Aliens, Gorgeous River Views, and Glow Worm Tunnel

Thongs and Queenslanders in the Aussie snow 2018 – DAY TWO

Below you will find a detailed description of the route as seen through the eyes of its creator to give you firsthand knowledge of the type of experiences available along this route

The Below map is for reference guide only with interactive info on locations along the route.

A fully interactive and directional guide map is available with the Road Trips printable detailed itinerary for $5 using the below button(coming soon)

 Laurieton NSW to Helensburgh (405km 4.42hrs)


The next morning on the road again we find the hills disappearing beneath clouds as fog almost kisses the road surface. Glimpses of mist hugging expansive rivers with a magical ora…and it’s nearing 11.30am, definitely not in Queensland anymore.

Towering power aliens into the distance, stepping over mile-long snaking freight train carriages. As mysterious as it had appeared the fog leaves us in the awe of blue against green hills as we play leapfrog with the odd semi or two. We have hit the central coast; Gum trees are now starting to hug tightly, knitted to the rocky mountainsides. The full and classic Aussie bush now almost bowing to the stretch of road as it leans forward and dances with every passing vehicle.

1. MOONEY MOONEY POINT NSW Deerubbun Reserve

Mooney Mooney Point was a beautiful little lunch stop beside the Hwy with expansive views of the Hawkesbury River and the Hawkesbury River bridges. Found the old stumps on the shoreline and even mangroves  that looked stunning with the filtered light through them

We parked for the night on a clearing just off Old farms Rd that backed onto some forest (I believe owned by Coal Mine). 

On the road again the roadworks are starting to increase the mundane, but the gorgeous rocky outcrops are starting to periodically appear to the left and right. The crisscrossing of roads is becoming more regular as do the rock walls now bordering the Hwy. Cranes, construction, and congestion are almost instantaneous as we hit the ‘welcome to Sydney’ sign.zzzzzzzz 2 1/2hrs later we emerge from the wall of red tail lights….and only 92km done haha.

Saved from the city traffic hell by the gorgeous long-trunk trees flanking the windy roads, as we make our way through Helensburgh. A nice quiet street with a generous clearing to one side, and backing onto the bush suffices for a good free night stop. The wolf-like huge shaggy old german shepherd wandering around was daunting at first but he was oblivious…or blind, not sure lol. 

UPDATE: the spot we stopped at has now been cordoned off with giant concrete boulders. There are some pretty tight streets, but the other spot we had mapped out (for self-contained vehicles, or just a rest stop) is a vacant patch of grass along Old Station rd (North end of Norm O’Brion Park) alternate night spot at Coledale(more info in printable details sheet)


Now for a bit more adventure. A relatively easy walk in the crisp evening air takes us to the Old Rail tunnel. Now nighttime in the mountains in a dark tunnel may not be the idea of fun for most, but as we entered the tunnel from the pitch black the magical display of sparkling lights was entrancing. Apparently one of the largest glowworm colonies in NSW. The tunnel was built in the 1880s but closed because it became too dangerous because of the build-up of soot and smoke. It was then sealed up for some time and used as a water reservoir. 

To our delight part of the tracks are still present adding to the magical mood as we stepping stoned over the puddles along the tracks further into the tunnel. the wet weather seemed so fitting considering its history.

Obviously, the glow worms are loving the cool damp wet as they reached way on into the tunnel and an end that we never reached. Cold toes and fingers, and a little scary for some.  Standing in the quiet darkness, waiting for photos to process was a bit much, so we headed out sooner than I would have liked.

This is what happens when you take small kids on a shoot haha. One child whining and the other constantly wanted me to get out of the shot for her own photo 

NEXT: Floating Bridge, Blow Hole, and picturesque Coastal Villages