Mount Solitary

Looking back- Ben Pearse 2016

Looking back on Katoomba from Mt Solitary ridge

Situated in the world heritage listed Blue Mountains, Australia lies the majestic Mount Solitary. At 950 metres above sea level Mount Solitary demands attention amongst it’s nearest landscapes rivals such as the iconic three sisters located nearby. The local indigenous people called the mountain Korowal meaning “the strong one”. Mount Solitary is located in the jamison valley and is most easily accessed via the mountain township of Katoomba.

Over the years Mount Solitary has been a sought after destination for many experienced walkers, hikers, runners and overnight campers as they seek the majestic and breathtaking views the mountain offers up as you labour up it’s steep eucalyptus lined ridges. From it’s summit you are offered a stunning view from melville’s lookout near chinaman’s gap that takes in lake burragorang and the wild dog mountains.

In recent times the National Parks & Wildlife Service (NPWS) have installed pit toilets, shelter and rainwater tanks for the increased traffic flow to Ruined Castle ,which you pass along the way enroute to Mount Solitary. Though the rain tanks may supply water year round, yet it’s vital you carry a good supply of water as it may not be available in the dry periods atop Mount Solitary. Overnight campers can stay in chinaman’s gap or nearby areas with suitable tents and sleeping equipment.

Below is a series of pictures taken by Ben Pearse who is a commercial photographer living and working in Katoomba, Blue Mountains, Australia. These images document the popular walking route from the Golden Stairs to atop Mount Solitary. The distance from the beginning of the Golden stairs to the Chinaman’s Gap is approximately 7.7km. (please read additional notes below images on hiking severity)

I hope these images help others enjoy this beautiful section of the Blue Mountains, Australia.

cheers Ben

All images are copyright to Ben Pearse Photography 2016

Website

Golden stairs to Mount Solitary

three sisters view

three sisters view

Golden stairs decent- april 2016- 2048

Golden stair pathway

angophora trees

Angophora trees

Signs to Solitary- april 2016- 2048

Signposts to Mt Solitary at base of Golden Stairs

Entering the forest- april 2016- 2048

Entering the forest

Dappled light- 2048

Dappled forest light

Forest views- april 2016

Forest views

Forest greens- april 2016- 2048

Forest greens

Sunshine in greenery- april 2016

Sunshine and greens

Sun through the trees- april 2016- 2048

Sunshine through the trees

Trees amongst the ferns- april 2016- 2048

Trees amongst the ferns

cliff lined views- april 2016- 2048

Cliff lined views

Track between ferns- 2048

Track through the ferns

Forest in sunlight- april 2016- 2048

Forest in sunlight

Sea of ferns- 2048

Sea of ferns

Under a fern canopy- april 2016- 2048

Under a fern canopy

Lush forests- april 2016- 2048

Lush forests

Bush toilets- april 2016- 2048

Bush toilets

Turnoff to ruined castle- 2048

Turnoff to Ruined Castle

Warning signs to heed- april 2016

Warning signs to take note

Camping site- 2048

Campsites and rest spots

Water and shelter stop- 2048

Water and shelter

Rain tanks and shelter- april 2016- 2048

Rain tanks and shelter

Last pit toilet- april 2048

Last pit toilet stop

Rainwater tanks- april 2016- 2048

Rain tanks can provide water if it’s available

Raintank- april 2016- 2048

One of two rain tanks available

Beautiful angophora trees- 2048

Beautiful angophora trees

The uphill climb begins- april 2016- 2048

The uphill climb begins

Ruined castle views- april 2016- 2048

Ruined Castle views

Angophora forest- april 2016- 2048

Angophora forest

Sunlight over angophora- april 2016- 2048

Sunlight over Angophora tree

Angophora canopy- 2048

Angophora canopy

The track steepens- april 2016- 2048

The path gets steeper

First steep scrample

First steep scramble

Looking to Kings Tablands

Looking to Kings Tablelands

Katoomba cliffline views

Katoomba cliffline views

The chimney climb

The chimney climb

The second knoll climb looms above

The second knoll climb looms above

Looking back across the jamison valley to Katoomba

Looking back across the jamison valley to Katoomba

Looking back panoramic views

Looking back panoramic views

Narrowneck plateau views

Narrowneck plateau views

Summit views...still a way to go.

Summit views…still a way to go

Finding shady spot on the climb

Finding a shady spot on the climb

Summit glory

Summit glory

Chinamans gap- Mount Solitary

Chinaman’s gap- Mount Solitary

Chinaman's gap eucalyptus trees

Chinaman’s gap eucalyptus trees

Chinamans Cave- Mount Solitary

Chinaman’s Cave- Mount Solitary

 

Chinaman's gap in the mist

Chinaman’s gap in the mist

Morning light

Morning light

Melville's lookout- Mount Solitary

Melville’s lookout- Mount Solitary

Zooming in on Lake Burragorang

Zooming in on Lake Burragorang

View over Lake Burragorang

View over Lake Burragorang

Panoramic view from Melville's lookout

Panoramic view from Melville’s lookout

Rain over Lake Burragorang

Rain over Lake Burragorang

Tales around the campfire

Tales around the campfire…

Katoomba panoramic view

Katoomba panoramic view- Mount Solitary on the left. The hike starts from right, underneath narrowneck plateau, and continues left past and below ruined castle and finally up the steep visible ridgeline onto Mount Solitary.

