CATHERINE HILL BAY – 18 February 2023
Beth L had asked if I would put on a day walk to the sea caves, the tides have to be “just right” so I wasn’t sure I could, but on sussing out the tide charts, I determined that the weekend of the 18th February would be a good low tide, .07m at around 2.30pm. You wouldn’t credit how hard it is to get a really, really low tide on a weekend in daylight hours, it’s either full low tide at 6am or sometime after sunset. I checked the swell for the day a few days beforehand and it looked like a 1m swell. So, we’re good to go!
Once I put it on the MSS calendar, I ended up with a cast of thousands! The day wouldn’t ordinarily be blog-worthy, but some photos were taken that depict things that we haven’t seen on other trips.
A friend, Chris A, had told me of the fossilised trees on Ghosties Beach. These are remnants of a petrified forest from a volcano eruption 250m years ago, apparently 20k to the east of where these fossils are. Apparently they’ve been identified as ancient Glossopteris trees.
Sadly, later in the afternoon (after we’d all gone home), emergency services descended on this beach as apparently someone had drowned. Very sobering experience, given that we’d all had so much fun frolicing in the ocean.
We had to cross a headland at some point, and last time I did this, I struggled getting up the top, needed a rope to pull on. So, I packed 2 ropes and an etriea to use as a “ladder”, and what do you know scrambled up it without any problem! Apparently, some weeks ago too, the sand had been washed away, making it a little difficult at the start, thankfully the sand is coming back.
Heading along to our next cave, love these big rock platforms, and you know it’s low tide by the green seaweed on the rocks.
Our first stunning cave, everyone was impressed with it, but wait there’s more!
Entering a cave that we hadn’t seen before, meant a bit of a wade through the water, but do-able.
And the highlight, this cave is massive, and the sound of the waves breaking at the front of it were deafening.
Onni took a great pic of me sitting watching the waves break. There mist was caused by the breaking waves.
After we’d had our fill of Rainbow cave, we walked to another cave in the area that we’d visited before.
Garry wanted to survey the cave if possible. Where this photo was taken is right above the cave.
Onni jumping in, not everyone felt the need to jump!
This is me above the canyon, I was checking out to see if there was another entry point (which there was), and how swift the current was.
Up the back of the cave looking down to the entrance. Not everyone went in, just a few brave souls.
This is the channel exit, there was a calmer exit around the other side. It looked so inviting, but getting out this way would have shredded my legs as I didn’t have a wetsuit. By now the swell has built a little too. This is a nice part of the coast, there were a couple of swimming holes (like a spa), that we could laze in whilst Garry was surveying.
Big thanks to everyone who joined me, there’s plenty more to explore up and down the coast, have been thinking of alternative trips for the future.
There’s nothing glamorous about bushwalking, caving or canyoning, but it sure is fun! If you’re an armchair bushwalker, someone looking for new adventures, or one of my friends who just wants to see what I’ve been up to, this site is for you, sign up to get email alerts now!