Rennix Walk, Kosciuszko National Park, NSW, Australia
Leaning, spreading, snow gums provide a modicum of shade over the car park at Rennix Gap.
One of the many beauties of Kosciuszko National Park in Australia’s alpine Snowy Mountains, is the assortment of walking trails. This makes it easy to find a walk to suit the weather, one’s mood, and the abilities of any walking companions.
The 6.5 kilometre walk from Rennix Gap to a Snowy Hydro radio repeater station, high on a ridge, is not a track I follow often. Although it is a pleasant 4-5 hour walk out and back, there are some moderately challenging inclines, and the lower areas can be very boggy and wet. When I have guests, I usually pick an easier walk or one with more dramatic views.
Having said that, the Rennix Walk is the first place I ever spotted the vibrant flame robin, or saw an echidna in the wild, and the track winds through some very pretty landscape. It was a sunny afternoon in early November – that is: late spring in the antipodes – the last time my husband and I decided to make the trek.
Rennix Walk follows an old management trail and starts by crossing grassy flats.
You need to stay on the track: the ground is boggy and wet – especially after the snow melts of spring.
Got the essentials? Hat, sunscreen, water, bug spray, and we might want the walking sticks on the hills.
Sawpit Creek winds its way through the boggy plain.
The trail climbs up through bush and snow gums and past giant granite boulders.
The “bridge” over Stewarts Creek comprises some well-weathered boards.
From Lakes Creek Saddle there are views across the wetlands to Kosciuszko’s Main Range.
The alpine plants and snow grasses spring to life in the ground water soaking down from the surrounding hills.
The bark of the stately snow gums is always a work of natural abstract art.
Fallen trees are part of the cycle of the landscape.
The Reddish Bog Heath (epacris glacialis) [I think?] has just started blooming.
The walk rises up and crosses gorse-filled clearings.
The Leafy Bossiaea (bossiaea foliosa) [I think?] has also started to flower.
I have no idea what the growth at the base of this tree trunk is, but it made for some interesting textures.
The top of Giants Castle affords great views, but the ascent is only recommended for experienced climbers.
From a safer rocky vantage point, there are nice views of Lake Jindabyne, far below.
The landscape in the other direction stretches out over the Snowy River and up to the Main Range.
The next granite outcrop, which to me looks like a pair of rabbits, signals that we are close to the apex.
The top of the walk is marked by a rather un-photogenic repeater station, which sits atop more granite boulders. Again, the climb can be a little challenging, so we opted for a short sit and a muesli bar before returning back the way we had come.
Snow Daisies (brachyscome nivalis) are scattered across the ground.
Alpine Rusty-Pods (hovea montana) stand out against the alpine grasses.
Once we are back at Lakes Creek Saddle, we know it is all a gentle walk downhill.
White Purslane (neopaxia australasica) dots the granite-strewn path as we head back to the car.
Rennix Gap was named for W.E. Rennix, an engineer and surveyor who died after being caught in a blizzard in the area. We were much more fortunate: I lost (and found) my mobile phone, the boggy ground took its toll on the soles of my favourite old hiking boots, and we returned to the car a little wet and worn out.
In short, it was an enjoyable afternoon, and we were able to bask in self satisfaction as we clinked our glasses over dinner that evening.
To your health!