On foot in Sydney: Spit to Manly

Approaching Manly on the Spit to Manly walk in Sydney, Australia

This is an absolutely terrific walk in Sydney that starts at the Spit Bridge and wends its way along the foreshore of Sydney harbour to Manly. There are tremendous views of the harbour, secluded beaches and attractive bushland tracks. Thoroughly recommended, and at 9.5 km an easy/moderate walk. There are plenty of spots to rest along the way, and Manly itself is worth exploring and provides lots of options for refreshments. A trip on the ferry from Manly to Circular Quay is also very worthwhile.

The walk commences at the Spit (as in ‘sandspit’) Bridge in north Sydney. Access to here if you are a visitor to the city is probably easiest by bus or taxi. The walk starts at the eastern side of the bridge in a clearing and then basically follows the foreshore for the next 3-4 hours. The path is generally well marked – it’s also pretty hard to get lost, if it looks like you’ve lost the track, just retrace your steps until you locate it again.

The official site for the walk is here.

Walk date: June 13, 2009
Time/level: Around 3-4 hours, easy/moderate, approx. 9.5km
Map: not required
My rating: A+

After completing the walk and a couple of beers at the Bavarian beer cafe I took the ferry to Circular Quay. It was early evening and the  light was superb allowing for some nice photos of a couple of Sydney icons.

Fellwalking: High Street

View of High Street from near Kidsty Pike

“High Street is in stature the most massive of the fells on the far east of Lakeland, in altitude exceeding all others in that company … yet despite these credentials, High Street is unassuming and unpretentious and so accommodating to travellers that the Roman surveyors and engineers, during their early invasions of this country, laid a road across its broad top for the movement of troops and supplies in preference to their usual practice of seeking routes through the mountain passes. This ancient highway, still to be seen, gave High Street its unusual name.”

Wainwright’s Favourite Lakeland Mountains

Another great day out in Lakeland, this time at its far eastern edge. We started at Mardale, leaving our car in the small carpark there. From the carpark a path curves around north-east to join the Rigg. From here it is almost due west straight up the ridge, over Rough Crag to eventually attain the summit ridge along which the Roman’s built their road. There are splendid views in all directions in good weather and a cairn marks the summit at 2718 ft.

The path soon leaves the old Roman Road to turn south-east to Mardale Ill Bell. Not long after it crosses a bridleway which could be  used to return to Mardale Head, but we continued on past Harter Fell to eventually join Gatesgarth Pass and then a moderate descent back to the start of the walk. The Haweswater Hotel, on the road out, provided a good spot to relax and have a beer.

My rating: A
Map: OL5 – The English Lakes: North Eastern Area (1:25,000)
Wainwright’s guides: The Far Eastern Fells (50th Anniversary Edition):Book Two (A Pictorial Guides to the Lakeland Fells)