A WINTER STROLL ALONG “THE LEGOLAND RIDGE” NEAR CANBERRA
Another superb winter’s day in Canberra. Minus figures overnight and about 15℃ max. A Sunday stroll and about 20 club members turned up at the meeting place at the Kambah Village Shops. Then a drive down through the Tuggeranong suburbs, across the Murrumbidgee River at Tharwa, out along the Boboyan Road and a right turn onto Apollo Road, climbing up into the hills to the camp ground at the old Honeysuckle Creek Space Tracking Station. From here we took the fire trail up onto the ridge, the eastern flank of the Orroral Valley, to the parking area at the site of the old Colimation Tower.
What a stunning morning! Brilliant sunshine, the sharpness of frost in the air, and the sparkling forest. Definitely a day for singing.
We took the footpad to the caves lying under the jumble of granite tors known as Legoland, before going on towards the rocks known as the Elephant Ears for morning tea in the shining forest. We then walked back to the cars from where we took the footpad to the huge rock known as the Belfry at the southern end of the ridge.
Exploring the caves and tors of this ridge is fun, and the views over the Orroral Valley, especially on such a beautiful day, are stunning. Many of the huge boulders along the ridge are used by rock climbers and we were not disappointed : we were able to watch two of them on a climb. Some “squeeze holes” and tunnels take one out of the main caves. Fun!
Approaching the caves, the footpad descends a slight slope and continues, but the way to the caves takes off from the footpad and quickly disappears into scrub. Oh dear! Assuming that we were all within sight of each other the leaders headed off to the caves from the track. Error 1! Error 2 was committed by others further back who committed the cardinal sin of not calling out when the person in front and the person behind one could not be seen. And of course, people were busy talking. The result was that some of the party went into the caves, while the others, assuming that the vanguard was ahead, just kept walking. Those of us who came out of the caves were surprised to find half the party missing. Well, we hurried on and eventually found the others.
After the Belfry we returned to the cars for a great afternoon tea. Thanks, Davinia, Mary, Leigh and Peter for providing such a feast.
A window onto the Orroral Valley way down below
The Orroral Valley from Legoland Ridge. In the centre of the photo is the site of the Orroral Space Tracking Station, and beyond it, to the left is the white speck of the historic Orroral Homestead
Beautiful Eucalyptus tree bark
Rock shelter along the footpad to Legoland
Looking up the Orroral Valley
Looking over the Orroral Valley through Cotter Gap to the highest peak in the A.C.T.. Bimberri Pk.
Bimberri Pk through Cotter Gap, with Split Rock on the left of the Gap.
minute fungi on a log