Another splendid 3 days in the Wild Dog Mountains to attend the Dawn Service at Splendour Rock. This time we did it a little different and went Carlons Farm > Black Horse Ridge > Mobbs Swamp > Mount Dingo > Splendour Rock > Wombat Parade (on the east side of Mt Warrigal) > Medlow Gap > Carlons Farm.
Rusty, Ryan, Steph, Sarah and I headed to Dr Darks Cave for a shortish walk. We decided on this one as it had a bit of history around it and due to the 50km/h+ winds.
It is believed that in 1937 Dr. Dark’s discovered this cave which is located in the Fortress Ridge area of the Mt. Hay. It was used as a family home for a couple of weeks at a time. The main room comes complete with a shower (waterfall) and his rusty metal cooking items still remain in place (see photos below). Near the fire ring there is a square rusty metal box which contains a visitors book.
A short walk past the waterfall leads to you some fantastic views!
We set off bright and early from the locked gate on Glossop Road, Linden (06:00). We set up the bikes and double checked our gear and headed off along Linden Ridge firetrail. After 7km we reached the overgrown junction, we then rode a further 3km before deciding the train was too overgrown to continue (07:15). This was where the fun began, the track became quite overgrown, and we had to rely on taking bearings and our phones (for grid reference). We continued along the ridge to GR 718 755 before turning NNW towards the creek. We followed the somewhat dry unnamed creek down to Dawes Creek. Heading in a northerly direction we followed Dawes Creek until we met the junction of Wentworth Creek and the bottom of Callendina Loop.
After a short stop for lunch we headed the eastern side of the Callendina Loop in search of the cache ‘In the loop‘. This was tough going, with very thick scrub, and very steep incline. We eventually made our way up to the top of the ridge and quickly found the cache (12:00). Time was running out, we knew it would be a long trip back so we didn’t spend long at the cache location before our return trip. We had difficulty coming back down the eastern side, encountering 10 meter rock faces we couldn’t make our way down, my advice is to attack the ridge closer to the southern point. Once we reached Dawes Creek the weather turned sour, it wasn’t raining heavily but it made life quite difficult heading back up the now slippery creek back to Linden Ridge.
As always, the sun came back out when we reached Linden Ridge, we returned to the bikes just as it was getting dark (18:00). This made the ride back home quite interesting as we only had lights suitable for walking. Luckily it was a full moon so visibility was quite high. After a bit under two hours we arrived back at our cars (19:45), exhausted but pleased that we had made the trip.
It was quite the adventure, definitely recommended to anyone that likes to push themselves a bit further than they should.
A bit of advice for anyone wishing to complete this:
Take your time, wouldn’t hurt to do this as an overnight hike
Wear a long sleeve shirt and long pants/gaiters
Take appropriate equipment, maps, gps, PLB
Plan your route ahead, notify police of your trip intention