A scramble over rocks to reach a narrow and exposed beach on West Head.
Looking for short walk to do with one of the kids not too far from home after Christmas lunch, I found a beach that hopefully could be accessed via the West Head Amy Track. I had walked down to the old World War II gun embankments at West Head earlier in the year, but hadn’t seen any obvious track along the coast. So it’s a bit of an exploratory trip on a somewhat bleak afternoon!
Once we reach the first gun casing (the one on the left, or northern-most side), we start following the the rocks along the shoreline. My daughter (11yrs) is with me, and my sister who’s visiting from overseas. There’s some scrambling involved, but nothing too challenging.
After a few hundred metres along the rocks, we clamber up a bit higher, where we find an old steel and concrete structure which may also date back to World War II.
It’s harder going further up the slope, which is quite steep, so we soon drop back down to the rocks along the shoreline. There’s a “mini tessellated pavement” as we near the headland before the beach, and some flat areas of sandstone where make good progress.
Progress along the coast stops as we reach the small headland in front of the beach: there’s some large boulders that make it impossible to continue. There’s a nice rock platform with some rock pools with views towards Lion Island. But although we’re almost at Flannel Flower Beach, we still can’t see it.
I complete the last, short leg on my own. It’s an easy “climb” up and around the headland, avoiding the rocks along the shore, and then I’m at the end of the beach. While it’s not the best beach around, the challenge getting to it means you’ll probably have it to yourself… at least at low tide!
Flannel Flower Beach is a narrow sliver of sand backed by a 5m sandstone bluff. So I’m not sure there would be much of a beach at high tide – and getting to the beach would be much harder and possibly dangerous on a rising tide or at high tide.
It’s been a fun hour and a half, with some rock scrambling / parkour – and the climb back up to West Head car park helping to offset a few of the calories consumed at out Christmas lunch…
|Location||Park at the end of West Head Road (at the lookout)|
|Distance||Approx 2km in total. Flannel Flower Beach is about 500m from the end of the Army Track.|
|Grade||Moderate. Total 105 ascent; rock scrambling|
|Season/s||All year at low tide.|
|Maps||Ku-ring-gai & Berowra Valley Visitor Guide (from Info Centre)
Or the free map from entry station
|GPS Route||Routie GPS trail. View route and export to KML format.|