Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

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Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby puredingo » Mon 29 May, 2017 2:52 pm

I just found a Katoomba to Mittagong book (actually a series of photocopied pages from a book) that someone has obviously given me years ago and I've completely forgotten about? Anyway, in it has the suggested route of once crossing the Cox heading up and over Wonga Mt via Oak terrace and then connecting with the Kowmung which you follow upstream upon exiting via one of the Spurs that lead to Mount Field.

In all the trip reports and general conversations on the matter I've never heard this route mentioned nor took...wonder why it dropped out of favour as the preferred path?
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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby michael_p » Mon 29 May, 2017 6:10 pm

I believe the lower Kowmung is inside the forbidden zone and the only legal path is via the Mt Cookem route.
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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby Mark F » Mon 29 May, 2017 6:12 pm

That is a really interesting route with the narrow ridge along the Gangererang Range and out to Wonga Mountain. I suspect it has fallen out of favour because it is not tracked as the Scotts Main Range - White Dog route which really makes the standard walk from the Nattai to Katoomba a very long fire trail bash - boring :cry: - and once on the fire trail you really just want to get it over with as soon as possible.

It seems that over the years much of that part of the mountains has fallen off the radar - perhaps it has become a bit to overgrown.

Edit - Yep - its inside the exclusion zone but I doubt you would ever see a ranger.
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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby DaveNoble » Mon 29 May, 2017 6:55 pm

That route has never fallen out of favour. It has never been in favour. The traditional M - K route is Mt Cookem and Scotts Main. That is the way most people go. It is also the most boring route and there is no need to go that way. Good M to K routes lie via Kanangra Walls or via the Kowmung River or via the Blue Breaks. Those routes happen to be longer - but are far more rewarding in my opinion. Many of these routes involve some route finding and are off track.

The easiest route over the Low Gangerangs uses the old horse track cut by Claude Veyret. That track is still there and is regularly used by bushwalkers. It is marked on the Dunphy map (Gangerang and Wild Dog Mountains). A lot of the Low Gangerang Range is quite open and is magnificent forest - well worth visiting.

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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby puredingo » Mon 29 May, 2017 10:07 pm

Hmmm, interesting indeed. I wonder how many unsuspecting punters plan to do the M to K, grab hold of the notes I have and get to Wonga mountain and look in vain for a track, not even knowing they're in the no-go zone?
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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby Allchin09 » Tue 30 May, 2017 8:36 pm

If I were to plan an M2K trip in a hypothetical world without inner-catchment areas, I would follow the route as you have suggested up Morriberri pass and over Wonga Mt Puredingo. I would also visit Rigby Rock Lookout!
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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby rcaffin » Tue 30 May, 2017 8:58 pm

Scotts Main Range is so boring - especially in mid-summer! That white road ... we flitted from shade to shade.

But there are several routes to the Kowmung, and you can go up the Kowmung for some way before climbing one of the spurs. Most of them are quite nice. We did find prickly pear on some of them, and grubbed some of it out a few times.

Catchment area - I was under the impression that the Water Board signs near the junction of Kowmung and Cox had been removed - many years ago.

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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby kanangra » Wed 31 May, 2017 4:30 pm

Pure Dingo I have been the way your notes suggest and highly recommend it. Once on top navigation over Wonga Mt is not straight forward. There are (or were?) markers but not easy to locate. I think there was an old horse track down years ago but I couldn't find any trace of it. I went well off track and ended up on the rim of the Kowmung Gorge roughly opposite where the track down from New Yards opposite comes onto the river. There I found three markers on a limb on the ground? It is possible to descend straight down to the Kowmung from there and head up to New Yards. It is also possible to walk up river to the causeway but that section of the river is slow going. Also a quicker route than going up Moriberri to the Oak Terrace is to head up the Cox's and head up a side ridge which brings you out not far from Wonga Mt. I forget the name of the spur but someone will know it. It takes off right next to a side creek. All worthy of exploration.

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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby puredingo » Thu 08 Jun, 2017 10:30 pm

K, just looking at my map along with the trip notes and it seems once you hit Wonga Mt you must have taken a right angle and headed direct East. The notes suggest you should continue up and over the mountain then start veering in a s/w direction until you end up in Wonga Wongo brook which you then obviously follow onto the Kowmung.

As you say the whole area looks like it' deserves a good going over and the weather is getting just right.....
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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby kanangra » Tue 27 Jun, 2017 11:36 am

Yes I did make a bit of a blue there I will admit. The navigation is not all that easy through there. Fairly flat and covered in trees so hard to find many land marks. I came back later and took the route over Wonga Mt to the Kowmung. There is meant to be an old horse track down the mountain but I didn't find any trace of it. I also came along there another time on a trip from Katoomba to Dex Ck. Came straight up from the Coxs then along the Oak terrace. I remember a good view out over a creek feeding into the Kowmung. Eventually I took the pass up onto the tops. Can't quite recall the name of it now. But it was an easy climb. It didn't look as if anyone had been that way for a long time though. Camped at Dex Ck and went out via Strongleg Buttress the next day.

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Re: Katoomba to Mittagong...snubbed section?

Postby rcaffin » Fri 30 Jun, 2017 8:26 pm

There are old horse tracks - HORSE TRACKS, all over the place. Still in use in some cases...
Following them is a bit of an art, and an amusing occupation.

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