It seems everyone in Canberra knows Mt Taylor. Along with Black Mountain and Mt Ainslie, it’s one of the most easily recognisable. Mt Tennent looms up behind it in the same shape (positively skewed distributions!) at almost double the height, but from some distances they look like twins. Mt Taylor was the first walk Boyfriend and I ever did together, and is popular with many of my Twitter friends. With warmer weather today, what better time to revisit it?
There are a number of entrances and trails to the top of Mt Taylor, but we do the one I know best. We park on Sulwood Drive, just past the turn off to Mannheim Crescent, where plenty of cars are parked. We’re on Mrs Low’s Firetrail.
I am not sure who Mrs Low was, but I assume she liked steep and not particularly direct tracks. This track meanders a little along a fence line, passing a field of kangaroos, before turning into the real guts of the mountain.
It’s almost midday and, while I know it’s a popular walk, it feels like half of Canberra is here – a big call for a long weekend! We pass plenty of people coming the other way, including a handful of whippets.
From a gravel dirt track, it turns into a more concreted pathway. It does flatten out eventually, and two park benches are placed on some flatter areas of the mountain with some of the best views you’ll see over the Tuggeranong Valley.
From here, the path becomes steps for quite a way, helping us travel a great height quite quickly.
It’s then more steep gravel (but not particularly loose – good for clumsy people like me!) and a few more turns to the top. There’s a broadcasting station (?) to the right, and then a few more huff and puffs to the trig at 856m (Mt Majura is the highest mountain in Canberra at 888m).
From the trig, there are views in all directions, but particularly the northern side of Canberra with Black Mountain and Mt Ainslie. The ranges to the west make a striking backdrop at any time of day.
Someone (?) brings up litres of water for dogs in milk bottles, and places them with a bowl near the picnic tables at the top.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a Canberra walk without spotting some wildlife. We see quite a few birds, and of course, some more kangaroos. As you’d expect, early morning or late arvo are the best times for seeing the most wildlife.
The walk takes us about 50 minutes at a fairly slow pace – 30 minutes up, and 20 minutes down (I’m quite slow going down on the steeper bits, with fears of going a over t!).
Date: Sunday, 29 September
Worthwhile factor? Highly worthwhile
- Taste and Test at Sage Dining Rooms (inthetaratory.wordpress.com)