18/01/2009 - report - photos - Fortress Canyon track notes

Participants: Tom Brennan, Rachel Grindlay, Sacha Vidler, Bel Kinneally, Dan Smith, Bec Villis, Igor Neumann, Andrew Glover, Bethany Hoye

Rachel, Sacha, Bec and I drove up to Leura to meet Bel, Dan and Igor. They were there when we arrived, and Glover and Bethany pulled up almost immediately. There had been some talk of Jonathan coming canyoning but since he wasn't waiting and no-one had heard anything from him, we headed off out the Mt Hay Road to the parking area. There were quite a few cars there, but as we walked in we passed a lot of guys carrying overnight packs heading out. They looked like they had had a bucks day/night or something similar. One had his arm in a sling!

In the end we saw no sign of anyone else ahead of us in the canyon. I was quite surprised, given the weather was almost perfect for it.

It was pretty warm wetsuiting up, and everyone was pretty keen to get into the water. The first little jump got everyone into the mood, although once the canyon opened out it was a bit of a creek walk to the next bit. The next jump was good fun, and by the time we reached the abseil, Sacha and Igor were keen to jump that too.

The rest of us abseiled, Bec for the first time in a canyon. Then there was one last good section of canyon before we reached the big drop into the Grose Valley. Signs of the fires from several years ago could still be seen across the valley. We had a leisurely lunch and paddled in the pools, before setting off for the ridge walk back to the cars. Thankfully it was warm, but not too hot. An excellent day of canyoning.