I was lucky to have a day off in the middle of the week and do stage 9 of the Great North Walk, Wondabyne to Kariong. A lovely cool day and an easy walk, about 14km. Another early start but it was good to drive down the freeway and not be on my way to work.
We caught the train to Wondabyne and were greeted by Glossy black cockatoos feeding in the trees as we started up the hill.
We retraced our steps part of the way from the last walk and then headed up towards Mooney Mooney creek. The expressway north crosses this creek way below and provided background noise for most of the day.
It also passes alongside Pyles Creek gorge and was initially going to go through the gorge but sense prevailed and a beautiful spot was saved.
We walked up one side of this gorge to Girakool, a small water fall and picnic area where we had lunch and were joined by the local wallaby for a photo opportunity, then walked back down the other side of the gorge.
There were lots of rock overhangs and special plants which of course I have forgotten the names of but the pictures are good.
One feature of this area is of course the rock, Sydney sandstone. There were all sorts of interesting shapes of rocks and plants growing out of and on top of bare rock and not much else.
There was an indigenous rock carving of a man on one rock shelf still visible.
Many plants still blooming and orchids and ferns in the gorge were very precious remnants of a bygone time. And a native cockroach.
The walk ended at Kariong where we had to catch a bus back to Gosford train station to get back to Hornsby, at least then I had time for a quick snooze before driving home.