Gloomy morning early on. That’s it, I’m heading back out.
The heavy rain forecast never eventuated, and it was a warm day trudging out. Seldom any direct sunshine, but a nice day for walking.
Just as well, there was plenty of trudging on offer.
I packed up early enough, but sat reading the last book I started yesterday, so was right on 9 am for departure.
Can’t say I really mind backtracking. You get different views and a new appreciation for the landscape.
I went back to the old Willows Hut for a second look at the graffiti that goes back to the early 1930s.
Then it was the big climb for the day, following a few smaller ones after leaving Palmer Hut, but then the road drops 100 m, and you need to climb that again before the steep descent to Seymour Stream. It had been hard work getting up that incline two days before, and I realised why. The track was super steep, and not much fun even going down for my knees.
During my descent I noted two four-wheel-drives climbing up the hill on the other side of the valley. That was a relief. It would have been upsetting to have missed out on a ride if they had been heading in a direction advantageous to me, by having mooched around for 20 minutes while I had addressed a group of cows, or just flopped on the side of the track.
From the bottom it was just 6 km to the hut, that’s car distance not the longer walking distance. A few impediments to progress. A grader had been through loosening up the surface; the stream was up around 100 mm from my previous crossings, so each really needed a mad dash; and the valley floor had quite a slope to wander up.
I met another incoming four-wheel-drive, and we had a chat. The driver mentioned two old blokes in the hut, hunters, and then backtracked on their description when my hat came off.
Wasn’t long before the aged gentlemen appeared on a large quad bike, a side-by-side. We had a laugh when we found out I was smack in the middle of their ages.
But I admit I was feeling my age after this big day of energy expenditure.
The positive was that I was no longer on rations for dinner, after having previously divvied up the last of my food to gain an extra, now unneeded day’s food.
Should sleep well.