Five days hiking the Southern section of Wilson’s Prom.
Hike thirteen of 2019
I was going to do this hike solo but as you would know I’ve been loving my hiking that I’ve been doing with new and old hiking friends this year so l put it up in a group on Facebook to see if anyone wanted to join me and l got two ladies that could join me for the full hike and one other for the last two days.
Day one – Tidal River to Sealers Cove
I had to park my car at the overnight hiker car park and catch the bus up to Telegraph Saddle to start my hike, today l hiked solo as l was to meet the ladies at Sealers Cove that night.
Even though it’s only a three hour hike to Sealers Cove it took me another half an hour to get there as l tried to take my time and stop when l needed to rest. Which l actually found hard to do and l think l over did it (by the time l got into Sealers Cove my knee was sore and l was thinking the worst).
About an hour into the hike you reach the top of Windy Saddle and its all down hill then. It’s a good place to stop and rest.
Even though it was a hot day, when l started going down the other side of the mountain I was out of the sun and it got a lot cooler as you go into Ferny Glade.
I stopped again at about the two hour mark at some rocks on the path, there is also a small cave to the left of the track which l decided against checking out this time around due to the fact l was hiking solo. Last time l walked this track we went into the cave a little but it gets quite narrow and not too safe.
When l reached the Boardwalk that crosses Sealers Swamp l knew l was getting closer to the end, l really should of rested here before crossing the Swamp as it’s a lot longer then l remember and no where to rest until you get to the end.
Once you reach the beach you only have a short walk to camp but still need to cross the creek.
Because l actually checked out the tide times this time around l knew l would be crossing Sealers Creek at low tide and was very glad for the low tide. But l still had to remove my shoes to get across.
Being school holidays it was very busy at Sealers Cove but l was able to find a spot to put up three tents and just hoped no one came along that tried to take the two spots l had eyed out for the two ladies that would be coming into camp later that afternoon.
After setting up my tent the ladies arrived so l didn’t need to panic for too long, before we knew it it was time for dinner and bed, the possums at Sealers Cove are huge and they love trying to get into your tent to steal your food but we were all lucky that night, but they did make a lot of noise and one managed to scare me when l got up to go to the loo, he was on the steps to the toilets and didn’t want to move so l could go past.
Day Two – Sealers Cove to Little Waterloo Bay
I woke up early on day two with my knee still sore and concerned about the days hiking, but also having those awful negative thoughts again about my up and coming Larapinta hike in June, will l be okay? Will my knee hold up? Will l slow everyone up? Will the ladies feel like I’m slowing them down? Will they regret coming with me? Can l do nineteen days of hiking with my knee? Have I bitten more than I can chew? Oh my head was a mess.
I decided it was best l hike solo that morning to see if l could clear some of my thoughts and it was also my dad’s birthday so l knew l wouldn’t be great company. I let the ladies know l would take off early and see them at Little Waterloo Bay that afternoon, they were okay with it and l felt they understood, so off l went to start day two of my hike.
The climb out of Sealers wasn’t as tough as l thought it wound be and l actually enjoyed the climb, when l got to the top l stopped to take in my surroundings and enjoy the view, to also think of dad and l did a bit of crying and then a lot of smiling to think of how far I’ve come in the last two years. I know my dad would be proud.
Once l reached Refuge Cove l stopped for a bite to eat and rest before the next climb.
I’ve camped at Refuge Cove before and remember that it’s a lovely spot to camp, there are two spots, one for hikers and another for boaters. I have to say I prefer the boaters camping ground.
I loved this days hiking, it had so many beautiful views of the ocean, and it wasn’t as hard on my knee as l thought it was going to be.
Once l made it into Little Waterloo Bay and found a great spot for the three of us the other ladies weren’t too far behind me. We had a few cheeky magpies and a kitten, yep that’s right a kitten 😳 at our camp spot but it was perfect and close to the toilets but not close to the main camping areas.
As it started to get dark l thought we were lucky to have no one else setting up their tents near by but then a few hikers started to walk in with their headtorches on and one after another the tent sites all filled up.
Again it got dark early and before we knew it it was time for bed. The silly hikers across from us left their rubbish out overnight and the possums helped themselves to the bags, even dragging one bag into the tree.
