03/06/2001 - report - photos

Participants: Tom Brennan, Liz Edye, Fiona Macrae, Matt Dowle, Mike Baldwin, Nikki Shires

The end result of the day was hardly what we had planned to do. The five of us - Nikki, Matt, Mike, Fiona and I set out to walk along the Bairne Track, have lunch at Portuguese Beach and possibly do a bit of abseiling along the way. Like most of our walks things didn't follow the plan too closely.

It is not a hard walk out along the ridge to where the Bairne Track meets the Soldiers Point and Portuguese Tracks, so I persuaded the others that we could afford to continue on to Longnose Point Lookout. It is pleasant walking under a light canopy of eucalypts, along a wide easy fire trail. Not long before the lookout there was a small track branching off to the left, and it seemed to continue for some way, so I kept it in mind to look at on the way back.

The view from the lookout on a sunny day is fantastic. Hundreds of boats dot the water, and there are good views all the way up and down Pittwater, with Avalon straight across, and Scotland Island off to the right. It is the sort of place you can sit for hours and simply watch. However, hunger started to set in, so we headed off to find a place to have lunch.

Heading back along the track, we ventured down the unmarked path that led down towards Pittwater. To our surprise the track seemed to have been well-maintained once, with numerous steps cut into the side of the ridge. Towards the end it started to deteriorate, but it was easy to get around to an unnamed beach. The only other people there had waded in from boats so we settled down for lunch as the only hikers.

After lunch I went off to do a bit of exploring. First I headed up the creeks that fed into the bay. They were pretty steep and slippery and it was obviously going to be a slow climb out, so I left them for another day. I started to follow the beach around to the next bay, hopping along the rocks. I spotted the start of a path on the slope above the rocks, and after following this for a couple of hundred metres, figured that we should be able to make it around to Towlers Bay.

After playing a few games of frisbee, the tide began to turn, so we headed off around the rocks up onto the path. As it turned out the path petered out before it reached the point, but the walking along the rocks on the foreshore, was fairly easy. About half an hour of walking brought us around Towlers Bay to the start of the Towlers Bay Track, from where it was an easy walk back to the car.