 

Thanks for looking, cheers Ben

Website

Note: The hike to Mount Solitary is not suitable for inexperienced hikers and campers. The long steep ridge path through sections of sandstone boulders can prove exhaustive and dangerous for those whose fitness is not at a suitable level.

Note: The author takes no responsibility for any incorrect information in this blog post. All person/s who are undertaking a walk/hike or camping trip to Mount Solitary should research/contact NPWS and other local government agencies and/or official sites prior to leaving to ensure their own safety. Please stay safe and monitor bushfire warnings when hiking and camping and be sure to take out your rubbish with you so other can enjoy these areas too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A photographic year in review -2014

2014 in review

Wow, that went fast! So as I start gearing up for 2015 I thought i’d reflect on a few moments from 2014 that stood out for me, photographically speaking. One of my highlights was getting to work on a “feature series’ that was filmed here in the Blue Mountains. I was hired to photograph locations throughout the upper Blue Mountains area. Over the course of a month I shot well over 100+ locations. From traditional landscape scenes to shops, offices, buildings etc whatever fitted in with the script and could be possibly used as a filming location within the series. It was a great learning curve and taught me some valuable lessons which I’ll take into my professional photographic journey. A great benefit in 2015 is I will be able to keep and showcase in my portfolio all of the locations to future commercial clients who might be filming or shooting in the blue mountains! Over the course of the years I’ll add to this library as I photograph more and more locations.

Another highlight was shooting a variety of landscape scenes by nightfall,  the majority of these I won’t be showing via social media, but rather through an exhibited series. As more amatueur and hobbyist photographers enter the photographic market from the sidelines it’s important to retain a level of uniqueness in an ever growing marketplace. It’s been great to see so many people wandering the mountains armed with a dslr lately…

Another quick highlight was capturing the Royal visit here in my hometown of Katoomba in april. Though i’m not an avid royal watcher by any means it was still great to see the Blue Mountains get swept up with royal fever. You don’t get a better tourism advert for the area than a young royal visit and after a very poor tourism season prior due to bushfires it was welcomed by local businesses. I should also quickly mention shooting an album cover for the Royce Twins (from X factor) they were a nice bunch of young and talented young men…As usual I will only show a small proportion of the work I’ve covered and here I’ve lent towards my personal favourite moments….

So, enough prattling on for now, I’m very much looking forward to some great photographic endeavours in 2015 and I wish everyone a fantastic and safe 2015.

cheers ben

here is a small selection of photos from 2014

phantom falls

phantom falls

Seas of Fog

Seas of Fog

Are you looking at me Kate?

Are you looking at me Kate?

