Sunday, November 11, 2018

Mt Marsden, NSW, Australia


2018 November: Mt Marsden, Kandos State Forest, NSW, Australia
                            Day-trip


Prolog - Mt Marsden

Near the town of Kandos, NSW, if you drive south along Glen Alice Road, this is what you'll see:
- Red arrow: Mt Marsden summit
- Yellow arrows: The way to climb Mt Marsden.
- Yellow line: Glen Alice Road
- Yellow dot: For the climb to Mt Marsden, car can be parked here by the side of Glen Alice Road.


Mount Marsden, about 1030 meters, is an imposing hill overlooking Capertee valley.

The summit, lying at the southern end of a ridge running north-south, is mostly surrounded by unscalable high cliffs. But one can climb it from about 2km north of the summit ... From the side of Glen Alice Road, climb straight up to the ridge; then walk along the top to the summit.

The summit itself is quite flat with no view. But the nearby cliff edges have marvellous views down to the farmland below.

More interesting are the pagodas to the east of the summit, photos #32 to #47. If you intend to climb Mt Marsden, make an effort to climb these pagodas too.


This trip

Just 2 of us, YM and I.

Most others regard the driving time as too long ... about 3 hours drive from Sydney. Add in toilet stop and coffee stop, it can be 3.5 hours.


Weather

Weather forecast is for a cloudy day. I almost can't be bothered to go ... don't like cloudy days when climbing up mountains.

But it turns out to be quite sunny. Any clouds around are thin high white clouds which one would not be bothered to consider as clouds. It is one of those occasions the weather forecast is pleasantly wrong.


Maps

- 1:25,000 scaled Bogee 8932-3S
- 1:100,000 scaled Mount Pomany 8932

Below is the relevant part of the 1:25,000 scaled map.
- Red line running vertically along left edge: Glen Alice Road


GPS tracklog file & Route

The GPX tracklog file of our walk can be downloaded from:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1vxj2gsQ_FT0YolNZaCLgltayFTq1SbcT

Below is our tracklog in red superimposed on the 1:25,000 map.
- Thicker red line running vertically along left edge: Glen Alice Road
- 7 brown arrows, anti-clockwise from the top:
       1  Where my car is parked, GR 232 543, by the side of Glen Alice Road
       2  Lookout 1, GR 237 540
       3  Lookout 2, GR 239 535
       4  Lookout 7, boundary of GR 240 525 / 240 526, no photograph in this trip report
       5  Lookout 4, GR 240 523
       6  Lookout 5, GR 242 525, almost at GR 243 525
       7  Harder-to-climb pagoda, GR 245 525
- 4 blue arrows, from left to right:
       1  Lookout 3, boundary of GR 240 523 / 241 523
       2  Mt Marsden summit, about 1030 meters
       3  Lookout 6, GR 243 524
       4  Easy-to-climb pagoda, GR 245 524


Satellite image of the above map


Summary of our route:
-  Park car at GR 232 543, by the side of Glen Alice Road (near Kandos)
-  Climb straight up a steep slope to the top of a ridge
-  Walk along the ridge to Mt Marsden summit
-  Visit rocky outcrops south and west of the summit
-  Then to 2 pagodas east of the summit; and climb them
-  Retrace steps back to the car.


Timeline & Distance

Park my car at GR 232 543, by the side of Glen Alice Road (near Kandos)

09:23   0.0  km  Start walking
10:07   0.95km  At lookout 1

10:10   0.95km  Resume walking
10:18   1.25km  At top of a rock ... red arrow in photo #11

10:20   1.25km  Resume walking
10:27   1.6  km  At lookout 2

10:30   1.6  km  Resume walking
10:56   2.6  km  At lookout 7 ... no photograph in this trip report
11:04   2.85km  At lookout 3, south of Mt Marsden summit

11:06   2.85km  Leave lookout 3
11:09   2.95km  At lookout 4, west of Mt Marsden summit

Lunch

11:49   3.1  km  Leave lookout 4
11:53   3.25km  At Mt Marsden summit, approx 1030 meters
12:06   3.5  km  At lookout 5, a small rocky platform

