Wollemi National Park
11-12 February 2023
By SIMON WILKES
Third time lucky—having been defeated by COVID lockdowns and then floodwaters, it was great to finally make it to the wonderful Ganguddy-Dunns Swamp.
A total of twenty Club members headed out for a weekend of camping in the solitude of Wollemi National Park. Temperatures were mid-30s all weekend, and there was much swimming in amongst the paddling. The stars overnight were stunning—great constellations and satellites cruising the night sky.
Each day started with an irresistible paddle out into the fog—well worth it. Sunday morning also saw a great hike up to the pagodas, giving some cracking views back over the landscape.
Lots of cheeky possums came out in the evenings—sitting on the tables, being bold enough to wrestle you for your dinner.
It was fantastic as always to catch up with John and Cindy from Southern Cross kayaking. Across the summer period, they’re out there most weekends running the business, renting out kayaks, leading tours. Absolutely be sure to say hi if you’re in the area.
Awesome crew, fun times—to be done again.
Where is Ganguddy-Dunns Swamp?
Ganguddy-Dunns Swamp is on the Cudgegong River in Wollemi National Park. It’s approximately 3 hours 30 mins to 4 hours driving time from Sydney. First head west on the A32 Great Western Highway over the Blue Mountains to Lithgow, then head north on the B55 Castlereagh Highway towards Mudgee. Finally, take the Bylong Valley Way to Kandos and Rylstone, then the Narrango Road east to the campsite, passing through Olinda.
- Make sure to pack plenty of drinking water before heading there. You’ll need to be self sufficient.
- There is very limited mobile phone coverage there—and that’s a good thing!
- The best mist coming off the water seems to be around half hour before sunrise.
- There are a couple of great hikes in the area. The Pagoda Lookout Walking Track is 2.5 kilometres return from the campsite, and affords incredible views over ancient pagoda rock formations and the Cudgegong River. You can also follow this walk further along the river all the way to the Dam Wall and Long Cave, a 4.5km round trip.
It’s been great to see an increase in the amount of media content being shared after our outings—no longer just still photography, but increasingly video content shared on our Facebook site as well as all kinds of activity-recording media such as Relive and Strava. A great way to bring trip reports to life! Share all your best content after an outing and we’ll endeavour to share the best here at SPLASH Magazine.