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Queensland, Australia
Two Life Motto's: 1. It's All About The Journey 2. De Camino A La Verada - Do Not Stray From The Path.

Bush Camping ...

Bush Camping ...

I've created this blog mainly to let family and friends know where we have been "Bush Camping" of late as well as a permanent record for us. Sort of an online Scrapbook I guess.

We live in the South East Queensland region of Australia, so I am trying to camp in places that are, at most, 3 hours from Brisbane. Places you can visit on a quick weekend trip, over a long weekend period, or take a week or fortnight to explore. On occassion, we may venture much further afield (here's hoping) and show some other destinations we've managed to locate.

I've tried, where possible, to add links to important things. Such as websites for the places, towns, national parks, state forests, or places of interest. Please click those to take you away from my site, to theirs ... but don't forget to come back! I've added these so that you may get up to date information about these places.

If there is something that I haven't covered or that you can't locate information on ... Contact Me has been set up for you to send me an email. It's for comments or questions you may have about anything to do with the blog itself, my photo's, our camper trailer, or the destinations. Please don't hesitate to provide information on other places we can go, as we are always happy to visit another location.

You can also learn more about me and our camper trailer by visiting the Other Pages links.

Please Enjoy.
Tracey =^..^=

26.02.11 Heifer Creek

This week we headed to Heifer Creek which is a rest area and 48 hour roadside stop, 39k's from Gatton and about 27k's down the Clifton - Gatton Road.  We noted that after all the flooding in the area, it's really hard to tell where it occurred ... if at all ... but the place is wonderfully green.  I'm sure the locals are still living with thoughts of it ... but have picked up the pieces and are putting things back together with surprising resiliance.  I made some calls to Main Roads before leaving to ensure we could make it to the site and that the site was still in good condition.  The Engineer for this road gave it the Thumbs Up but did warn us that the onsite toilet hadn't been tended to in a while (I'm sure they meant the compost pit cleaning and not the physical toilet itself).

This roadside stop has a memorial to the Thiess Brothers and their families who's feat of road building  called The Heifer Creek Cutting, which you will have passed through 7k's before you get to Heifer Creek.
Apparently, the boys completed this solid sandstone cutting using a D8, a D4 and 2 air operated jack hammers in 6 months and, I'd reckon, some patience, tenacity and alot of sweat!  It's something you just can't miss ... even before you read the sign.  It was their first major roadworks job.

After we wandered around the site to get familiar with it, we set up camp under the shade of one of the two largest Jacaranda trees I've seen for some time.  The site had even been slashed recently which was a nice touch.  You could tell that the creek had been up at some stage, but the timber was so dry, we don't think that it had too much to do with the recent flooding, however I'd not be too surprised if this was the case - debree is high on the surrounding trees, so some firewood is easily obtained (while we were there in any case).
If you are looking for a very shady site, then these two Jackies are excellent, but not all of the site has such wonderful shade.  Two cement picnic tables and bins are provided for day visitors as well as the drop toilet.

Heifer Creek is flowing and wonderfully cool, especially on these hot days we've been having of late.  There are a few places where you could sit comfortably and get wet, and a large swimming hole (see below) with some very deep spots ... just be careful of the rocks in the center of it as they are quite large, but are a good spot to catch your breath.
There are eel tailed catfish and fresh water prawns in the creek, along with the odd turtle.  We headed under the road bridge for a bit of a look and you could easily swim there as well. 

Did I mention that the only sounds we can hear are birds chirping and the occassional passing car.  Maybe every third one pulls in to use the loo and leaves.  Occassionally they stop for a good rest and investigate the creek, but leave within the hour.

After lunch, we headed up another inlet to the creek which wasn't flowing, just to see what was to see.  Large boulders and small pockets of water with tadpoles was about all really.  But those puddles are getting fresh water going into them from further upstream, and in one the tadpoles were absolutely huge!  I've never seen any larger. 
So we wander up the creek and down the creek.  Looking at strange rock formations, exposed roots everywhere, debree, and we start collecting some wood for the Oz Pig dinner ... roast potatoes, T-Bones with Outback Seasoning, fried onions, and quartered carrots.  Yummo!  We are joined in our camping endeavours by 2 other parties.  3 blokes to the left with a subaru and tent who are far enough away that we can't hear them, and 2 blokes with a fat cattle dog, in a Winnebago type vehicle who have pulled up closer to the creek on the right ... they make no noise at all and hardly come out of the vehicle ... so must have a tele and microwave I'd say!

As the sun goes down, we can hear the resident frogs start up.  Rather loud ones too.  Might just be the peace and quiet of the setting though.  The cars lesson on the road and now it's just the occassional one or truck.  After dinner, Glenn does the usual night life inspection of the creek and upon return to camp, we notice a set of glowing reflectors that just shouldn't be under the car.  It seems that there is a black pussy cat prowling around our camp in search of the T-Bone bones we've left after dinner.  I decide that to spare it some "where are those bones" fun (and us an annoying mid-night visit) to put hem up on the closest picnic table.  This gives us something to keep an eye on before we go to bed.  And the bones disappear with rapid succession.  I'd say the cat has been abandoned or swept away in the torrent of the recent flooding, but it wouldn't be approached by us, but was by no means scared like a feral cat (yes I know what that's like having taken in 2 feral babies myself in recent years).  If you know anyone that has lost a long haired, black cat from further upstream ... I might know where it is.

We sleep rather peacefully through the night ... something you just can't do in suburbia on a weekend.
 
The view from our site looking west towards the road.
 Some residents ... Tawny Frog Mouth Owls.
Next morning see's both other camping parties packed and gone by 9am, leaving us on our own for a few hours to enjoy the bird life and it's chatter, the creek and our leisurely mid-morning breakfast.  We wander the creek again, check out the signage near the loo block again and it's about 11am before the first picnic-ers appear ... a family with 4 kids who will enjoy the creek until long after we've gone.
After lunch, there are more people enjoying the creek and picnic area which is good to see.  We decide to pack things up before the sun hits our camper roof (we estimate this to happen about 2pm) and start the trip home.  As before we notice many landslides along the way, but I get some better photo's this time.  The rocks coming down these slides are scary large.  A few had even come down the other side of Heifer Creek and we were astonished at the size of them.  As you can see from this photo, this land is usually completely covered in glossy green, but now has these 'scars' from the flooding.  What amount of rainfall does this?  Inland Tsunami type rainfall!
I snap some other photos as we pass through the rich pastures that make up Brisbane's "Garden" district of Gatton and Plainlands.



Trip Kilometres:  260
Trip Duration: 48 hours

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