Having spotted on the topographical map a fire trail off General San Martin Drive, I’m going to check it out. If there is a walking track here, it would be the only one on the Cottage Point peninsula – a stark contrast to West Head, which has over 20 trails. After finding a very small parking area where my map shows the trail should start, I flail around in the thick scrub around where the gate ought to be. As I’m about to give up, I stumble upon a reasonable trail that has been re-routed slightly from it’s original path. As I continue, there’s some very over-grown sections and some fallen trees, but the now overgrown trail is mostly obvious.
As a reminder of what the trail once was, there’s the occasional remnants of concrete drainages pipe that would have run under the firetrail.
As I near the end of the trail – at least where my map shows the trail ending – the track becomes very distinct as it enters a section of casuarina forest. Even more exciting is the sudden asbsence of the thick and scrubby undergrowth.
But… it doesn’t last… within a few minutes the undergrowth is thicker than ever, and the track pretty much disappears. As I’m now a few hundred metres from the end of the trail, I push on through the sometimes head-high scrub, finally reaching a long sandstone platform. Perhaps, a long time ago, there was a view over the valley. Now there’s just a sea of eucalyptus trees.
I head back before it gets dark, discovering that the very start of the trail (which is fairly distinct) actually starts directly behind a row of sandstone boulders that marks the edge of the parking area.
Definitely not a walk I’d recommend – unless you like getting scratched by thick scrub or you really want to find a walk that no-else is doing!
There is a bright spot though; towards the end of my bushwalk I spot a huge rocky area on the opposite side of the valley. Although it’s getting dark, I’ve got just enough time to find another very rough track that starts a bit further up General San Martin Drive. I’m soon on a massive sandstone platform, overlooking the valley.
It’s a nice spot to catch the last of the colour in the sky.
I’m thinking it’s a likely canvas for some Aboriginal rock engravings; although the light it not great, I spot at least one engraving of a figure.