This hike was a tough one. Though it probably shouldn't have been. Clocking in at around 10 or so kilometres, the trek from Berowra to Mount Kuring-gai via Naa Badu lookout on a section of the Great North Walk can generally be knocked out in a few hours.
The morning I tackled it I started out a little later than I'd planned, that combined with my many photo jaunts meant that I spent the final couple of hours — slicked in a layer of greasy sunscreen and sweat — hiking up a reasonably steep gully in 32 degree Sydney summer heat.
The last half a kilometre on the sealed road between the trailhead and the highway took all of my effort to not collapse in a sweaty heap. I was exhausted.
Dreaming of an icy lemon Calippo and motivated by the thought of drinking something that wasn't the now warm water in my day pack, I slowly made my way. Euphoria looked like a highway with a train station on one side and a grocery store on other.
All of that aside, I'm glad I did this stretch of track with its soft morning light through the trees, deafening cicada sounds of summer, the stunning view from the lookout over the tree filled valley and its winding creek, the ferns, creekside saltmarsh, sandstone caves, and the tiny cascades and rock pools under the shade of tall trees in the gully.