We drove to the Blue Mountains via the scenic route - so via a back road with tiny townships that were scattered with dilapidated huts and mansions as you went along. The ferry across the Hawkesbury was at a place called Wisemans' Ferry. Wiseman was an ex-convict who had a sense for business. Ended up running the ferry and the only pub in the area - became a local hero hence the name of the town. Beautiful area, and we picnic-ed there for lunch. They had free BBQs so Glen disappeared for 5 min to return with some 'snags' (sausages) - unfortunately sausages are beef here as they never had the mad cow disease scare in Australia - so I am left out of sausage dining :( I'll survive.
We got to the Blue Mountains at 3-ish and went for a meander to the Three Sisters. Our house was within 5 min of the trail which was great. I saw a wombat hole along the way (no wombat though - they apparently favour night time).
The next morning we started walking at 8am (after Glen had cooked his fried breakfast of course). We climbed down from the Three Sisters via the Giant Staircase. Very steep and weather/tourist worn, so not for the feint hearted. And am very glad we weren't climbing up them!
Once at the bottom we walked through the valley and saw lots of plants (that Glen couldn't identify - he's a rubbish tour guide) and also some Lyre birds. They're on the 10 cent coin. They scratch around in the bush to get grubs and stuff. A bit shy though, so as soon as the Oriental tourist groups showed up with loud clicking cameras and guides, all the wildlife became scarce.
At the end of the trail there were some easy walks around mining artefacts and a few information boards about the rainforest plants - so at least I found out what some of the plants were!
We then caught the Scenic Railway up to the top of the valley - it climbs steeply (apparently the world's steepest railway) and gets you to the top within a minute. The angle feels like you're going to fall forward throughout!
Then we got the Sky Way (cable car) across the valley back to the Three Sisters. It was hilarious - all the Japanese/Chinese tourists jumped when the glass floor revealed itself below!
Upon reaching the main side, we swiftly went to the RSL club (local pub) to meet the rest of the group. They were on the beers and betting on the horses (as is the norm) - we stayed for one and then moved on to other adventures.
We aimed to eat at Leura, although all menus had more syllables than ingredients so we were scared off to a pub on the outsude of town - beautiful view over the freeway! Great chicken burger though.
We attempted to find Leura falls, but Glen's wonderous decision 'to go left' rather than my suggestion right meant we walked an extra hour to a dried-up Gordan falls instead. OK - it wasn't completely dry - but wasn't worth the mission to get there! Nevermind - we accidently bumped into some lost senior citizens on the way back, and told them it was mostly downhill in that direction. On our advice they went that way, and we felt awful when we realised how much uphill bits there were! Oops - hopefully they made it...
After all that we headed back to the Central Coast as we had a date with a couple of Glen's mates to watch Manly play the Dragons in the evening. At 28 degrees outside and in a non-air conditioned truck, I was grateful for my long bath when I got back!