Beginners day trip to the Upper Allyn (near Barrington Tops)

#1
G'day all.
As a newbie, I thought I'd share my first day trek to Mt Allyn lookout in Chichester State Forest NSW (not far from Barrington tops), as I thought it may be of interest to anyone that was looking for a good starting point to gain experience, or just for a day out with great scenery. It was just the one car, my 100 series cruiser, and had a mate riding along with me(the former owner). I had just downloaded the ExploreOz App and maps on my Android tablet the night before, so I was using that for navigation(and learning how to use it as we went along). We headed off from East Gresford, and headed up the Allyn River Rd, which is sealed for quite a long way. We continued on just following the main dirt road that follows the river, until we came to fork with a sign that sent us off to the left. The roads to this point were very well maintained dirt. We carried on along the Paterson forest Rd past Shellbrook forest Rd, which branches off to the left, with a sign indicating that the road goes thru to Gresford, via Lostock Dam. The road starts to climb from about here and gets a little rougher, mainly rockier but not requiring 4WD. Once you get close to the top there is a sign indicating the road off to the left goes to the lookout. This track does get a bit narrow for cars to pass on, so you need to be aware, and does get a bit more rocky and rougher. Once up there the views are fantastic, and if you want you can go further up on foot and there is a better viewing area. On the way back down we stuck to the same route, but when we got to the Shellbrook Rd turn, we decided to try going that way back home, and have a kook at Lostock Dam. It soon became apparent that this track hadn’t been used regularly for quite a while. We pressed on downhill until we crossed a bridge over a small creek, and then saw that the track was pretty cut up with deep tyre ruts and was damp and slippery. You could also see that someone with quite aggressive MT’S had been through recently as well. There was room to get your tyres either side of the ruts reasonably safely, and I’m pretty sure we could have got through on that track, but as we were solo, and I’m a beginner, and we didn’t have “self” recovery gear, or mobile reception, I decided to err on the side of caution, and turn around and head back. So we continued back the way we came in until we got back to the first main junction, and turned left back onto the Allyn River Rd, past Ladies Well until we crossed the river, and turned right onto( Lagoon Pinch Forest Rd-Google) or (Salisbury Rd-ExploreOz topo), and started heading back towards Dungog. When we reached Chichester Dam Rd, we decided to take a quick look at the dam seeing we were so close. Not a bad little spot for a picnic. From here we headed home via Dungog. For me, this was a 350Klm round trip from Lake Macquarie, but it was well worth it for the experience and just seeing some amazing Australian countryside. Hope this may be of some help to any other Newbies out there looking for a beginner trek. I’m not sure how to do it, but I’ll try to post a link to a google map that I made of the trip.
Pete and Dave's excellent 4WD adventure to Mt Allyn https://goo.gl/maps/5pdpXA2rj6E2
Cheers and Beers.
Dave
 
#2
Hey there , we was up there today. After we had a stop at the lookout we swung a right down that track . we turned round not far past the bridge as looked to get a bit tough. I had the wife and kids in the car and without knowing how rough it gets, i was not risking getting stuck.
Was a great day out .
Dave
 

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#3
Hey there , we was up there today. After we had a stop at the lookout we swung a right down that track . we turned round not far past the bridge as looked to get a bit tough. I had the wife and kids in the car and without knowing how rough it gets, i was not risking getting stuck.
Was a great day out .
Dave
Yeah mate, that's as far as I went as well. Just me and the mate in the one car and no winch, so turned around there as well. I'm pretty sure it would have been ok but I took the safe option. Will go back and try again when I've got some sort of self recovery gear or another car to help if needed.
Cheers.
Dave
 

Rhett HS

Well-Known Member
#4
The mountaineer track used to be a great adventure before they gated it. So sad.

Whispering Gully was also an adventure, on foot. I went there then abseiled down the waterfalls, walking and swimming down the creek for a few kilometres, canyoning like.
 
#5
Hey there , we was up there today. After we had a stop at the lookout we swung a right down that track . we turned round not far past the bridge as looked to get a bit tough. I had the wife and kids in the car and without knowing how rough it gets, i was not risking getting stuck.
Was a great day out .
Dave
The mountaineer track used to be a great adventure before they gated it. So sad.

Whispering Gully was also an adventure, on foot. I went there then abseiled down the waterfalls, walking and swimming down the creek for a few kilometres, canyoning like.
sounds amazing!
 
#6
Yeah mate, that's as far as I went as well. Just me and the mate in the one car and no winch, so turned around there as well. I'm pretty sure it would have been ok but I took the safe option. Will go back and try again when I've got some sort of self recovery gear or another car to help if needed.
Cheers.
Dave
That’s it mate , always better to have a back up . I thought about going on but may have got worse with nowhere to turn around. I’m a New by as well
 

2002GU3

Well-Known Member
#7
Hi guys, always better to be cautious than damage your cars or yourselves, keep an eye on the trip section, there are always trips being organised and "newbies" are always welcome to tag along, it's a great way to learn about 4x4 driving and get some experience (there is a wealth of knowledge on this site) and there's somebody to help with recovery should it be necessary....You could also post your own trips and see if anyone wants to go with you !...........Jim.
 
#9
Hi guys, always better to be cautious than damage your cars or yourselves, keep an eye on the trip section, there are always trips being organised and "newbies" are always welcome to tag along, it's a great way to learn about 4x4 driving and get some experience (there is a wealth of knowledge on this site) and there's somebody to help with recovery should it be necessary....You could also post your own trips and see if anyone wants to go with you !...........Jim.
Thanks Jim, I’ll keep my eye out .
 
#10
The mountaineer track used to be a great adventure before they gated it. So sad.

Whispering Gully was also an adventure, on foot. I went there then abseiled down the waterfalls, walking and swimming down the creek for a few kilometres, canyoning like.
Can you do it without abseiling or in reverse? Love to do a bit of canyoning up there but dont know of anywhere near me in Newcastle?
 

Rhett HS

Well-Known Member
#11
Can you do it without abseiling or in reverse? Love to do a bit of canyoning up there but dont know of anywhere near me in Newcastle?
When i was there yonks ago there was a white rock on the side of the mountaineer track, maybe a blaze on a tree too, then a sparse trail of white rocks and a faded but visible walking track, which took you to the top of a waterfall(s). From that point its too hard or impossible to walk down. That is the most canyon like part of the trip i did.

If you came in lower you can probably go up or down the river depending on the direction you want to go, downstream is easier and can be more fun.

I possibly still have a topographical map at home with some tidbits scrawled on it. We walked out on a 4wd track marked on the topographical map of the era. It joined the river to the mountaineer, it may not have been driven much before the mountaineer was closed, and possibly never afterwards. Adding to the epic challenge!
 
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