12:07   3.5  km  Resume walking
12:17   3.8  km  At top of easy-to-climb pagoda

12:20   3.85km  Leave easy-to-climb pagoda
12:25   3.9  km  At base of harder-to-climb pagoda

Wait till YM climbs up a ledge of the pagoda

12:34   3.95km  My turn to climb up the pagoda
12:36   4.0  km  At top of harder-to-climb pagoda

12:41   4.05km  Start to climb down the pagoda

Wait till YM climbs down from a ledge to the ground

12:50   4.1  km  At base of harder-to-climb pagoda

12:52   4.1  km  Start of the return leg
13:01   4.4  km  At lookout 6

13:03   4.4  km  Resume walking
13:09   4.5  km  Near lookout 5, the small rocky platform we visited at 12:06
13:16   4.7  km  Back at Mt Marsden summit
13:26   5.0  km  At lookout 7 ... no photograph in this trip report

13:27   5.0  km  Leave lookout 7
13:53   6.3  km  At the rocks as at 10:18

13:54   6.3  km  Resume walking
14:23   7.4  km  Back at my car at Glen Alice Road

==============================================

Total:  5 hrs 00 min
           7.4 km  Distance is from Google Earth


Pictures - Glen Alice Road

1)  Park my car on the east side of Glen Alice Road, Grid Ref 232 543, about 2 km north of Mt Marsden summit.
This is where we start to walk ... up the embankment, left side of the pic ... Refer to photo #2.


2)  Standing at where I took the previous pic, and looking up the embankment on the east side of Glen Alice Road ~~~
- Yellow arrow: We go straight up  :-)


To the ridge of Mt Marsden

3)  Once we are up the embankment of the previous pic, we cross a run-down fence.
- Left side of fence: Kandos State Forest where Mt Marsden is located
- Right side of fence: East side of Glen Alice Road
Why is there a fence for a State Forest ?


4)  We climb straight up towards the ridge of Mt Marsden.  It is a steep climb.


5)  Now at the top of the ridge, about 30 minutes of climbing from Glen Alice Road ~~~
From here, it is relatively flat to the summit of Mt Marsden ... towards south.
The forest is quite open, not much undergrowth, easy to walk through.


Lookout 1
GR 237 540

Along the ridge to the summit of Mt Marsden, there are many rocky areas by the cliff edge where you can get a good view of the valley below.

6)  This and the next 2 pics form a 200-degree panorama from one of the lookouts along the ridge to Mt Marsden summit.
- Red arrow: Mt Marsden summit, south-ish ... We are heading there.


7)  (Continuation to the right of previous pic) To enlarge the image, click on it.
- 3 red arrows from left to right:
       1 Haystack Mountain ... towards west
       2 Church Mountain
       3 Baldy Peak ... north-west-ish
- Small red dot: Where my car is parked ... by the side of Glen Alice Road
                          (The car is under the trees and can't be seen from where we are standing now.)


8)  (Continuation to the right of previous pic)
YM taking pictures  :-)


Pagoda-like rock formations on Mt Marsden Ridge

9)  We come to a set of pagoda-like rock formations ~~~
The 3 pics below form a 200-degree panorama:
- Upper pic: Facing backward
       • Yellow arrow: Direction of walk
- Middle pic: Facing east (Continuation to the right of upper pic)
- Lower pic: Facing forward (Continuation to the right of Middle pic)
       • Yellow arrow: Direction of walk
We didn't climb the rocks here ... with so many trees around, there may not be a view from their tops.


10)  Moving along, we come to another set of rocks.
- Red & cyan arrows: Same as the red & cyan arrows in photo #11


11)  Closer to the rocks of photo #10 ~~~
- Red & cyan arrows: Same as the red & cyan arrows in the previous pic


12)  From a slightly different angle ... This picture is the left half of the previous pic.


13)  I am on top of the red-arrow-pointed rock of photo #11, taking photographs of YM climbing to the top of the cyan-arrow-pointed rock.


Lookout 2
GR 239 535

14)  Here is another lookout along the Mt Marsden ridge.
- Upper pic:
       • Red arrow: Haystack Mountain ... towards west
- Lower pic: YM on top of the rock
       • 2 red arrow from left to right: Haystack Mountain & Church Mountain


15)  180-degree panorama from the lookout (To enlarge the image, click on it.)
- 5 red arrows from left to right:
       1 Bradleys Head
       2 Fitzgerald Mount
       3 Haystack Mountain ... west-ish
       4 Church Mountain
       5 Baldy Peak ... north-west-ish


Flora along Mt Marsden Ridge

16)  Grass Tree ... which species?


