Hangman’s Rock…

Devine's Hill

On the rural outskirts of suburban Sydney, a little more than an hour’s drive from Sydney’s CBD, stands the small village of Wiseman’s Ferry.

Wiseman’s has a history steeped in early European settlement in New South Wales and at the heart of this historic village is the Wiseman’s Ferry Pub – a haunt that is popular with the weekend motorcycle crowd and families alike.

And I use the word haunt literally, as it is rumoured the upstairs guest rooms are haunted.

The pub is now owned by former Wallaby Bill Young and if you are visiting on a weekend be sure to take a look upstairs as it has a small museum and the accommodation rooms do look inviting, even if you might be sharing with a ghost from the past…

And if you ever stay there, let me know how you get on!

The village stands alongside the Hawkesbury River, which travels further upstream towards Windsor and downstream to an opening at the sea near Barenjoey. A car ferry transports you to the other side where you can travel towards either Spencer or the small Hamlet of St Alban’s, either of which are a very pleasant drive.

We are frequent visitor’s to the area and have spent many hours wiling away time in the park next to the river.

On a recent visit we took the ferry to the other side and walked up Devine’s Hill to a place called “Hangman’s Rock”.

It sounds ominous and folklore suggests that in the early days of settlement and at the time the Great North Road was being built, that convicts were hanged at this rock. But history does not point to this ever occurring.

But it isn’t hard to see why the folklore surrounding the rock evolved…

Devine's Hill

What makes the walk worthwhile, apart from being Out and About in the Australian bush, is the opportunity to view the magnificent work done by convicts on the road that was built northwards towards the Hunter Valley. In fact, it is along this walk that you can best observe the Great North Road as this part is now closed to vehicle traffic and has been preserved.

So if a bit of a hike up a small mountain, some history and a magnificent steak washed down with a cold beer is your thing, then head out to Wiseman’s Ferry for a day – I guarantee your first visit won’t be your last

Photo’s: Baz – The Landy & Janet-Planet

7 thoughts on “Hangman’s Rock…

  1. Lavinia Ross April 7, 2017 / 3:15 am

    An interesting formation, that hole. Is that limestone? Looks like what is left of an old sinkhole that had water running down through it at one time.

    The pub sounds like a good way to finish the trip!


    • Baz - The Landy April 7, 2017 / 9:53 am

      Hi Lavinia, all sandstone through that region. In fact, Sydney is full of sandstone. It is quite spectacular…

      And the Great North Road is truly a work of art. Okay, when you look at it you simply see a road, but there is a lot of water that runs through here and they had to account for that in the building. Almost 200 years later and it still stands the test… Cheers, Baz

      Liked by 1 person

  2. George & Shelly .... Off The Track April 5, 2017 / 10:29 pm

    It’s a lovely area, although we don’t get down there too often. Have never seen or heard of Hangmans Rock though so may need to take a drive out one weekend and check it out.


    • Baz - The Landy April 6, 2017 / 7:29 am

      You’ll enjoy it…not to far up the road from that spot is a cemetery that has First Fleeter’s buried in it. This is a favourite area of ours and we frequent often…Give us a shout if you are heading out, perhaps we could catch up! Cheers, Baz

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Linda Visman - wangiwriter April 5, 2017 / 9:42 pm

    I love the country around Wiseman’s Ferry. The hotel there was once owned by the ancestor of Kate Grenville the writer, whose book, “The Secret River” is based on her ancestor’s arrival in the area back in the early 1800s.


    • Baz - The Landy April 6, 2017 / 7:27 am

      Hi Linda, I wasn’t aware of that. When I first kayaked the Hawkesbury rom Windsor to Brooklyn it was around the time Kate wrote “The Secret River” and I read it adding so much to my trip down the river…Cheers, Baz

      Liked by 1 person

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