Salisbury – Mount Warby : December 14

This was my second ever time at leading a mid-week walk for the club, and while numbers may have been small, the calibre of the walkers were amongst the highest ever encountered.

The original planned walk was the Warby Ovens NP at Killawarra; however, a last-minute check of this area the day before proved a saviour, as the sign-post said “Park Closed for Public Safety”.

The new proposed walk for the day, sent out to the walkers booked in, would now be the Salisbury Falls Walk to Mount Warby, returning via Alpine Views Track. No mention was made that the walk was still on, despite public safety concerns knowing that Andy was attending.

The beginning of the Salisbury Falls Walk was picturesque and quite mystical. We walked amongst the unfortunately plentiful St John’s Wort, with morning sunshine catching the yellow petals. Hundreds of Monarch butterflies darted about as they escorted us towards the Falls. One very large kangaroo was unconcerned at our presence, and continued his morning grazing. Further ahead a small group of kangaroos looked on inquisitively.

I have walked the Salisbury Falls Track numerous times, but today was the first time I can remember a significant amount of water flowing over the Falls. Sonia and Sandy who had frequented here earlier, mentioned the Falls had even been more spectacular then with the abundance of spring rainfall. We made our way carefully along the narrow track looking over the creek below.

After crossing the bridge located at the top of the Falls, we continued following the creek, before crossing it again and heading towards the Boilerwood Track junction. From here it was just a short walk before we turned onto a bush track which leads towards Mount Warby. Not far along this track, a large fallen tree made the ideal group seat for morning tea.

After morning tea, we resumed our walk, passing a solitary walker coming in the opposite direction. Most of us said our pleasantries and continued walking. Andy is not most of us, and the rest of the group continued walking to a small open area with good views, and waited for Andy.

The mountains were visible in the far distance, as was much of the Warby Range State Park in the immediate area towards Mount Glenrowan. Mount Warby (490m) was not far away, and it was there we had another short break.

We resumed our walk following Friends Track, which would lead us to the Alpine Views Track. While much of the signage in the park is hit and miss, somehow the Alpine Views Track has ended up with two good signposts in the same spot. It was along this section that a small brown snake was encountered. Fortunately, Carmel and I obliviously passed the snake before Liz stopped and pointed it out to the group.

Bull ants were out in force today. Must have had something to do with that saying, “make hay while the sun shines”. Long story short, one of them got into Andy’s trousers. He had to act fast. So down they came, with the Split Enz song and cry coming from Sandy, “I see red, I see red, I see red!” Mission completed; we were able to resume walking.

Along the Alpine Views Track the possible forecast showers came, necessitating some of us to put on raincoats. This first lot of showers passed soon enough, and lunch was taken alongside the track.

As we got lower towards the Boilerwood Track again, the rockier outcrop along this track turned back into fields of yellow. Numerous wildflowers were out in abundance too. There were the usual ones – yellow, white, pink, red, violet, and lilac. Not purple. We heard kookaburras, mainly when we were walking in the rain, and magpies seemed to be everywhere.

Along the Boilerwood Track we met the Salisbury Falls junction and returned via the way we came. Out to make a real day of it, Andy took a little tumble, but was soon back on his feet. Our very large kangaroo looked as if he hadn’t moved off his spot this whole time, and was there to greet us again.

Once at the cars, Andy presented his version of Pat’s afternoon tea to the group. You had to be there. Today was a great day of walking, featuring all the W’s. Warby’s, wildflowers, waterfalls, and wildlife. The leisurely 10.5km was completed in under five hours, and thanks to those who attended. A special thank-you to Andy for a day of entertainment.


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