Mount Chance to Woolbales
5th June 2018
The Hike - After a pretty cool sunset on top of Mount Chance I enjoyed a restful sleep that night apart from the moment a branch crashed down on top of the shelter (who thought burning extensively around the shelter with tall trees would be a safe practice?). I woke up at first light and scrambled out of my tent inner because all around was an amazing pre-dawn light show that I didn't want to miss. Impressed with the colours from within the cover of the shelter area I scrambled up the side of the granite hill leading up to the summit of Mount Chance to get the full 360 degree experience. This was by far and away the best sunrise of the whole trip with fairy floss skies all around flashing a range of colours from pink to yellow to blue, all in vivid contrast to each other.
If the sunset turned out to be a bit muted because of the haze from more burnoffs then the sunrise more than made up for it. With a fairly warm morning for this time of year I was able to perch myself up on the summit and stay there for the entire show. Looking out towards where I'd come from the previous day and then on towards my planned route for the day, I was loving being high up and imagining the track winding through the Pingerup Plains. Despite purchasing a new memory card before the trip that would allow me over 4000 shots during the trip I was at danger of exceeding that so had to show some restraint. I couldn't stop taking photos as the colours changed and the sun began to peak out over the horizon. The lone peak to the east was Mount Frankland and I was hoping to get the sun rising over the small prominence in the distance but it wasn't to be. Eventually the first rays of light broke out over the landscape and it was a worthy finale to what had been a very enjoyable morning. Usually the sky dims down as the sun appears over the horizon and today was no different as the fairy floss skies turned to a deep yellow and orange, dulling out to reveal the blue skies that would dominate the first half of the day.
With a good 23km of track to get through and all my possessions still waiting to be packed up I headed back down the granite to begin my morning ritual of breakfast, slowly packing everything away and enjoying my last moments in the campsite. As I descended the intense glow coming from behind the burnt out trees around the campsite put the unnecessary burns into focus and made me a little bit sad that I didn't get this campsite anywhere near its best (I've been told the BTF gave the local DBCA office a bit of grief over the burn). I had good intentions to pack up quickly and get out on the much hyped Pingerup Plains section but my usual relaxed attitude to getting everything together got in the way. Brewing up an excellent coffee on my GSI Outdoors Java Drip, I found a spot to munch away at my dry granola and enjoy the sound of Donovan and Ben wax lyrical on the Real Trail Talk episode of this section about how good this next day to Woolbales was. Eventually I got my shiz together and was ready to tackle the adventure ahead (not before some parting shots of the campsite looking back at Mount Chance).