Day Three – Little Waterloo Bay to Roaring Meg
After enjoying a relaxing breakfast we headed off to start the hike to Roaring Meg, I hadn’t done this part of Wilson’s Prom so it was new to me but I did know it would be another big climb at the start. I’m not a lover of sand and the first 2kms we had to walk the length of Waterloo Beach until we reached the start of the climb up the South East Walking Track. It was a hard climb but we all managed and the views were beautiful.
Today’s walk took us past the Lighthouse which I decided not to go and investigate. Just means I’ll have to come back another time. While the other two ladies dropped there packs and headed to the Lighthouse I had a rest before making my way to Roaring Meg.
I found today’s hike for me the hardest, maybe because it was longer, maybe it was the climb at the start but when I got into Roaring Meg I was ready for a hot drink and to remove my boots. Roaring Meg has some great spots to camp by the creek but to do that means you have to climb the stairs to get to the loo at the top, I chose to camp at the top of the stairs so we could all fit together, this time I needed to mind three tent spots due to another lady from the group coming in to join us for the last two days of the hike.
I love getting into camp and setting up the tent, then heating up some water for a hot drink before dinner. Looking back on the days hike and having a chat with the other hikers. Also I love checking out what everyone else is eating, I’ve come to realize I’m a boring eater, but I’m getting lots of ideas from the ladies I’ve been hiking with that my food is starting to improve, there is hope for me yet.
Day Four- Roaring Meg to Oberon Bay
Because this day would be a short days hike we decided that we would head down to the most Southernly point of the Australian mainland in the morning before heading off to Oberon Bay. This added around 8kms more to the days hiking. Which we ended up walking just under 20kms for the day which turned out to be longer then yesterday’s hike.
I saw two snakes along this track, both were only small snakes but the second one I nearly stepped on so it scared the bejesus out of me, he must of been checking out the birds that I were checking out on the path just in front of him, I didn’t notice him because of all the leaves and twigs on the track, until I stepped over him then he moved and I did a little dance a long the track until I felt I was safe, yep the smart thing to do would be to stand still but hindsight is a wonderful thing or in my case could of been an awful thing.
After the walk down to South Point we packed up and headed for Oberon Bay.
We stopped at Halfway Hut to fill up our bottles because there was no water at Oberon Bay, so for the last 6kms we were carrying five litres of water each, (turns out we really didn’t need to carry so much, at the end of the hike I still had over two litres of water).
The walk from Halfway Hut to Oberon was made harder by the sandy track we had to walk along, I was definitely hurting by the time we got into the camp ground and so glad to drop my pack. I soon realised I didn’t like this camp ground, it was sandy, a very long walk to the toilets, there were rats and a fox that obviously feels this is his land so he would just walk around like he owned the place 😳. I don’t think I’ll be back to this camp ground, I would rather camp at Halfway Hut and take the service track up to Telegraph Saddle to get back to my car.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate sand, I just don’t like hiking on it, or camping on it, or finding it in everything days later. Bloody sand grrr.
Day Five – Oberon Bay to Tidal River
Being the last day I thought I would be a lot slower and just enjoy the last few hours of my hike but the closer we got to Tidal River the more people we saw and I guess I don’t like crowds so I didn’t stop until I got to Tidal River.
I don’t know about you but if I saw someone coming up the track with a heavy pack I would step aside and let them pass, but nope, most people I came across just walked straight down the centre of the path and I had to step aside for them.
It was a fairly easy two hour hike into Tidal River, and I was hanging out for hot chips and a coke (Not that I usually drink coke) and a chance for the last time to remove my pack.
This would have to be one of my favourite hikes now, but I certainly will never do it in school holidays ever again. It was tough putting up with crowds of people when you are not a people person. I think next time I’ll start the hike on a Monday, and hike through to the Friday, then hopefully I may not see many other hikers.
I loved having the company of the ladies that joined me on this hike, they certainly gave me a few laughs and I’m sure I gave them a few laughs, oh and I learnt about different foods as well 😁🙄🤣 and finally I know what Quince Paste is, and I love it. So now you know what I’ll be bringing on my next hike.
I’ve got one more overnight hike before my Larapinta hike and I think I’m ready, yes I managed the five days hiking but I still found it tough and some days were hard, I know the Larapinta will test me in more ways then one but I’m ready to experience that. And I’m excited but bloody nervous as shit lol. I know I’ll have days with tears, and days with laughter, days I will want to give up and days I will push through and smile at the end of it. But isn’t that life… if you don’t put one foot in front of the other you will not experience life.