Friday, 31 October 2014

Mount Amos (Mountain of Fire)

We woke up to a beautiful day, the rain had lashed in the night and now given way to clear blue skies and a light breeze. A perfect day for climbing this mountain.

Mount Amos from Honeymoon Bay
After a hearty breakfast, we headed out and we were up at the car park by 9am, well ahead of the tourist rabble.

The first kilometre of the track headed directly inland along a well paved gravel path. This first section of the walk was really easy going with only a slight uphill incline. After that the track opened up to steeper rocky hiking as we began to emerge from above the main tree line.

From there the track became much rockier and less dependent on a well-defined ‘route’. Above us were huge sections of large granite rock face, like folds and ripples of shiny, smooth fabric and we could quite understand how slippy that would be in the wet. To be fair we had to choose our steps carefully as it was slippy enough as it was. 

Because of the steepness, walking was now impossible and we had to stoop and scale the rock, which was quite tricky to master at first. We soon found our feet though and we both declared on more than one occasion how much we were enjoying the challenge, it was unlike any kind of hike we had ever done before.

As you scramble your way up Mount Amos you’re constantly bombarded with glimpses of its beauty. We found ourselves making making many excuses to stop, turn around and soak in the stunning view around us. Although we never saw another person (result!), we were definitely not alone, we shared our walk with frogs, lizards, birds and wallabies.

We also noted how still and how quiet it was and then just at that very moment, the peace was noisily disturbed by the piercing squawk of a yellow tailed, black cockatoo. He was an absolute beauty and posed very proudly for his photo! We were both thrilled.

These granite rock faces were much trickier than they looked

Its not glamorous but the crab style scramble worked!
There were definitely a few moments that "got my ticker going" so to speak. I was climbing up a steep, narrow and very craggy section. My fingers were stuck fast to the rock above my head, my left leg was bent with my foot wedged in a crevice but my right leg was dangling with nowhere apparent to go. I just couldn't find a foot hold and I felt a little panicky. I was giving myself a good talking to because panic wouldn't help me whilst Hubster calmly and gently uttered words of encouragement. Boy, he is so good in these situations. In the end, I said "come on Debbie you don't do all that gym work for nothing!", so I pressed my fingers so hard into the granite it hurt and I used all the upper body strength I could muster to heave myself out of this section. I immediately rose to steadier and firmer ground and swore loudly with relief.

After that the last segment of the walk evened out into a much less demanding climb and the trees and shrubs appeared again. 

Once at the top all the hard work, sweat and swearwords were soon forgotten as we were rewarded with the most incredible panoramic view of all of Freycinet, It was simply breathtaking and the view of Wineglass Bay was unmatched by any other location in the park. It was so perfect that it didn't even look real.

Then as we stood gazing in awe, a wedge tailed sea eagle soared on the thermals just a few metres away from us, wow what a beautiful office he has!

And so it was, just me, my man and our mountain. 

It was a perfect day.

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