January is a time to stay at home for us this year, but it’s still holiday time in Beecroft. If you jump over our back fence you could scramble along the dry creek bed to meet up with the part of the bush at the bottom of Day Road in Cheltenham (edge of Malton Road). Once at the bottom of Day Road, you can walk down the bush track that connects to the Great North Walk which is a 250 km walking track that runs between Sydney to Newcastle. Phew!
The Great North Walk was developed from Gary McDougall’s and Leigh Shearer Heriot’s proposal for a ‘Sydney to Hunter Track’, consisting of about 300km of walking tracks, submitted to the Australian Bicentennial Authority in 1988. I have been told that it incorporates a few convict tracks along part of its route, but I have only ever walked parts closest to home. It is estimated that more than 40,000 local, interstate and international visitors use the walk annually, either taking the challenge of the full 12-16 day hike or enjoying shorter walks of one or two days in different sections of the walk.
The bush is very solitary – yet you also meet lots of people walking or on bikes along the way.
Here are some mobile phone shots of the walk near home.