Saturday 20 September: A-Z Namadgi Tours – L/M. Second attempt at a 54km mountain bike ride in the Southern Namadgi. From the Old Boboyan Rd (South) car park to Lone Pine Homestead, then probably Grassy Creek FT to Westermans, Waterhole FT to Waterhole Hut and on to Bulls Flat FT and so back to the Naas Creek valley. Maybe up the Old Boboyan Rd to Yankee Hat car park. A little geocaching on the way. Maps: Yaouk and Shannons Flat. Leader: John Evans, email@example.com, 0417 436 877. Transport: Own car and bike. Further details at www.johnevans.id.au/wp/. Emergency contact details must be registered/provided to book. Book by 2pm Thursday prior.
3 of us drove in 2 cars to the Old Boboyan Rd (South) car park.
Well, it didn’t turn out like the above description at all!!
Distance: 18.5km ride + 7.1km walk | Climb: 350m + 245m | Time: 8.00am-10.50pm (2hrs 50mins), then 11.20am-2.20pm (3hrs) with 25 mins of breaks | Grading: L/E-M; M(9) (subjective grading)
Photographs are available, where you can start a large sized slideshow.
Download the Google Earth .kmz file here.
Away at 8am. Overcast skies after leaving a sunny Canberra. Quite cool, needing long johns, beanie and gloves. A gentle ride in to Lutons Crutching Shed, the 6.4km taking 30mins. The first surprise was the start of reconstruction of the drop log yards at the front of the shed. It will take a bit of getting used to. The corrugated iron sheet has been re-fixed to the side of the shed. Roger (Marmaduke Rothschild) did the nearby cache whilst I went up to where I was camped a fortnight ago and found my tent pegs. Joy o joy.
We then wandered down to inspect the Crawford Homestead site and adjacent orchard.
Back on our bikes, we returned to the fire trail junction and headed down Grassy Creek Fire Trail to Lone Pine Homestead. We first visited the Baby Crawford plaque whilst Roger logged the cache up the hill.
Back across the fire trail, we found WP1 of GC1DZYD A-Z Namadgi Tours. Yes, it was 15m away from the stump I hollowed out last fortnight. We emptied the contents and followed the instructions according to my interpretation. But after the arithmetic, the check sums were out. Rats! I’m going to retire from geocaching.
All I could think of was to continue on along the Grassy Creek Fire Trail for a ride. But we only got a couple of hundred metres until one the the bikes fell apart. Not a good day. We tried to put it together and turned round, but it only lasted a couple of minutes. A slow trip back to the cars with one of the bikes only having one pedal. Called by David Brayshaws cairn. 18.5km ride and 350m climb in 2hrs 50mins, including caching time and bike repairs. Morning tea.
Thank goodness Roger had a few geocaches in his GPSr, so we drove to the southern border.
We walked in along the border fire trail. We first found and logged GC49YNW les terminator, then a kilometre further along, logged GC49YNQ la louve. Some interesting things nearby. A couple of 1″ gal iron pipe border markers (with no lockspits) as we walked up to Burnt Hill. I thought I’d seen them before but, on looking through my waypoints after coming home, I’d not visited T40 before.
Coming off Burnt Hill to the SE, we logged GC49YNH en haut. There was no challenge in retrieving the cache, as it was lying on the ground in the clear. Down at the bottom of the big hill, we logged GC49YN0 outpost gamma.
It was 1.05pm, so we turned about, trudged back up the hill and soon found lunch.
Wandered back to the cars. 7.1km walk and 345m climb in 3hrs, including 25min lunch.
So some small wins – retrieved my good tent pegs, 4 geocaches (Roger got 6), an interesting thing and a border marker. However a huge fail – how many years will it take me to do GC1DZYD A-Z Namadgi Tours, at 1 waypoint per 2 visits?
Post Script: Everyone likes a mystery revealed and a happy ending, so here it is:
The ‘interesting’ thing mentioned above was the W40 blaze, which had sadly fallen out of the tree. Roger found it propped up around the back of the tree. Oh how I was tempted to put it under my arm, but instead contacted Brett McNamara and suggested it could be picked up by a Ranger and didn’t blog it at the time in case someone else was tempted. It has now been rescued and is in safe hands. One day it will be on display to the public, along with its big brother (now that’s another interesting story yet to be revealed!).
Back at home, I had a whinging debrief with my dear wife. She has a prophetic gift – while I was away today she wrote:
Oh have you seen the faster pastor
Striding down the track,
Determined look upon his face,
Clothed all in black?
He marches on with flock behind him,
Bleating for a stop,
But not a whit he cares for wimps –
He’ll lead until they drop.
With fearsome gaze he searches bushes,
Trees and under rocks,
His single-minded purpose is
To find that plastic box!
With crazed eyes and lips a-tremble
He gives a tortured cry
“Oh no! My GPS has carked it
And I don’t know why!”
He limps back home, his countenance downcast,
Tears upon his face.
“It beat me, but next time I’ll find
That blinkin’ geocache!”
3 riders – Roger E, Quentin M, me.
Post Script: Thanks to the generous cache owner of A-Z Namadgi Tours, I have been set on the path of right(eousness). As big Arnie says – “I’ll be back.”