Great South West Walk Day 3

Forest: Cut Out Camp to Fitzroy Camp (22km)

Beautiful morning without any wind. In fact it was so calm I could hear even the smallest birds chirp in the trees. I really enjoyed my morning at Cut Out Camp and it looked like a sunny and promising day.

Just when I had finished packing up and left the campsite, I met Gordon again. He had installed the information board at Cut Out Camp on the previous day, but now returned to remove the supporting frame that kept the bonded pieces in place.

Cut Out Camp
Cut Out Camp

It started to get hot really quickly and I tried to use the cooler hours before noon to walk as many kilometres as possible, so I could take it easy in the afternoon sun.

What struck me the most on that day was the change in vegetation. Beautiful dry forest in the morning, then long stretches of forest that had completely burnt down in a bushfire not long ago. Regrowth was in full swing and provided some fascinating views. With the rising temperatures though I got increasingly nervous about traversing a large bushfire area far away from any other people.

Regrowth after bushfire
Regrowth after bushfire

Shortly after crossing a forest road there was a short boardwalk over what looked like a swampy area. When I was there is was all dried up, but it clearly looked like the whole area might be flooded at other times of the year.

At 12 noon I arrived at Cobboboonee Camp for a short lunch break and an opportunity to sit down in the shade of the shelter and treat scratches and blisters. I thought about staying for the night, but the day was still young and I felt fit enough, so I decided to walk on.

Forest road
Forest road

Walking in the afternoon sun turned out to be a challenge. The forest became more dense, without any wind, and the heat was difficult. I had filled up my water bottle at Cobboboonee Camp but neglected to fill my water bladder as well. I wanted to save weight and thought the bottle would be enough for the few kilometres to Fitzroy, but in hindsight it was a bad decision.

It was a beautiful walk over to Fitzroy camp, with a few forest road crossings. But when I arrived around 5pm, later than estimated, I was totally exhausted and had to lay down for a bit before setting up camp. Without sufficient water, walking in the heat was not a good idea.

Unknown bird
Unknown bird

Fitzroy was another beautiful camp, very quiet with a lot of birdlife, and again, I was the only visitor. There was plenty of firewood so I started a campfire to boil some water later in the evening. The water in the main water had an awful stench, but fortunately there was another tank at the toilet block that provided better water quality.

Even after darkness set in it was still so hot that I was sweating in my tent. But with the starlit night and the moon shining bright I was really happy, reflecting on another great day when checking my photos before going to sleep.

Fitzroy Camp
Fitzroy Camp

Wildlife seen: Crimson Rosella, Eastern Yellow Robin, various other birds.