This walk is one of three summit walks, the shortest one, located between the ‘town centres’ of Woden and Tuggeranong which I had discounted for over 20 years as offering little of interest to walkers, other than locals seeking exercise for themselves and or their dogs. I hadn’t expected much in the way of scenery. As it happens, I was wrong in relation to all three walks.
That said, for this walk I deliberately took the shortest route to the summit, through a wooded area, knowing that views along the way would be limited. I did this to save time and because I had, earlier in the day, did the Urambi Hills summit walk which afforded me similar views to those I would have had had I taken a longer route option on this walk, particularly westwards towards the Brindabella mountains. The 360 degree views as I approached the summit and from the summit did not disappoint though.
The 1.3 kilometres return walk which I could easily have completed in thirty minutes was well worth doing and comes highly recommended. I took me around an hour to complete the walk but I will come back to that later.
I started the walk in Lincoln Place in Chapmam, at the end of the cul de sac, which, together with surrounding streets, contains some rather grand houses with vistas out towards the city (Canberra). There is ample on-street parking here, I just had to be careful not to block resident’s driveways.
Shortly after starting the walk, and in particular while crossing a small footbridge, I felt a sense of déjà vu. Was it really déjà vu or had I done this walk before, and merely forgotten about it?
Soon I had confirmation, via the sighting of a Canberra Centenary Trail route maker, that I had indeed been here before. In fact, having competed the 145 kms Centenary Trail, a fantastic walk around the sprawling city of Canberra, twice I had (surprise, surprise) done about half of this walk (though not to the summit) twice before.
On reaching the top of the rise depicted above, and another Centenary Trail marker about half way along the walk, I turned left towards the summit along a somewhat narrower path than had I continued on along the Centenary Trail.
There are some good views out towards the Brindabella mountains from the turn-off area.
Continuing on towards the summit along the well trodden path there are quite a few steps along the way but unless steps present a particular problem the incline is fairly modest and you only need to endure the steps for less than ten minutes, going at a slow pace.
Before I knew it I was at the top (765 metres above sea level), marked by the ubiquitous trig point used across Australia, particularly in urban areas, to mark hilltops.
Here I was amply rewarded with great 360 degree views, north towards Woden and Canberra City, south towards Tuggeranong and Tidbinbilla, westwards to the Murrumbidgee River valley and the Brindabella Ranges and, to the east, a view of Mt Taylor, the subject of one of the other two walks I referred to earlier.
So why did I spend an hour doing a walk that I could easily have been done in 30 minutes ( or 40 with ten minutes to admire the view from the top)? Well the answer lies in a swing chair attached to the trig point. Look carefully at the picture above.
I am not sure how this came to be here (or if it is still there). Perhaps some thoughtful soul felt it was a nice addition – and indeed it was – or the owner having put it up for a rest forgot to take it with them on leaving. In any event I settled down into it and while admiring the view fell asleep and remained in a state of slumber for the best part of half an hour before awakening and heading back down the hill.