15/07/2004 - report - photos
Participants: Tom Brennan, Fiona Macrae
Arriving at Hornsby at 10:17am for a 10:19am train to Wondabyne, Fee and I thought we were cutting it a bit fine when we saw a train already in the station. But true to CityRail form, it was an earlier train, and we still had a bit to wait.
There were all of five people getting off at Wondabyne, all bushwalkers. The others had full packs, so I assume they were heading to do a section of the Great North Walk. Wondabyne is a curious little place. The station is all of about 10m long. I could see maybe a couple of houses, a couple of cranes, and a jetty. Maybe that's all there is. There are houses across the other side of the river, and maybe they boat to the station and catch a train from there. Otherwise, it's pretty much for the bushwalkers.
Following the directions on the sign, we climbed up the track to the fire trail and along the fire trail to where our fire trail branched off. After a little while the fire trail disappeared and we were following an obvious track. After about an hour of walking we reached a rocky platform with nice views and stopped for a break. With the exception of the scar of the F3, we could just about see nothing but bush in all directions. However, far to the south we could see sunlight glinting of the roof of the Baha'i temple in Terrey Hills.
A little bit of down and up and we were crossing the top of Mt Pindar. No views from here, as it has a large flat top and is covered mostly with low-growing eucalypts. At the far end there are a few large boulders that offer good views of the Hawkesbury. After a short break here, we headed down the path to what was supposed to be a nice swimming hole. The lack of rain obviously hadn't helped as the pool was not much more than a foot deep. Lucky it was winter and we weren't up for a swim anyway!
Continuing along the track we quickly reached Pindar Cave. This is a spectacular sandstone overhang maybe 50m long with plenty of space to sleep if you desired. We sat in the sun for a while with the light filtering through the trees, before deciding we should move on and find a lunch spot. After a bit of bush-bashing we found the track down to Pindar Creek and the waterfall - which was dripping a little, rather than falling. Still, it was a nice spot for lunch, and probably even nicer in summer.
In an exploratory mood, I thought we should head back up the creek. Fee, still scarred by bush-bashing memories of Ettrema Creek in Morton National Park, thought we should just take the track. However, she didn't protest loudly or vehemently enough, and up the creek we headed. In the end it was pretty easy. The burnt out banksias offered little resistance, and even as it got a bit denser upstream, it was never much of a bush-bash, more a path-pick.
Back at the pool we retraced our steps back to the station. Knowing we were going to miss the next train, we wasted a bit of time along the way as there was over an hour-and-a-half to the train after that. We ended up making the station with twenty minutes to spare, but better that than missing the train and waiting another two hours!