Elegance in lighthousery at Sugarloaf Point

Posted on by John Shingleton

At the end of my most recent Porsche outing with friend Craig two weeks ago, I drove from Buladelah along the picturesque Lakes Way to stay overnight with another friend who lives in the wonderfully named Blueys Beach. This is a very small and relatively isolated settlement on the New South Wales coast. 

Blueys, as it is widely known, is a magical place: A surfing hot spot surrounded by the national parks and blessed with stunning beaches. It is one of my favourite places. As it was winter, the road and Blueys itself were very quiet. It was heaven to drive the winding and challenging Lakes Way in the Porsche without a single sighting of an SUV, a caravan or worst of all an RV. [Ed: I hope you are not referring disparagingly to the Porsche Macan in your disdain for SUVs]

A few photos I have taken in Blueys and surrounding areas have appeared on Macfilos over the years and here are two more from the latest visit. First, the very elegant Sugarloaf Point Lighthouse near Seal Rocks, south of Blueys Beach. And, second, the stunning view down the beach to the south of Seal Rocks, looking towards Treachery Point.

There are quite a few elegant lighthouses along the coast of Australia and the one at Sugarloaf Point guarding the treacherous Seal Rocks has to be the most elegant, sitting as it does in one of the most picturesque settings. 

I will let Wikipedia take up the narrative: 

"The first recorded recommendation for building a lighthouse to guard Seal Rocks was made by a committee of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly in 1863. Original intentions were to place the lighthouse on the Rocks, but because of access difficulties the location, finally chosen in 1873, was Sugarloaf Point. The lighthouse was designed by James Barnet, the NSW Colonial Architect of the time. Tenders were called in 1874. Construction required building a 460m-long jetty, which was used to land the 1,800 tonnes of supplies and materials required for the construction. Construction was completed in 1875 and the light was first lit on 1 December 1875.”

Today the lighthouse is fully automated and the former lighthouse keepers’ cottages are tourist accommodation leased out by NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service. I’d love to stay there. The beaches are superb and the fishing and bushwalking are great. There is a car park about a kilometre and a half short of the lighthouse and then it is a walk uphill to the point and the lighthouse. On this visit, the weather was superb despite it being the middle of winter.

I took my X1 along with me and came back these two photos. That continues to be the joy of the X1 for me. I take it out of its travelling sock. I carry it in my hand. No lenses to change. No danger of sand on the sensor. No complex menus to grapple with. I set the aperture and shutter speed to A and bingo two beautifully exposed, very sharp photos. Who said photography was difficult? The hardest part was the very steep stairway uphill to the Lighthouse at the end.