17)  Tea Tree flower ... which species?


18)  Isopogon anethifolius, commonly known as Narrow-Leaf Drumsticks


To Mt Marsden summit

19)  Passing this rock (All 3 pics below are of the same rock.)
- Yellow arrows: Direction of our walk
- Middle & lower pics: Looking back at the rock


20)  Looks like Mt Marsden summit ... but no, not yet. The summit is behind the rise and can't be seen yet.


21)  The 2 pic below are of the same rocks.
We are passing through them ... follow the yellow arrows.


Mt Marsden summit

22)  Finally we are facing Mt Marsden summit, about 1030 meters in elevation.
- It is quite flat around here. You hardly recognize it is as the summit.



Lookout 3, just south of Mt Marsden summit
Boundary of GR 240 523 / 241 523

23)  A few steps south of the summit is this lookout. The view is centred toward south ... towards Camp Flat area. (To enlarge the image, click on it.)
- Red arrow: 1040-meter Genowlan trig
- Red dotted line: Glen Alice Road


24)  Zooming into the middle of the previous pic ... towards south
- Red arrow: 1040-meter Genowlan trig


25)  Plenty of interesting Grass Trees near the lookout and the summit area ~~~
- Left pic: 2 trunks, 3 heads
- Right pic: 1 trunk, 2 heads


Lookout 4, west of Mt Marsden summit
GR 240 523

26)  We head to a lookout on the west side of the summit.
- Upper pic: The lookout is just ahead.
- Lower pic: This is it, the lookout.


27)  YM and I at the lookout


28)  Panorama from the lookout towards Camp Flat area
- Upper pic: Centred towards south
       • Background of previous pic is the left side of this pic.
       • Red arrow: 1040-meter Genowlan trig
       • Red dotted line: Glen Alice Road
- Lower pic: (Continuation to the right of the upper pic) Centred towards west
       • 4 red arrows from left to right:
            1 Bradleys Head
            2 Fitzgerald Mount ... west-ish
            3 Haystack Mountain
            4 Church Mountain


2 pagodas we are going to climb

29)  We now head towards 2 pagoda-like rock formations east of Mt Marsden summit.
- 3 arrows from left to right:
       1 Most interesting part of the Mt Marsden trip is to climb this pagoda ... not easy to climb, hence interesting  :-)
       2 On the other hand, this pagoda is easy.
       3 Tayan Pic, east-south-east-ish ... Please contact me if you intend to climb it, as I would love to climb it too.


Lookout 5 - a rocky outcrop
GR 242 525, almost at GR 243 525

30)  While on our way to the 2 pagodas mentioned in the previous pic, we pass by this rocky outcrop.
- Lower pic: At the red oval of the upper pic


31)  View from the rocky outcrop ~~~
Towards north-ish


To the easy-to-climb pagoda

32)  Close to the easy-to-climb pagoda ... It is behind the trees.
- Yellow arrow: Direction we are going ... we'll climb the pagoda from the left side.


33)  Passing this interesting rock which is located between the 2 pagodas mentioned in photo #29; and is to the left of the pagoda in the previous pic.


Easy-to-climb pagoda

34)  This is the top of the easy-to-climb pagoda, GR 245 524.
- The peak in the background is Mt Marsden summit.


35)  Another view of the top of the pagoda ~~~
- The peak in the background is Mt Marsden summit.
- Yellow arrow: Lookout 5, a rocky outcrop, photos #30 and #31


36)  This and the next 3 pics (photos #37, #38, #39) form a 360-degree panorama from the top of the pagoda.
- Yellow arrow: Harder-to-climb pagoda ... we are going there next.
- Red arrow: Tayan Pic, east-south-east-ish ... Please contact me if you intend to climb it, as I would love to climb it too.


