I went for a bushwalk with Babs and the kidlets to a brand new location.
We normally go for bushwalks in Glenrock State Conservation Reserve as there are bundles of different tracks that you can take and the Reserve is so huge that you can always find something new. However, Glenrock lacks waterfalls. We decided to head down and check out Somersby Falls on the Central Coast of NSW to get our waterfall fix (and ensure that TLC’s Waterfalls was stuck in mine and Babs’ head for the rest of the day.
My first impression? Damn, this is touristy. There were a fair few people there having picnics and taking photographs of the main waterfall. The path, stairs and platforms are all built very well and make heading down to the ‘falls really easy (for those of us who do not have accessibility issues). To be frank, it was quite disappointing. We’re used to dirt tracks, few people, and not having some random blasting music from a portable stereo and completely freakin’ ruining the atmosphere.
Seriously, who takes a stereo on a nature walk? Why can’t you just enjoy the sounds of the nature around you? There are waterfalls and birds. WATERFALLS AND BIRDS.
I was lamenting all of the things I’ve just mentioned when I noticed a little track down the side of the creek. BOOM. We had our adventure sorted. Very few people were using it, preferring to stay among the man-made aspects of the ‘falls, so we finished off our picnic lunch and headed down alongside the creek.
What a fantastic decision that was! The sights completely redeemed Somersby Falls for me. We were greeted with a waterfall that you could walk behind and under, muddy paths, green moss, creatures in the water and the beautiful ambience of the nature surrounding us.
We continued exploring until, suddenly, I realised I needed to poo. Sorry to take you from beautiful waterfalls to shit, but I did allude to it in the title of this post.
I was faced with a choice: stop exploring and turn around or brave a poo in the middle of the bush with no supplies. Why couldn’t I just hold it? An operation when I was 17 means I’m devoid of a gall bladder and have been given endless poo-related stories to share due to my inability to hold it in.
There were no people around us and we came up with a few different options:
- Head further into the bush and do my business. Use moss or leaves as paper if needed.
- Submerge my butt into the creek and let the water wash away any mess.
- Use a large hole we just found as a squat toilet.
- Poo near the creek and use water to wash away any mess.
- Turn around and home I can hold it in long enough to poo in the toilet riiiiiiight at the start of the track.
I opted to turn around.
- We hadn’t brought any toilet paper (which I would need to put into my backpack after it had been used – I’m not a litterer, especially in the beautiful bush!).
- I didn’t trust the moss and leaves as a good toilet paper option.
- I thought something would probably bite me if I went in the bush.
- I wasn’t keen on using the random hole we found in case something lived in there. (Babs helpfully added, “Nothing would live in there after you’re done.”)
- Can something swim up your butt if you take a dump in the water? Also, didn’t want to watch the poo float down the creek.
Oddly enough, having my family watch me take a dump in the bush wasn’t the thing holding me back. It was all the other ‘risks’.
We made it to the top of the track half an hour later (after a quick stop to run under the waterfall with Kidlet #1) and I embraced the man-made aspects of Somersby Falls with a newfound appreciation. I hadn’t soiled myself.
What we took: a backpack containing water, a picnic lunch, a towel and a phone. Everyone wore a hat and had their own water bottle.
What we needed: I needed a greater sense of my bowels, but toilet paper and a plastic bag for rubbish wouldn’t have gone astray.
How to get there:
Here’s a map. Or…
From Newcastle – head south towards Gosford and take the Gosford turn off on the M1. Turn right once you’ve taken the exit and then go straight until you see the signs. Follow them!
From Sydney – head north towards Newcastle and take the Gosford turn off on the M1. Turn left once you’ve taken the exit and go straight until you see the signs. Like the Newcastle visitors, follow them!