Dramatis persona*

helenhead Helen Chick

I've always wanted a bumper sticker that said "I'm a female, LDS/Mormon, Scout leading, geocaching, piano-playing, bicycling, mathematics educator with a PhD in maths ... and I VOTE"!

I think this makes me a minority group of cardinality 1!

* Since there's only one of me and "personae" is plural (I think), I've gone with dramatis persona.
June 2018
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Bathurst Harbour Day 2

Clayton’s Corner, Mount Beattie, and a westward wander

The weather today was largely true to its forecast, with wind and frequent showers giving us a further taste of typical conditions for the area. Moving the kayaks back down onto the beach ready for launching revealed early occurrences of our group’s surprising teamwork and equally surprising inability to count, in that the 8 lifters per boat usually managed to lift simultaneously but rarely on the actual count of three. We did our warm up routine, which proved very effective over the course of the week, as I think nearly all of us survived with very few aches and pains.

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We paddled just over 1km across the bay to Clayton’s Corner, where you can visit what used to be the home of Win and Clyde Clayton, some of the very few permanent residents that the area had. From here, following a quick change into walking attire, we made our way up nearby Mount Beattie.

(Photo above by Roaring 40°s Kayaking)

It’s about 2km to the summit, and in between blustery squalls the views were impressive. To our east there was Bathurst Harbour (three times bigger than Sydney Harbour), visible opening up to the left in the first photo below, and to our SE we could see Melaleuca and the inlet, visible behind me in the second photo (the fluoro thingy beside my head is a floatable lanyard for my glasses).

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(Photo above by Roaring 40°s Kayaking)

To our north, on the other side of Bathurst Narrows, we could see the iconic Mount Rugby, its prominent peak a readily identified landmark in the area when the mist — or a rugged-up kayaking tour group — wasn’t obscuring it.

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To the west we could see beyond Bathurst Narrows, to the narrow meeting of the two peninsulas where the Port Davey walking track crosses, and out past the Bathurst Channel and into Port Davey itself.

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We could see the Breaksea Islands, which sort of provide a buffer to the southern ocean as it hits the area. Even at this distance of some 10km we could see the effect of the swell breaking on the coast (with the help of a zoom lens), and, if it hadn’t been so noisily windy where we were standing, apparently the roar of this far-off swell is audible.

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We returned to Clayton’s Corner where another group of kayakers on their own tour were sheltering in the house and so had a nice warm fire already going, meaning that we could have a cosy lunch. Our southward crossing of Forest Lagoon was very windy at the start, and getting us all launched without running into rocks and moored yachts before heading out into the open was a bit of a challenge but successfully negotiated.  bIMG_6440

We hugged the shelter of the western lee shore on our way back. bIMG_6446

In the later afternoon some of our group rested, but a few of us decided to head westwards on foot, to see if we could reach the Port Davey track as it makes its run to Melaleuca. We had a bit of track at first but then it was a matter of going cross country through boggy bits and low tea-tree, until we hit the Port Davey track and took a group photo.

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And the rainbow may not have influenced the achievement, but I was quite pleased with myself for being able to navigate across the seemingly featureless desolate plain to pick up the end of the homeward track that would take us back to the Forest Lagoon camp for our second night’s yummy dinner.

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