We met up with more of the Walksport Crowd at Manly Wharf at around 9:00am and set off towards The Spit. The walk is undulating and spectacular; the views of the harbour are amazing. You walk past Forty Baskets beach, Reef beach, Castle Rock beach, Grandma's beach and Clontarf Beach. Then up and over The Spit Bridge. This was where the first group left us with 10km firmly in their legs. The blue BLUE harbour was a highlight, offset by the challenging terrain that really test you.
After lunch and a rest, we were off again towards Taronga Zoo. The terrain doesn't ease up - it's still bumpy but the views are beautiful. We walked past Koosha beach, Edwards beach and Balmoral beach as well as the Gunners Barracks, Chowder Bay, Bradleys Head on the way to Taronga Zoo. The majority of this walk is through the Sydney Harbour National Park, with the paths clearly marked and the canopy of vegetation keeping us cool. When we arrived at the zoo, our next group left me to catch the ferry back to Circular Quay, with a well-earned 20km or 30km recorded on their Walksport app.
From the zoo to Circular Quay, I was on my own. I followed the Bondi2Manly app when I couldn't see a whale sign with a directional arrow (usually pretty obvious) and I didn't take (many) wrong turns. The walk goes around Little Sirius Cove following the Foreshore Walk, onto the Cremorne Point Walk, along the wharf at the Sub Base Platypus, the Ensemble Theatre, Kirribilli and Admiralty House over the Sydney Harbour Bridge and around to Wharf 3 Circular Quay - where I started in the morning. 46.5km. One more set of stairs up to Macquarie Street, then my walk home to Darlinghurst.
Along Gap Bluff Walking track we spot whales - just off shore. We can hear them blow, see them breaching and slapping their fins. They had quite an audience along the fences. We head south past the Macquarie Lighthouse, Christison Park with its spectacular views of the city skyline and down into Bondi Beach along to Icebergs to ensure that my fellow walkers clock a full 20km and their day of walking is now complete. One of them had completed 20km the day before, so 40km in total for the weekend - a huge achievement! I grab a drink and head home (up the hill) to Darlinghurst.
Day two was shorter and the terrain was easier, although still challenging. I clocked up a total of 94km over the weekend (including walks to and from start/end points). I stepped up 263 flights of stairs over the two days.