The path we had chosen was Ned's Gully - Ned's Saddle - Ned's Peak, approximately a 5.5km walk return. Even though the weather forecast was gloomy, with showers predicted for Monday, we thought we'd test our luck anyway and had our fingers crossed for good weather!
Lady Luck was on our side, and it didn't rain all day!
|We started at the carpark|
|The forest was so surreal it was like a fairytale|
|Beautiful trails of all terrains|
|Including steep rocky paths|
The trails we took are graded as "medium" on the Parks Victoria guide, which is quite deceptive especially for avid hikers such as ourselves who frequently use the guide to choose routes. "Medium" for the Cathedral Range Park was clarified in the guide as "Steep sections but footing less difficult.Sturdy footwear and a good level of fitness required". We can usually tackle hard tracks, so we thought the Medium would be easy, but it really wasn't. Apparently, people rock climb in the Cathedral Range! There are some very impressive photos floating around the internet.
Armed with our ignorance, we proceeded to the top of Ned's Peak with much difficulty. It involved some minor rock climbing, but it was so rewarding once we got to the peak.
|Totally wrecked just getting up to Ned's Saddle.|
We still have the Peak to get up to
|And this is how I capture nature|
|Nearly at the peak, the path is strewn with rocks|
|My sister looking snazzy at the top of Ned's Peak|
|Finally at the peak! Beautiful rock formations|
Once we had half a Power Bar at the top, we started our descent. And what a descent it was! Anyone who's said they've had a Walk to Remember has not walked this walk before! While our ascent up to the Peak was clearly marked, our descent wasn't, and we lost the path and veered off track. (It wasn't just us, two other male hikers got lost too, but didn't seem too fazed and proceeded to trudge happily down a 40-50 degree incline in a straight line).
There is really nothing scarier than being afraid of heights, and being lost on a mountain peak, trying to descend.
After meandering around for about 25 minutes, gripping hard onto any surface I could find be it tree, rock or just plain mud, my sister finally got us to the trail! Hooray for her orienteering skills and her Iphone! (She strongly recommends the Avenza app if you're planning on going hiking, total lifesaver today. It's a database of PDF maps from Parks Victoria, but with GPS tracking).
On the bright side, I conquered my fear of heights for the day at least, and the rest of the descent on track was a piece of cake, even though I was concerned earlier in the day about the steepness.
|More arrows were definitely needed on the descent from Ned's Peak|
|This gushing creek though calmed us from our adventure at the end|
So, that was what I got up to on my Monday. If anyone's interested, you can go rock climbing, abseiling or walking at the Cathedral Range State Park. It's beautiful, and if I wasn't so petrified of heights, I'd love to go rock climbing too. It's a good challenge, for anyone with a decent level of fitness (as a guide, both my sister and I are runners, and we were both puffed out by by the time we got to the peak).
Have you been to the Cathedral Range? Are you afraid of heights like yours truly?