Charles lookalike

Charles lookalike

wedding tears

wedding tears

sisters in silhouette

three sisters in silhouette

roaring 20's

roaring 20’s

Jamison seas

Jamison seas

Delta

Delta

groom

happy groom

Rainbows and Rain

Rainbows and Rain

Rainbow sisters

Rainbow sisters

wedding fun

wedding fun

getting in too close

getting in too close

poles apart

poles apart

ellenborough falls

ellenborough falls

lost in thought

lost in thought

celebrity guests enjoying the fun

celebrity guests enjoying the fun

Rainy days

Rainy days

shadowlands

shadowlands

portraits

portraits

jamison shower over solitary

jamison shower over solitary

moonrise over falls

moonrise over falls

Katoomba falls

Katoomba falls

falling blue

falling blue

Cascades in B&W

Cascades in B&W

sylvia falls

sylvia falls

Martu mob projection

Martu mob projection on Carrington chimney

lou & michael

lou & michael

romancing the flame

romancing the flame

Rosana & Andrew- wedding Ad with border

Rosana and Andrew…so cold outside

martu mob exhibit

martu mob exhibit

Billy

Billy

blue mountains by night

blue mountains by night

sculptures by the sea

sculptures by the sea

moonrise through the mist

moonrise through the mist

into the night

into the night

Boxing day panoramic on sunset

jamison sunset panoramic

jamison sunset panoramic

prolonged sunset pano

prolonged sunset pano

hazy days

hazy days

rays panormaic

rays panoramic

storm brewing, massive panoramic stitch

storm brewing, massive panoramic stitch

november fires

november fires

New life

New life

Carrington gardens

Carrington gardens

album cover

album cover

mist walker

mist walker

sunset watchers

sunset watchers

Rob & Rebecca

Rob & Rebecca

happily married

happily married

laughing Kookaburra

laughing Kookaburra

end of the road

end of the road

Cockatoo abstract

Cockatoo abstract

silhouetted sisters on sunrise

silhouetted sisters on sunrise

boxing day panormaic

boxing day panoramic

megalong moods

megalong moods

fern monsters lair

fern monsters lair

megalong rays

megalong rays

moody blue

moody blue

self portrait

self portrait

happy halloween

happy halloween

birthday boy

birthday boy

looking out

looking out

urban octopus

urban octopus

life is still

life is still

urban filming

urban filming

Caves house- jenolan caves

Caves house- jenolan caves

dogface panoramic

dogface panoramic

bridal veil falls on sunrise

bridal veil falls on sunrise

Weeping rock vertical panoramic

Weeping rock vertical panoramic

winter magic 2014

winter magic 2014

winter magic fireworks

winter magic fireworks

mountains architecture

mountains architecture

Dressed in water panoramic

Dressed in water panoramic

evening glow

evening glow

Into the mist

Into the mist

waverley cemetery

waverley cemetery

iconic opera house

iconic opera house

moon landing

moon landing

outdoor clothing shoot

outdoor clothing shoot

minni ha ha falls

minni ha ha falls

north face event

north face event

august moons

august moons

vivid sydney

vivid sydney

vivid characters

vivid characters

last man stands

last man stands

out of shadows

out of shadows

three sisters by night

three sisters by night

old man magpie

old man magpie

yesfest

yesfest

Australia day

Australia day

under the falls

under the falls

first light

first light

north face 100

north face 100

media dash

media dash

sisters on sunset

sisters on sunset

Life be still

Life be still

three sisters on sunset

three sisters on sunset

autumn colours

autumn colours

autumn mists

autumn mists

urban super moon

urban super moon

pine needle gathering

pine needle gathering

trees abstract

trees abstract

autumn delight

autumn delight

sounds of autumn

sounds of autumn

simple things

simple things

Katoomba falls in heavy rain

Katoomba falls in heavy rain

side view of cascades

side view of cascades

full flow

full flow

still weeping

still weeping

natures garden

natures garden

winters drought

winters drought

evening glow

evening glow

a mood sets in

a mood sets in

amongst the dead

amongst the dead

Vic the model

Vic the model

amongst the daises

amongst the daises

Dogface

Dogface and fog

still waters

still waters

grose valley in B&W

grose valley in B&W

phantom view

phantom view

dark side of the moon

dark side of the moon

reptile display

reptile display

check!

check!

comic day

comic day

library fun

library fun

little wagana dancers

little wagana dancers

drumcorp

drumcorp

north face by night

north face by night

runner in north face

runner in north face

vivid crowds

vivid crowds

sea of weed

sea of weed

open for viewing

open for viewing

roaring 40's

roaring 20’s

cute...

cute…

lovely ladies

lovely ladies

roaring

roaring

groom and the lads

groom and the lads

rain on the horizon panoramic

rain on the horizon panoramic

katoomba cliffline panoramic

katoomba cliffline panoramic

urban decay

urban decay

katoomba falls panormaic

katoomba falls panoramic

ellenborough falls panoramic

ellenborough falls panoramic

three sisters by moonlight

three sisters by moonlight

patches of rain panoramic

patches of rain panoramic

laughing Kookabura

laughing Kookabura

And what better way to end than with another damn cat on the internet, lol

And what better way to end than with another bloody cat on the internet, lol

 

 

 

I hope you enjoyed these images

Happy 2015

Ben

email ben-benpearsephotography@gmail.com

Mount Solitary- Blue Mountains

Mount Solitary in cloud

Mount Solitary in cloud

Mount Solitary is a dominant sandstone formation that rises 950 metres from within the jamison valley in the world heritage listed, Blue Mountains, Australia. Surrounded by a sea of  Australian native eucalyptus trees the local indigenous people called the mountain Korowal, meaning ‘the strong one’. You can take a hike to the top of the summit, though you might want to take your best set of legs for this one as it’s pretty arduous….hard, steep, bit of a slog….you get the idea. Though if you do manage to get up there the views are well worth the sweat.

One of the best spots to view Mount Solitary from is the viewing platforms at Echo Point. From here you are literally right in front of this majestic sandstone formation rising steeply from within the valley. In the late afternoon you can watch the sandstone turn a beautiful orange/ red as the last sunrays fade across the valley. On the mornings when the fog is still in the valley, Mount Solitary is one of the few distinct landmarks to be seen rising out of the white sea of fog. So if you are in the area go and have a look at this wonderful natural landmark, it won’t disappoint.

see you out there

cheers ben                                                                                                                                                                                           more solitary views

solitary glowing

solitary glowing

commanding a view

commanding a view

morning light

morning light

off in the distance

off in the distance

surrounded by smoke

surrounded by smoke

last light for the night

last light for the night

catching some rays

catching some rays

during the day

during the day

after the sun goes down

after the sun goes down

helping guide the fog through

helping guide the fog through

the steep climb up

the steep climb up

solitary confinement in bushfire smoke

solitary confinement in bushfire smoke

basking in dramatic light & low clouds

basking in dramatic light & low clouds