Jul-Nov 2022

The weather may have deterred potential walkers, but this delightful walk through the Ourimbah Creek Valley and the Palm Grove Nature Reserve proved rewarding for the four courageous walkers who decided to give it a go. Apart from one heavy shower, the rain mostly stayed away, though there were plenty of trees dripping. The sun even put in an appearance as we climbed a hill after lunch. We gently steamed in the saunas created by our waterproof gear.

Challenges:
• Muddy , slushy track
• Multitudes of leeches, still being located and disposed of at coffee and even after walkers arrived home
• Deep, fast flowing water in Ourimbah Creek

Highlights:
• Tall timbers in the forest of Ourimbah Creek Valley
• Two descents and three ascents all tackled with determination
• Rainforest of Palm Grove Nature Reserve
• Walking through forest wreathed in ethereal mist
• Lots of birds, some visible, some audible
• Planning and executing a successful crossing of Ourimbah Creek
• Coffee at Mangrove Mountain Memorial Club, snug and dry while watching the rain sheeting down outside

Challenges
2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel CreekCrossing           2022 09 30 PlusWalk WendyC CrossingOurimbahCreek P1000626
Walking in supportive pairs, linking arms and using 1 pole each, we took our time, one step at a time, to safely and successfully cross the largest creek we were faced with (Hazel)2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel LeechesWe first noticed the leeches at morning tea and then we saw hundreds of them! They were the most prolific wildlife we encountered, & a lot hitched a ride back to Sydney with us!!! (Hazel)
                                                                                                           
Highlights
2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel FourWalkersattrackhead   2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel FollowingGNWSigns
                            All four walkers near the wet and misty track head                                                                                                     We followed the GNW Sign
          2022 09 30 PlusWalk WendyC TreeinOurimbahCreekValley P1000623           2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel LomandraLongifolia          2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel Lichencoveredtreebark
(1) One of the many fine trees in the Ourimbah Creek Valley (2) Long or Spiny-headed Mat-rush Lomandra longifolia (3) Lichen covered tree bark
  2022 09 30 PlusWalk WendyC Oneofthedescents P1000633  2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel Horses
                               One of the many descents                                                                 Even the locals were in wet weather gear
Rainforest of Palm Grove Nature Reserve
     2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel InsidePalmGroveNatureReserve    2022 09 30 PlusWalk WendyC PalmGroveNatureReserve P1000636
                                                                          Aptly named Palm Grove Nature Reserve
    2022 09 30 PlusWalk WendyC funghiPalmGroveNatureReserve P1000641  2022 09 30 PlusWalk NickS CrossingOffShootofOurimbahCreek IMG 0430 1  2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel OffShootofOurimbahCreek
                                   Fabulous fungi                                                                       Boots ON to cross this off shoot of Ourimbah Creek!                                     
2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel Ferns   2022 09 30 PlusWalk Hazel TwistedBranches
                                  A mass of ferns as we headed uphill                                                                                                      Twisted branches
2022 09 30 PlusWalk WendyC SillyQuestion P1000645                                                                                                                                                Silly question
Congratulation to all walkers on some fine team work and for bringing a can do attitude and good humour to the walk.  Well done Wendy C and Hazel for great leadership and keeping all walkers safe (Ed.).

Walkers:  Wendy C, Haazel, Pragati and Nick S

Words Wendy C

Photos Hazel (1, 3-5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 15-17), Wendy C (2, 6, 9, 12, 13, 18), Nick S (14)

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