|1 March 2006
|Maps: Corin Dam 8626-1N Second Edition 1:25000; Tidbinbilla 8627-2S Second Edition 1:25000
A dusty drive via Piccadilly Circus to the car park at Mt Ginini. Excellent to see a lyre bird dashing across Mt Franklin Road.
Max S planned and led this walk (I think I owe him a few). I was last there in 1969, when Neil Y pillioned me to Mt Franklin on the back of his BMW motorbike and we wandered down the cleared ski slopes to hit the creek, then downstream to the falls. Max reckons twice in 30+ years is not too frequent to visit the same place.
We hit the bush from the car park at 7.55am, again sauntering down across the soft mountain grass through the trees. We skirted the W side of the main Ginini Flats area and continued just about due N to the spur I'd wandered down the previous Wednesday.
At 9am Max called a stop so he could have breakfast, then we continued on till 10.15am for another 10 minute stop. Our route paralleled Ginini Creek, now swinging to the NE as it continued its headlong plunge of 550m to the top of the falls. We were high above the creek, as if 'twixt heaven and hell' as we breast-stroked through the 2-3m high, dense regrowth. It certainly would have been 'hell' in the creek line and the heaven of the spur top didn't look any less dense. We spent a lot of time climbing trees - annoying when they lay perpendicular to our line of travel and so had to be clambered over, but helpful when they had fallen in our intended direction and we could scoot along the trunks for several metres with vision over the top of the gum and wattle regrowth. I must say Max chose the correct order of outward and home legs - I'd hate to have had to battle uphill through this stuff!
11.25am saw us at the top of Ginini Falls, having taken 3 and a half hours to cover the 5.3km and 550m drop. Unfortunately we didn't have the time to attempt to climb down the 150m to the bottom (let alone the up!). The rushing creek plunging over the first few metres of cascade is lovely and we sat by its side in the shade for 30 minutes enjoying an early lunch. Unfortunately there is no close vantage point to show off the main drop, so clearly seen in the distance looking W from the Tidbinbilla sky-line to the E. But the view across to the sky-line from Mt Domain N to Mt Tidbinbilla is awesome. See it via the thumbnail on the right. I enjoyed turkey and plum sauce sandwiches as Max related stories he'd heard of old hands long ago walking across the valley set out before us, from Fishing Gap to Mt Franklin to ski. We replenished our water from the aerated pools, tasting better than the chlorinated product eventually available to all Canberrans.
At 12.10pm we left the idyllic spot, heading S and up through thick scrub and regrowth. Our hearts fell, imagining that the return leg would be more of the same. In addition, it was too far to head in a long U to a feature to the ESE of the falls where a possible view of the long drop could be enjoyed.
But both the scrub and the climb decreased to quite manageable levels and in 1 hour 20 minutes we'd ascended the 2.2km and 440m to a spur where it was suspected that we'd have a view of our outward route. A little circle didn't find the vantage point, so we pressed on home.
We scribed a elegant arc part way around the 1670m feature across Ginini Flats from Mt Ginini, realised we'd gone a little too far, and headed SW across the flat and up the old ski run to the car, reaching it at 2.40pm.
A good little walk, completed in the correct direction, with a good mate.
Distance: 10.3km Climb: 600m. Time: 7.55am - 2.40pm (6.75 hours), with 1hr 15mins of stops.
|1 Dense regrowth up from Ginini Creek
|2 Tidbinbilla skyline from Ginini Falls
|3 Top cascade of Ginini Falls