Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

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Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby Luc-Porter » Mon 11 Sep, 2017 3:17 pm

Hello fellow Bushwalkers.
Just finished K2K in a day, well if you can call starting walk at 6:50am and finishing at 1:20am a day.
Figured I'd give you some updates and my thoughts on the Hike.
First off, I totally underestimated how hard thiis track is. To put it in perspective, I like to think I'm reasonably fit.
Ive hiked the six foot track in a day, took me 9.5Hrs.
K2K in a day took me and my mate Ben 18.5Hrs.
So the embarresing bit.
We lost the track at Mt Berry, came down the wrong ridge zigzaging down to hopefully pick up the track, when Mt High and Mighty came into view again, it was 90 degrees to our left, a quick consult of the topo told us not only were we off course, we had descended about 300m too far. then the fun began. faced with a long slog to the top of Berry again, we decided to traverse the ridge and slightly uphill to meet the track again near Gabes Gap. this was easier said than done. it was a nasty bush bash, thick scrub and Lawyer vine. I swear, ( and I did at length ) that damn vine. Every third vine snagged my pack and stopped me dead. the other two of the three, snagged my arms, legs and boots. We also discovered three new species of plant, known now as "F@#k you plants" the first is a single leafed spikey plant. the second is a three leafed spikey plant, the third is a particulary nasty *&%$#! of spikes topped with needle like spikes. 1.5 hrs later, we were at Gabes Gap.
We made it to Cloudmaker around 12:30, signed the log book and noted K2K in a day, running late.
Spirits were still high, we were off to Dex Creek. I expected to waste some time here trying to pick up the track, I had not expected to get lost at Mt Berry. Every time the track dissapeared, we entered a clearing or over a rocky section, My heart sank a little. ( please no, not again, please let us pick the track again )
Dex creek has no running water. There are a few stagnant puddles if you were desperate.
a little bush bashing again and we picked up the track west of Carra Top.
Then down Strongleg ridge to the river. What a ruthless hill, my feet ached with every step down, my toes felt like they had been put through a mincer. we descended for ages and still the valley floor seemed no closer. Its a hard merciless hill.
we hit the bottom around 4pm, well behind time. Kanangra creek is not running, a few pools of water, I filled up here, the water was crystal clear, treated the water and followed the creek to Coxs river, its running but quite low.
my feet were burning by this stage. It was crossing the river where I made my second Rookie mistake.
I took my boots and socks off and rolled up my pants, boots in one hand, backpack in the other ( yeah, I know, Dumb. Still can work out why i didn't put pack back on)
my only warm jersey tied around my waist, I crossed the river. Its uber slippery. *&%$#!, *&%$#!, *&%$#! I said as I slipped and went over backwards. Inslow motion, I feel I landed on my butt, sitting in the water.
Soaking wet, hours behind time, we headed up Mt Yellow Dog. ( a little tip I picked up, wet clothes will dry faster if you wear them )
Mt Yellow Dog is a Behemoth of a hill. I'd rather not go into detail, it hurt, the sun was setting, we still had about 20kms to go.
It was well dark when we made it to the top. Around 7pm.
Head torches on, we made it to Mobs Swamp, Again, no water here.
from there to Medlow Gap ( it took ages ) along this section, we came across a wombat, cant tell you how much running into that one rotund hairy mammal lifted our spirits. Thanks Wombat.
Medlow gap to tarros Ladder, 2km took an hour, granted the hike up is unpleasant with fresh legs, in the dark, after walking for around 15hrs, I'll just say it was really unpleasant. Base of ladders was reached about 10pm.
Narrow Neck, the longest 10km I've ever hiked. It just went on and on ( a bit like this post )
every step hurt, every downhill section was agony, my knee was screaming at me, my blistered feet protested all the way.
It took over 3hrs to walk that damn fire trail.
If you know the area, we called my beautiful girlfriend Erica, around where you would leave the main trail to take Redledge Pass.
The relentlessness of Narrow neck, the fact we had been walking 18hrs, we were both buggered. I'd had enough.
At 1:20am, we climbed the stile at the locked gate. Erica, as fantastic as she is, met us with water, hot food and hot tea.
I kid you not, It was the greatest cup of tea Ive ever had in my life. Ben wolfed down all the food. I couldn't eat because id been dry retching for the past 2hrs.
In short.
If you have never done this walk, do not underestimate how tough it is.
Take all relevant maps and a compass and know how to use both.
You will lose the track numerous times,its vague in a lot of places, its non existant in others.
Only water at Dex creek was brown and nasty looking puddle water.
water in pools at Kanangra creek and running at Coxs river.
No water at all at Mobs Swamp.
Happy Hiking.
Luc-Porter
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby Mark F » Mon 11 Sep, 2017 5:19 pm

Great write up Luc. Reading other peoples accounts of sufferfest trips is a guilty pleasure of mine :twisted:

As time moves on it will become a badge of honour.
"Perfection is attained not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing more to remove".
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby puredingo » Mon 11 Sep, 2017 6:49 pm

Haha nice work. I know and feel your pain mate.
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby ribuck » Mon 11 Sep, 2017 7:46 pm

It's bad luck that you lost some time early in the trip, but your epic walk is sure to yield years of fond memories in the future.