37)  (Continuation to the right of previous pic) To enlarge the image, click on it.
- This pic is centred towards south; and is similar to the upper pic of photo #28.
- 1040-meter Genowlan trig
- Red dotted line: Glen Alice Road


38)  (Continuation to the right of previous pic)
- Red arrow: Mt Marsden summit ... towards west
- 2 yellow arrows from left to right:
       1 Lookout 6 ... Refer to photo #48.
       2 Lookout 5, a rocky outcrop ... Refer to photos #30 and #31.
- On the return trip:
       • We'll go to lookout 6, the yellow arrow on the left.
       • As it is not possible to go directly to the summit from there (a non-climbable cliff in between),
         we'll return to lookout 5 insted, the yellow arrow on the right.
       • From there to the summit.
       • Then back to the car.


39)  (Continuation to the right of previous pic) To enlarge the image, click on it.
- This pic is centred towards north; and is similar to photo #31.
- YM is looking at Mt Marsden summit, the previous pic.
- Yellow arrow: Harder-to-climb pagoda ... We are going there next.
- Continuation to the right of this pic is photo #36, thus completing a 360-degree panorama.


Harder-to-climb pagoda

We've climbed down the easy-to-climb pagoda ...

40)  ... Now approaching the harder-to-climb pagoda, GR 245 525 ~~~
We'll climb it from the far side.


41)  This is the pagoda we are going to climb.
- We are now on the far side of the pagoda of the previous pic.
- Yellow oval: Where we'll be climbing up ... Refer to photo #43.
- Mt Marsden is on the right side of the pic.


42)  Another look at the same pagoda ~~~
- Yellow oval: Where we'll be climbing up ... Refer to photo #43.


43)  The most interesting part of the Mt Marsden trip is to climb up this pagoda.
Here, YM is in action  :-)
From the 2 pics below, it looks as if there are plenty of footholds. But the pictures are illusory ... there isn't any meaningful foothold. You just have to haul yourself up by your arms to the ledge ... not easy  :-)


44)  I made it to the top of the pagoda  :-)
YM is here with me, but I don't have a photograph of him here  :-(
This pic and photos #45 and #46 form a 360-degree panorama.


45)  - Upper pic: (Continuation to the right of previous pic)
- Middle pic: (Continuation to the right of the upper pic)
- Lower pic: (Continuation to the right of the middle pic)
       • Tayan Pic, east-south-east-ish
       • Right edge of this pic is towards south-ish.


46)  (Continuation to the right of previous pic)
- Red arrow: The easy-to-climb pagoda ... We came from there.
- Left edge of this pic is towards south-ish.
- Continuation to the right of this pic is photo #44, thus completing a 360-degree panorama.


47)  Time to climb down the pagoda ~~~
- YM is at the same spot where his hands were in photo #43 when he was climbing up.
- I'll lower myself down from the red circle.


Return to Mt Marsden summit

After climbing the pagodas, It is time to return to Mt Marsden summit ... But first, walk along the cliff edge to another rocky outcrop, lookout 6.


Lookout 6
GR 243 524

48)  At lookout 6 on the cliff edge ~~~
- 3 red arrows from left to right:
       1 Harder-to-climb pagoda
       2 Easy-to-climb pagoda
       3 Tayan Pic, east-south-east-ish


Back at Mt Marsden summit

49)  Mt Marsden summit is somewhere in front  :-)
- As mentioned in photos #22, it is very flat around the summit.
- Compared to photo #22, we are now facing the summit from a different direction.


Return to car

To return to the car, just retrace our steps.

50)  We come to the same rock formations as in photos #11 and #12.
Here, we are facing north-ish; whereas in photo #11, we are facing south-ish.
- Upper pic:
       • YM is on the right edge.
       • The rock near the left edge is the same as the rock on the right side of photo #12.
       • The rock on the right side of the pic is the same as the red-arrow-pointed rock in photo #11.
- Lower pic: (Continuation to the right of the upper pic)
       • YM is on the left edge.
       • The rock near the right edge is the same as the cyan-arrow-pointed rock in photo #11.


51)  Now almost at Glen Alice Road and my car ... about to cross a run-down fence across the centre of the pic ... the same fence as in photo #3.


Comment

The entire trip is 5 hours ... a nice little saunter suitable for the winter months when daylight hours are shorter.

Make sure you climb the pagodas, photos #32 to #47 ... They are interesting !

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