I met B at the NP gates at 08:45 (well more like 9am, since he was late. I should add he was also the one who’d camped mere kilometres away). Today we had four swims on the menu with a forecast for 30+ deg and a possible afternoon thunderstorm.
First we headed down to and along Glenbrook Gorge. The path down to the water is well defined but not so much so along the gorge.
We went for a glorious swim in a deep section and then were surprised to find a mini trampoline. Neither of us was game to try the jump though.
Next was a fun climb up to Mount Portal; timed perfectly to see the blue mountains train traverse the gorge.
Now it was actually time to start “proper running”. There was a gentle, upward slope to the fire trail that my legs weren’t too happy about – they preferred bushwalking today!
We enjoyed a good lookout break at Tunnel View Lookout sans trains before a very fun single track run around Portal Waterhole (swim #2 B?) on the waterhole trail. B then found us some off trail to run through … …
At the intersection with the road we topped up our water bottles and drank our fill (B had organised a water drop – nice) before continuing to the Oaks Trail and down a track that intersects with the Loop track to Red Hands Cave. A great single track but unfortunately I did my ankle in on this stretch. There was a super friendly duo we had a chat with at the cave before pushing on.
I was starting to feel very hot and was really looking forward to swim #2. This certainly was a delight to find. Nice, refreshing water temperature and a beaut waterfall to sit under and have the water pummel one’s shoulders. And now to try my home made Kale Toffee Bars.
Back up the steep hill and around to Kanuka Brook for swim #3. Sadly B lost his sunnies in the scrub (turns out it was a lot less runnable than I thought!). The swim in the confluence was rather refreshing and different to the first two swims of the day.
We now headed East back towards our bikes and along Glenbrook Creek. There were some baby sand dunes on the bend in the creek so I got B to do some sand hill reps to burn some of his speed :)
Soon we were at Blue Pool for swim #4 and the final of the day. We swam a bit up the creek and then returned to our belongings. B showed off his boutique towel one more time before encouraging me to run up the stairs (!) to join the road and return to the national park gates.
28km, 4 swims, 7.5 hours, totally knackered.
Smashed some ciders, pizza and kumara wedges before heading back to Sydney town. Bloody ripper of a day.