From An Unplanned Bushwalk to a carefully constructed course.
Or so I thought
Yet despite laying down for two hours upon our return, the Angourie Walking Track was an adventurous trek through a coastal wilderness I’m very glad we undertook before leaving this lovely area.
When I was investigating the information regarding the track, I noticed a message on the website that stated the stairs at the end of Angourie Beach were closed and therefore you had to enter the track from the Mara Creek picnic area.
But forces greater than ourselves compelled us to think the message could have been out of date and ask: “How hard could it be to get off the beach?”
We quickly found out that it can be very difficult indeed.
Angourie Beach was the first National Surfing Reserve in New South Wales to be gazetted and is famous for its right-hand breaks and raw natural beauty. Approx. one kilometre long, it was a delight to see the evidence of crabs and pippis as we slowly sauntered along the sand.
Although we both agreed that if we couldn’t get off the beach and had to turn back, we would do just that, Dean must have had his fingers crossed when that concession was agreed upon.
After all these years together, you’d think I’d be awake to his child-like half-baked promises. He had no intention of turning back and decided we could ‘carve our own path’ either around the headland and surely onto the track, or we’d go straight up the embankment.
The rocks beckoned, stable, sturdy structures no match for bushwalking warriors such as ourselves. There were black boulders of basalt (at least I thought they were basalt) and waves crashing onto other firm, flat features abounding with masses of moist, mossy growths, perfect for slipping and sliding.
Oh and that’s exactly what happened, but not to the usual victim of such antics. This time it was Dean who lost his footing and landed on his rear. (He’s ok, nothing damaged or broken beyond his pride.) Not to be deterred at all, within moments he found a suitable area where we could ‘climb’ up onto the path. We’d seen other walkers going past, up there nestled in the safety of the actual track. It was so close we could almost touch it.
All I’m going to say about what happened next is, thank goodness for the stubborn spinifex grasses I used to haul my butt, 45° straight up those 15 metres.
It felt like a 60° slope and 100 metres.
Huffing and puffing, stopping only to pray I wouldn’t lose my footing and slide all the way back from whence I came, Dean cheering me on agonising step after agonising step, when I finally reached the top I kindly reminded my wonderful husband that The Angourie Walking Track is a level 2 graded walk. Of cause he just laughed.
The Shelley Beach Picnic Area (and breakfast) was our goal, so we both had a good giggle at ourselves and set off following the actual pathway.
From Mara Creek, the return trip is 10 kilometres through undulating terrain. Adding in the extra distance from Angourie Surfing Reserve, I’m guessing we walked a little over 12 kilometres. A short walk really compared to other trails we’ve tackled over the years.
The ocean views along the pathway were spectacular. Here’s the featured image I used above. It’s Shelley Beach with Brooms Head just visible in the background. You can click on it to open a larger view and see the entire photo.
We leave Yamba today, heading south to Grafton where we will be landlocked for a few days. I hope Dean can survive 48 hours without a surf.