Mount Budawang & Corang Peak
Mongarlowe Travel Blog› entry 1 of 5 › view all entries
There is nothing at the top of Mount Budawang except a fire tower and terrain unsuitable for camping. We learnt the hard way - after hiking up the (rocky, steep) fire trail for several hours with full packs. We made it to the bottom by sunset and decided to camp there for the night. Strong winds made for an unsettling night (the bush takes on a life of its own at night).
Next morning, we made it to the Wog Wog entrance of Morton National Park. The trail is easy to follow at first and took us through varied terrain - open wood-like bush, thick scrubby areas and grassy plains. We did spend a few worried moments searching for the trail where everywhere looked the same. We reached a pleasant campsite by the Corang river in the early afternoon. A family who were camped there kindly gave us a topographical map of the area, and we decided to push on.
As the sun started to descend, we found ourselves battling thick scrub and climbing up & over rocks (actually called rock ribs due to their formation). We were heading up a large hill on one of the "negotiable routes", ie. not quite the well-trodden path. A couple of close encounters with resistant branches caused some minor bloodshed. With the prospect of a cold night ahead and that sinking feeling that we may not be on the right track, we pushed on, and eventually the trail headed down into a valley.
A flat, grassy space off the trail was the perfectly placed campsite, and we put our tent up just as night fell. The full moon rose over the valley later that night and, in comparison to the previous night, everything was so still and quite beautiful.
In the morning, we found frost everywhere and sheets of ice on the tent. It had been a cold night indeed. We passed through a marshy area and saw a few other campers who told us there were a few "rock scrambles" ahead on the ascent of Corang Peak. These turned out to be steep conglomerate rock faces that need to be climbed quickly, ie. don't stop to think about what might happen if you lean back and your pack unbalances you!
The view from Corang Peak was pretty special; we could see down into the valley where we had spent the night and across into the distant hills (we would come back to explore those the next year). Traversing along the peak itself was easy enough, in some places assisted by wooden planks which formed a walkway. There was nothing particularly distinctive about the walk back except it was stress-free, and the last part of the trail backtracks along the original path back to the car.