Overnight Hike at The Basin, West Head

Last weekend, despite ominous weather forecasts, our hiking group met fresh and early at the start of The Basin hike, West Head. The purpose of an overnight trip is to build endurance from our hiker’s legs, as well as figure out how much food and gear that we will need in Nepal.

We started with 5; myself, Deb, Di, Jade, and Dave, and headed off to complete a couple of hikes on the Western side of West Head Rd first. We did two hikes, the uneventful Challengers hike, and the more eventful and challenging Steel and Flint Beach hike. Both were short sojourns, but the latter was a steep, rocky, and spectacular walk. During this walk, apparently only 600 metres, we climbed over waist high rocks, stairs, squeezed between boulders, and ultimately broke Debs.

Kangaroo prints on our first hike of the day.

Kangaroo prints on our first hike of the day.

The early hours of our first hike, day 1

The early hours of our first hike, day 1

Day 1 - we broke The Deb

Day 1 – we broke The Deb

Dave clambering up

Dave clambering up

Jade, making the step

Jade, making the step

Di pretty happy to be over it!

Di pretty happy to be over it!

DoiZee clambering over one of the larger rocks

DoiZee clambering over one of the larger rocks

We don't believe it!

We don’t believe it!

Flint and Steel beach

Flint and Steel beach

Some of the beautiful countryside

Some of the beautiful countryside

Some of the steeper sections of our second hike, on day 1

Some of the steeper sections of our second hike, on day 1

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The day was hot and humid, making the trip along the tarmac back to the cars quite exhausting. It was in this state that we loaded up with about 15kg each, and walked a further 3km in the Basin to make camp.

Jade learning "head torch etiquette"

Jade learning “head torch etiquette”

Deb, recovered after a nap

Deb, recovered after a nap

Di brought out the Port

Di brought out the Port

A roo took my tomato!

A roo took my tomato!

Welcome to Barbara and Jen

Welcome to Barbara and Jen

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A "wobboly" at the Basin

A “wobboly” at the Basin

One of the more civilised sets of stairs from Flint and Steel beach

One of the more civilised sets of stairs from Flint and Steel beach

For Barbara, since she was only at Day 1 in spirit

For Barbara, since she was only at Day 1 in spirit

Di assisting Deb with her "crack"

Di assisting Deb with her “crack”

Deb mid-collapse

Deb mid-collapse

Barbara enjoying a Port

Barbara enjoying a Port

We had plans to do some extra hiking once in the Basin, but everyone was too exhausted.

Our first day. Only 13km but a very steep trail!

Our first day. Only 13km but a very steep trail!

Jen and Barbara joined us later that afternoon. We explored the Basin campsite, and did a stretch together, before cooking an early dinner.

Barbara brought a tarp, which we used as a picnic blanket, and we shared Di’s port, tea, and (dark) chocolate before hitting the sack around 8pm.

Our neighbours were not particularly considerate, singing and drinking until 2am, so noone slept like a baby! However we were all up and at ’em by 630am in the morning. We may have “accidentally” dropped a couple of pans near our neighbours tents….

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Looking at Aboriginal Hand prints

Looking at Aboriginal Hand prints

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A bulbous section on a tree!

A bulbous section on a tree!

Terrific view at the top

Terrific view at the top

Our lunch spot

Our lunch spot

Casurauna forest

Casurauna forest

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Debs and Barbara negotiating a tricky bit

Debs and Barbara negotiating a tricky bit

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Rainforesty section

Rainforesty section

A slug across the beach in the sun, before another steep ascent

A slug across the beach in the sun, before another steep ascent

A toy boat

A toy boat

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How they get the shopping to their houses, at Makarel beach

How they get the shopping to their houses, at Makarel beach

some steep sections, both up and down

some steep sections, both up and down

Lush parts of the hike

Lush parts of the hike

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Another hour, another great view

Another hour, another great view

Starting at the top

Starting at the top

Another wallaby

Another wallaby

Looking at Aboriginal engravings

Looking at Aboriginal engravings

Still admiring the wallabies

Still admiring the wallabies

Day 2 turned out humid as well, as Di discovered with her fluro bra...!

Day 2 turned out humid as well, as Di discovered with her fluro bra…!

Packed and ready to go Sunday morning

Packed and ready to go Sunday morning

Dave stretching his back out

Dave stretching his back out

On our second day we dropped our gear off at the cars, then meandered along the coastline to finish in time for lunch at the peak of West Head. This we completed on weary legs, energised by the views and gorgeous surrounds. We had lunch on a rocky ledge, overlooking Pittwater. From here we followed a bush track part way home, the trudged along the road for the remainder. Whilst quick, it was boring and tiresome for our sore legs and feet.

Once we were in sight of the cars, noone could stop Deb’s from running, though! She was tucked up in her car and out of there before the last of us stumbled in!

Our second day. Lots of stairs, both up and down, made it slow going

Our second day. Lots of stairs, both up and down, made it slow going

We were fortunate to only have a small amount of rain overnight. Both days were pleasant and dry. The days were made better by the good company!

You can see our adventure on YouTube: https://youtu.be/Z_EBdVExd1I 

See you next year, team!

Clare

 

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