I've done the walk several times, but taking two days, and the hour from the locked gate to the railway station is always the hardest. My wife doesn't drive on dirt roads, so she's not going to be waiting at the locked gate (she would prefer to join me on the walk). Everyone should have a girlfriend like Erica!
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby Chunder fuzz » Mon 11 Sep, 2017 7:55 pm

Thanks for that, nice little sufferfest. Have been considering this as a walk to do some time next year.
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby Luc-Porter » Mon 11 Sep, 2017 8:17 pm

Yeah it's a fantastic walk. I'd love to do it over two days and really take in the surroundings properly.
I did it in a day or tried to, to get a gauge on my fitness.
I was planning to take on the Three Peaks Challenge this coming long weekend.
Given the time taken and how I felt at the end, I'm thinking probably not going to make the 48hr cut off time.
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby rachel_g » Tue 12 Sep, 2017 12:02 pm

My bushwalking club does this trip most years - I did it for the first time last weekend. I wrote about my experience here: http://grindlay.org/2017/09/k2k-in-a-day/ Quite a different story from the original poster!
It certainly makes a big difference when you know the route. We hit Kanangra Creek fairly high up and water was flowing quite nicely there.
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby rcaffin » Wed 13 Sep, 2017 8:07 pm

Interesting, and a great effort. Some questions:

Tarros Ladder? Very slow when there a few people in the party. Why not go up Dunphys Pass - its a walk.

Spur down to Coxs River - we normally go up and down the spur which ends at the junction of Kanagra and Coxs. Is going off the side faster?

Cheers
Roger
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby tom_brennan » Thu 14 Sep, 2017 12:20 pm

rcaffin wrote:Tarros Ladder? Very slow when there a few people in the party. Why not go up Dunphys Pass - its a walk.


I've only done Tarros a few times but it was pretty quick. It's only an 8m climb or so.

I assume you mean Duncan's rather than Dunphy's? Dunphys Pass would add a bit of time!
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby ribuck » Thu 14 Sep, 2017 5:47 pm

With Duncan's Pass right there, I do wonder why anyone felt the need to put in spiked route. On the other hand, I do enjoy Tarros Ladder and usually use that route.
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby Luc-Porter » Thu 14 Sep, 2017 7:29 pm

rcaffin wrote:Interesting, and a great effort. Some questions:

Tarros Ladder? Very slow when there a few people in the party. Why not go up Dunphys Pass - its a walk.

Spur down to Coxs River - we normally go up and down the spur which ends at the junction of Kanagra and Coxs. Is going off the side faster?

Cheers
Roger

Tarros Ladder. As there were only two of us, it didn't take long and is no more challenging at night as it is during the day.
Spur to Coxs. I was aware of a short cut via Tom Brennan's track notes. However, I needed water and due to suffering a bit of knee pain ( as was my mate ) we took the path of least resistance, as it was, we hit the bottom about 50m upstream of Kanangaroo clearing.
I plan in the next couple of weeks to do trip in reverse, solo. Over two days. Ill be looking at a few ways to get up strongleg. Ill also be spending a bit of time around Cloudmaker, Rumble and Roar Knoll and Mt Marooba Karoo.
The call of the Three Peaks Challenge is strong. Figure knowing a few options and approximate times cant hurt. Fitness not withstanding :lol:
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby BenS » Wed 15 Nov, 2017 1:44 pm

Excellent work. I love the country out there, amazing topography. Sounds like you are going through a similar obsession with 3 peaks that i experienced last year. A couple of other scoping routes i would recommend are
1. Mini 3 peaks. Start at kanangra walls climb cloudmaker paralyser and guouogang and then from there head west back to kanangra walls rd to a dropped car. Makes for a great day and you learn that part of the route really well
2. From dunphys campground you can do a ~40km loop down to the cox via ironmonger ridge, up mt guouogang via krungle bungle range (there is a plane wreck along the way which is well worth checking out). Then from mt G down to the cox via guouogang ridge then up direct to mt yellow dog. From there follow the trail through mobbs and turn off at black horse ridge down to breakfast ck then carlons ck back to the car.

Two great routes for 3 peaks training
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby rcaffin » Wed 15 Nov, 2017 8:23 pm

Er ... yes, Duncan's Pass. Sorry about that!
Cheers
Roger
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Re: Kanangra to Katoomba. K2K in a day. (sorta)

Postby Luc-Porter » Mon 20 Nov, 2017 7:00 pm

Thanks Ben.
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