Sketch Getaway : Bilpin in Blue Mts

BILPIN SPRINGS LODGE, BLUE MOUNTAINS. March 25,26,27. 2012

From the verandah, Bilpin Springs Lodge

From the verandah, Bilpin Springs Lodge mid morning.

Sunrise Mist

Sunrise Mist

Sunrise mist over the garden

Sunrise mist over the garden

Early on the verandah

Early on the verandah

Coola waits with his dog lead

Coola waits with his dog lead

Morning sketching at Bilpin Springs Lodge

Morning sketching at Bilpin Springs Lodge

Sketching day at Mt Tomah Gardens

Sketching day at Mt Tomah Gardens

Jan's Lily botanical sketch

Jan’s Lily botanical sketch

A little something to make the pen go faster

A little something to make the pen go faster

Lydia and her sketch

Lydia and her sketch

End of the day sketch

End of the day sketch

We felt as if we had our own country lodge. Bilpin Springs was our home for the 3day/2night Sketch Trip.

Everyone met at Kurrajong about 10am on the Sunday morning. Yes everyone was there. Morning tea was a must and a first sketch got everyone going.

A little window shopping is hard to avoid in the village of one street, so it was decided to meet again for lunch at Sassafras Creek. Our outside table was perfect and much approval of the fine food followed.

Arriving at Bilpin Springs Lodge late afternoon was lovely timing. Everyone found their room and took time to settle in and explore the glorious location, meet the animals and chooks before a pre-dinner drink. Sketching happened at all sorts of moments. You’d find people in quiet spots taking in the peace and quiet with pen in hand.

Dinner was an ‘everybody pitch in’ affair, and while Milton bbq’d the ribs, salads and other dishes came together in the huge kitchen, with a little wine in hand and plenty of room for everyone to help. Somehow some delicious offerings came out after dinner which no one held back on.

That evening with the fire lit and big sofas and chairs to flop in we chatted, read books and enjoyed the company of fellow sketchers.

Next morning started after breakfast with a tai chi session with Jo. Out there with the bellbird chorus and Kookaburra calls we were very much at one with nature. Coola the family dog added to the chorus with his woofs of approval. A lot of laughs.

Mt Tomah gardens are a short drive away, so first it was a coffee hit then into the formal gardens to sketch. Milton set up a picnic lunch at some nearby tables under the trees, and we ate our bread, cheeses, olives and pate being watched by beady eyed crows and a bush turkey.

Back home several sketches took place before we headed to the Apple Bar for a great dinner, and then home later to the spa pool. I think everyone was in at one stage, all chatting and laughing into the night. Extremely relaxed and a great nights sleep.

It was at 6am next morning when I opened the blinds a scap, to reveal the most glorious morning mist. Everything was frosted pink and gold, so in my nighty I grabbed the iphone and took some pics. Hello world!  I didn’t realise till later how amazing they were. Mike and Cath at Bilpin Springs Lodge have seen the first one, and are thrilled to see the alpaca and his best friend the shetland pony grazing in their paddock.

We thought it was stunning, but the animals probably see this every morning so don’t give a toss.

A stop off, once packed to go, was ‘Pie in the Sky’ a roadhouse cafe half way back to Kurrajong. The apple pies were just coming out of the oven so it was mandatory to share some with our excellent caffeine hit. Fresh apples picked from nearby trees were a treat to take back home, along with a few other pies for dinner.

Last sketch was to be St Stephen’s church, up on the rise just through Kurrajong. Shaun the minister thought he’d  missed a meeting when 4 cars rocked up on a quiet Tuesday morning, and 9 people spilled out  ready to sketch the belltower and historic grave stones. He very kindly gave the nod when we asked if he’d mind. A little wine with our picnic certainly had the pens working fast. Thank you Shaun.

This is a sketch done on a previous visit. I knew the others would love this location, like everything about our few days away.

St Stephen's Bell Tower

St Stephen’s Bell Tower

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