Branxton to Blackheath (Blue Mountains) - Day 230

Trip Start Jan 31, 2008
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Australia  , New South Wales,
Thursday, October 9, 2008

During the first few hours of this morning I drove south through the Wollemi and Yengo national parks towards Penrith, the gateway town to the Blue Mountains. The Wollemi national park contains a recently discovered Wollemi pine tree which was thought to have gone extinct millions of years ago. Some absailers stumbled upon this ancient and strange looking species in a remote canyon in the 90's. The location of the tree is a closely guarded secret for obvious reasons. Would love to see it though.

My first stop in the Blue mountains were the Wentworth Falls and surrounding walking tracks. I took a short walk on the Valley of the Waters trail which curved its way along a ridge in the valley. Saw the impressive Wentworth falls from a lookout. Another fine day with a few cotton wool clouds casting a shadow on the Jamison valley floor. The Jamison valley is covered with mature gum tree forest, the whole valley is a dark shade of green with the occasional grey rocky outcrop making up the scene. The Blue mountains are extremely impressive, a lot more spectacular than I imagined to be honest.

Moved onto Sublime Point and Gordon falls lookout in the village Leura. Then to the famous Three Sisters at Echo point in Katoomba just before sunset. Probably the most recognisable Blue Mountains landmark. I walked along a short trail which connects these three huge lumps of rock via series of bridges. Great views of the sisters and the surrounding mountains from this vantage point. Pretty cool that you can actually walk through one of Australia's iconic natural rock formations. Echo point is very touristy with bus loads of tourists being dropped off to take photos from the observation platforms. I might return early tomorrow for a quieter look around.

Parked up at a rest stop in Blackheath for the evening. There are signs saying "No Camping", but I'm I technically camping sleeping in a car? I'll risk it and if I get caught I'll argue my point. Blackheath sits at over 1000 metres, should be another cold night in the car.

I'm planning to spend one more day tomorrow in these beautiful mountains just outside Sydney, there's lots more to explore here. Bought myself a map of the area today which should help me find the other gems.
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