Monday, 18 March 2013

Sunday out and about

External forces, in the form of family and friends, drove me out of my little hermit hole on Sunday and out into the big wide world.

The primary force acting on me was Emily's Birthday. The plan was for the four of us (with Mum and Dad) to head down to Mt Tamborine and do some walking. So at around 8ish, we rolled out of town and up into the hills.
The ford at Cedar Creek Falls

Our first port of call was at Cedar Creek Falls. The road was signposted as closed, and although some other cars seemed to be ignoring the signs, we parked at the top of the hill and walked down to the crossing. There was probably about 6 inches of water across the road, so we doffed shoes and waded across. The water was cool, clear and very pleasant - it was almost a shame to put our boots back on. We wandered down the short track to the titular Cedar Creek Falls, which was a very little waterfall with a rockpool at the bottom flanked by sheer rocky cliffs. There were some swimmers being a bit silly clambering on rocks, but I was feeling very zen, and was happy to leave them to their own follies. The creek itself was in very fine form, flowing quickly and happily through the dry rainforest.
Cedar Creek Falls

After another pleasant wade back through the ford, we reclimbed the hill and drove on into North Tamborine for some coffee and cakes. It was nice to find decent coffee and good cake on our first attempt, and with a nice view out from the ridge.

After our break, we drove on up to the well-named Knoll section, and took another quick walk out to Cameron Falls, descending through sections of rainforest and palms. Cameron Falls was quite a lot bigger, and offered a great view out north across the plain to the Brisbane city Skyline.

Looking upstream from the top of Cameron Falls
Cameron Falls
Looking north from Cameron Falls towards Brisbane

We then walked back up the hill to the Knoll, with an accompanying conversation about the distinction between lichen and fungi. Seeking lunch options, we did a bit of a reconnoitre along the ridge, driving out as far as the Mount Tamborine Golf Club, which offered great views out east across the Gold Coast (views of the Gold Coast have the added pleasure of reassuring you that you're not on the Gold Coast). We finally settled on a pie from the baker back at North Tamborine, judging people based on the cars they were driving past (the Corvette driver came in for the harshest speculation, and the flatback Morris the highest praise).

After lunch, we went seeking one more quick walk, and after being foiled by the closed MacDonald track, we took a brief walk downhill to Curtis Falls, the smallest of the falls we'd seen, but with a pleasant-looking waterhole at the bottom and, like the others, in fine form with plenty of water flowing.
Curtis Falls
I have a sneaking suspicion I've been to Mt Tamborine at some point before, although I can't recall why, when, or with whom. Based on what I've heard, and reinforced by what we saw at times, its a very popular weekend getaway from either Brisbane or the Gold Coast. Still, the tracks we walked, while well-frequented, were not unpleasantly crowded, and seemed to be bearing up well to the traffic (notwithstanding a number of others being closed, whether because of traffic, floods, or regular maintenance). The tracks are short, and probably not sufficient if you're looking for some serious bushwalking, but as a half-day out, its pretty nice, and as it turned out yesterday, 6 or 7 degrees cooler than the valley below.

However, my day wasn't quite done at this point. After a brief drive back to Brisbane, we flicked on my air-conditioning and had a cup of tea, then I wandered over to Bardon, in response to a suggestion from Miri of fish and chips in the park. Being an uncharacteristically hot day, the plan had evolved somewhat to slip-n-slide in the Brown's backyard, but it was still very pleasant to see the Brown and Thomson girls playing, and to meet the newest tiny addition to the Brown clan. We stuck to the fish'n'chips plan, and I got a big hug from Ess before I headed home.

Perhaps its because I have some shut-in tendencies on other weekends, but I really enjoy the occasional weekend out, and I was very grateful for the provocations on this occasion.

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