30 Sep 2018

Into the Blue Mountains - Evans Lookout to Junction Rock loop

Car turn around on dirty road finished as great walk through the stunning wildness. Walking down and climbing up the canyon made this trip just as perfect as it was.

Two hours drive with car turn around

Our second day of the long weekend we planned to go to the Blue Mountains. We wanted to visit some less crowded location, so by looking at the Google Maps, I outlined two potential locations we could go to. The first location was Mount Hay and Butterbox Point which is deep inside the mountains and can be accessed only by driving up (and down) the dirty road. The second location was Evans Lookout which was easier to access, and possibly more crowded than the first one.

After we finished our morning coffee, we started 2 hours long drive into the Blue Mountains. As it was dry weather we decided to go to the Mount Hay and Butterbox Point. After about 1 hour and 30 minutes driving we came to the dirty road that leads up into the mountain. At first it looked very easy and accessible. As we were driving deeper, the road was getting worse and worse. Also, there was a lot of hills and we had a small car. After passing around 3 kilometers of dirty road we came to huge descent, down the hill. And also, there were 9 more kilometers to our final destination. At that moment, we had to decide, if we will continue our trip to the Mount Hay and Butterbox Point and possibly, stuck with the car, or we will turn around and go on to the Evans Lookout.

The final decision was to turn around and drive for the Evans Lookout. It was pretty easy to turn around and leave dirty road far behind. On the way back, the only vehicles we saw were 4WD SUVs, so honestly, I don’t think that we had any chance :).

Evans Lookout

Evans Lookout is not far from the Mount Hay and Butterbox Point, so we came to our destination very fast. We parked the car on first parking we found, before hitting Evans Lookout, so we had to do 1 kilometer walk. We didn’t mind it, as the desire for walking is the main reason why we were going to this trip.

When we came to the Evans Lookout we were astonished with a beautiful view down the canyon. Also we were very sceptic if we were able to do the walk, as it was going down the canyon into the valley, and after some valley walk, back up to the top of the mountain. But, how can you know without trying. We had enough food and water to go with.

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Quality mountain walk

From Evans Lookout we headed to the Govetts Leap Lookout. It was quick 3 kilometers walk to the top of the canyon which took around 30 minutes. Govetts Leap Lookout has similar stunning view on to the valley as Evans Lookout. From the Govetts Leap Lookout we headed down into the valley. It was a tough walk because the whole way is nothing but wet rocks covered by moss and grass. It is easy to get hurt there. After 15 minutes of walk we came to the Govetts Leap falls, which is at the bottom of the canyon.

Govetts Leap falls were overcrowded with people, some of them were having a lunch, some taking a bath, which made us to continue our walk and leave a lunch for later. After 2 hours of walk we took a break in the middle of the valley. As there was no one around for some time, we could enjoy our lunch. There was no that many people walking through the valley, compared to the lookouts and below the waterfall.

After we finished the lunch we kept walking. Soon we started to ascend up to the mountain. That was end of our enjoyable walk through the valley. Climbing was not very interesting, but was tough and good training for legs. After 1 hour of climbing, we finally came to the top, back to the Evans Lookout.

Drive back home

Walk over 13 kilometers took us around 4 hours and 30 minutes. It was the time to go back home. Driving back was much easier then driving to the mountains. It was also faster and took us around 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Conclusion

Blue Mountains is very vast area and there are plenty of trails where you can walk or run. I am happy how we passed the route, as this was our first time there. I would strongly suggest planning your trip to the mountains in advance and, if possible, to have the route and map offline. It is very possible that in some parts of the wildness phone signal is not available. During our walk through the valley our phone was offline most of the time. We made to come back to the Evans Lookout only because we were always turning right on every intersection. When we came to the top we realized that we were climbing up to the mountain on the trail built only for horses, different than recommended climbing route.

Evans Lookout to Junction Rock loop walk has very stunning nature and is an excellent workout. It was worth every moment.