There’s something nice about walking in a circle. It’s neat. You start at one point, walk, and end up right back where you started. There’s no pesky dealing with public transport to get back to where you left your car, no having to turn at the half way point and re-trace your steps and no missing what could potentially be further up the road, just beyond the bend.
The Bay Run, around Iron Cove, is one such loopy track.
Despite the name you don’t have to run it. Don’t look at me like that- I got asked the question…
According to the blurb it’s 7kms, although Map My Run logged it as just over 9- perhaps I deviated from the path? Anyways, at 7kms you can power walk it in a little over an hour, or take your time as I did.
Being an enclosed loop, there’s really no best place to start- it really depends on where you’re coming from. Nor is it better to go clockwise or anticlockwise- after all you’re going to see it all anyway!
So, what will you see?
Water. Obviously. The path follows the natural curve of the bay and is never more than about 20m from the water.
Mangroves. These can be a tad whiify on a hot day if the tide is low…but just a tad.
Real Estate. Sydney is mad for real estate, and along Henley Marine Drive there’s a combination of multi million dollar contemporary grand designs and monstrosities, and more modest, older homes with multi million dollar views. The view here goes all the way to the city.
Rodd Park and Rodd Island. There’s a bit of history about this spot- and some shelters to cool off and watch the kids run around. It’s just a little elevated, so it’s also a great place to check out the city skyline from. As for the history? Apparently it was used in the 19th century by scientists sent by Louis Pasteur to find a way of dealing with the rabbit problem. Hmmm. And the whopping great sandstone cross? This was originally the Rodd family (who contributed to the region) mausoleum- although the bodies were moved to Rookwood in the early years on the 1900s.
Rozelle Hospital. Rozelle Hospital was previously called Callan Park Hospital for the Insane. Yes, that was really its name. Thankfully it ended up just being known as Rozelle Hospital. Anyways, all hospital services and patients were transferred to Concord in 2008. Now it’s used only for health and education services, with NSW Writers Centre having residence here. If you’re interested, the old buildings are worth a look.
Parks. There are at least 10- a few with exercise stations, one with fixed exercise equipment.
Signs. Along the way you’ll find little signs detailing the original owners of the land, the white history of the area and the usual bits and pieces about flora and fauna (ie plants and animals).
How hard is it?
I take this question to mean: are there heaps of hills? The answer is no. The track is mostly flat, with the only decent-ish rises being a short climb near Rozelle Hospital and another onto Iron Cove Bridge.
Allow 2 hours.
What about the paths?
The whole track is well maintained, and in many places separate lines for bikes and walkers are marked. Even on the shared bike/walk paths, there’s enough room for prams to walk two abreast- although, ladies, if you’re reading this, please don’t spread out across the whole path!
Yep, but leashed only, of course.
Yep. There’s some at Leichhardt Park and also some at Brett Park and on Rodd Point.
You have a few options- depending on where you start from. Let’s just say, there’s coffee (or refreshments) available every couple of kms- at least.
A hat and sunscreen.
How to get there?
I came from North Western Sydney, so drove and parked under the Iron Cove Bridge at Brett Park- on the Drummoyne side, near the pool. Take the Birkenhead Point exit and follow it around to Henley Marine Drive.
If you’re coming from the City, getting to Birkenhead Point is easy- by bus or ferry. Duck across to www.131500.com.au to plan your trip.