Talaterang Mountain (5-6 Aug 2023)
It has been almost thirteen years since my only previous visit to this area. I had very little memory of the trip, and hadn’t taken many photos so couldn’t jog my memory that way either. It’s definitely worth doing before another 13 years are up! Unlike some walks where you pop out at the end and you get a view, this one has views for the majority of the time.
I was a bit surprised at how new, fancy and long the boardwalk was at the start of the walk. The walk out to Mt Bushwalker lookout is very straightforward and can be recommended to almost anyone who is in the area.
Once we left the boardwalk, and shiny metal direction arrows we followed the cliffs around to the top of Gadara Pass for morning tea. There’s some pretty straight-forward scrambling to get down Gadara Pass. This has been supplemented by copious amounts of cord. The top 3m would be a bit tricky without the fixed rope (though we managed without it in 2010), but the rest of the pass does not really need the cord.
However someone obviously got a good deal on cord and wanted to put it to use in the bush, as there is a lot of it. Cord was anywhere there was a vague slope and in some places where there wasn’t any slope at all.
Combined with the cord someone has gone to town with orange spray paint. In some sections every rock on the track was sprayed orange. Where the track turned corners there were spray painted lines or arrows. You would need to make a concerted effort to get lost – but it was very intrusive. Better or worse than pink tape? I guess it depends if it washes off over time. In places where the spray paint wasn’t enough (!) there was fluro yellow tape on the trees.
The forecast for Saturday held a fair bit of rain. So it wasn’t that surprising that the blue skies were soon full of clouds and by the time we made it to the summit of Talaterang Mountain we were in the cloud.
The next hour we covered about 700m – probably everyone’s favourite section of the day (not). What’s not to love about 3m high sword grass to wade through, followed by head height ferns and then a banksia graveyard.
But after that things got easier as we could pick our way along rocky platforms near the cliff edge.
I was thrilled that the cloud cleared overnight and I got up at first light to watch the light slowly reveal the amazing views near our campsite.
Sunday was mainly retracing our steps – though I took us around the worst of the sword grass and ferns on the return. According to the GPS we were only about 25m west of where we’d been the day before – what a difference 25m makes!
I don’t think we’d realised quite how jarring the orange spots were until we returned to them on Sunday afternoon. Wow, someone really had a lot of orange paint.
It was definitely one of those weekends which proves you shouldn’t be put off by weather forecasts as we didn’t really get any rain while we were walking.