel tablet.)

separate flies

In the morning we started off up Guouogang, but the rain became more intense and the mist settled in -- with visibility quite low, we were worried about navigation if we tried to go over the Krungle Bungles, so we turned back just before Mt Bulogawar. As if to prove we'd made the right decision, we then took the wrong ridge going down! But this turned out to be an easier ridge than the one over Mt Konangaroo, and it brought us out further up the Cox's anyway, which was where we wanted to be.

an eastern long-necked turtle
It was a nice walk up the Cox's, with the rain lifting and even a few patches of sunlight. Along the way we encountered an Eastern Long-Necked Turtle, Chelodina longicollis. It was about 30cm long, not counting the neck, which we never really saw since it kept its head in. This was the first tortoise any of us had seen in the wild and, coming on top of two red-bellied black snakes and a goanna the previous day, made the trip something of a herpetology expedition!

We ended up camping early again, this time on the big camp site on Breakfast Creek. It rained again -- quite heavily for a while -- but luckily I'd managed to gather some wood first and again cooked my dinner on a fire under the fly.

The next morning Breakfast Creek had risen quite noticeably -- it had been totally dry at the junction with Carlon Creek when we first passed, and dry for nearly a kilometre at its mouth, but now it was flowing energetically. We were soon back at the car, and then it was back to Katoomba for a solid breakfast.

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