We aren’t in a hurry to leave today and make sure we pack everything securely which means we head out about 0900. We head south to Beaudesert, then onto Rathdowney which certainly has its fair share of places to stay close by. Once through Rathdowney
, we take a right and head back towards Boonah.
Quite a few vehicles are driving up to the lookout on the Upper Portals and many more are stopping due to the 4WD Only sign just over the next creek crossing. Just as happened last time, lots of people stop to check the status of the waterfall before heading off again. Glad the wind is blowing the dust from the road over to the other camps. This camping reserve has 2 camps on either side of the dirt road ... 2 beside the creek and 2 against the bottom of Mount May. All sites have a very large BBQ ring made from concrete, but that’s the extent of the facilities. If you do come out this way, you’ll need a toilet and shower as well as bringing your own water. I personally wouldn’t use the creek water as far too many people swim in the pool below the waterfall which is above the camping reserve. You can bring the dog, but it must be on a lead at all times. Please be aware of the requirement to take your rubbish with you … as some campers seem to think the council will remove it which is not the case. We were disappointed to find such slack campers had been here before us. Disgraceful in this day and age.
We get out the OzPig and I start chopping vegies and marinating the meat for our stir fry dinner. As the wind keeps changing direction, it’s a mission to decide on where it should be placed. Our Aussie Swag already smells like a campfire, but Glenn is trying to alleviate smoke going straight to it. Certainly don’t want to damage Rover at all.
Dinner is Chinese inspired beef with stir fried vegies and some 2 minute noodles thrown in the mix. Camp Ovens are fantastic for keeping things warm whilst you wait for other things to cook. Very nice if we could keep it warm once it hits the bowls.
I’m sure this is Summer but at 1900 it’s only 22◦C but the wind makes it feel much colder, so we wait for water to boil for our showers so that we can put on warm clothes. Early to bed I think. Did I mention that the wind is coming from a different direction every few minutes? Whilst we wait, I think I hear some thunder so now we are hoping we don’t have the wind and some rain. Glenn thinks some torrential rain would be nice though that wind has to go. We are heating the water on our Aussie Swag’s stove as the wind is making things difficult on the OzPig … we don’t want to start a bushfire … so we have extra pots huddled around the kettle and I’m watching the flame stays alight. All the puppies are tuckered out from an exciting day of sniffing grass and other wonderful smells and quickly quieten down for the night.
More campers arrive through the night.
We are awoken early by the sounds of children enjoying themselves. I’m not sure why they must be so loud so early, but loud they are. At least the wind has died down overnight I guess.
As we start on breakfast, we notice that our 4 camps have increased to 7. So we’ve deemed them 2B and 3B even though 3B is using some of the day use area, and the last camp is down on the creek overflow near the crossing. If we have any rain, they might get worried, but none so far.
The solar panel goes out at 0745, so we’ll see what we can get from it today. I’ll also mention that today is also overcast.
Puppies fed and watered, coffee’s drunk, dishes done, so now there is nothing to do but laze the day away. We’ll have to do something constructive so that our backsides don’t develop sores from sitting too much. Glenn starts the day by reclining on his camp chair with eyes closed. He’s a professional at it and I can tell that he’s getting much better at the whole relaxing thing. He says he’s listening to all the different birds. So I start to name them much to his annoyance. Noisy Minors, Magpies, Coucal Pheasant, Kookaburra’s, King Parrots, Crows, Rainbow Lorikeets, Whip Birds, Bell Minor … and those are the ones I can identify by sound.
0900 news has no weather report to speak of. Neither has the 1000 news. Excellent job FM104 (please note sarcasm).
We wander the puppies up the waterfall to see if it’s falling. Yes it is, but with such reluctance this time. The swimming hole is full though and the water is cool, but not cold … well as far in as my knees that is. Telashi my young pup thinks it’s a great opportunity to get wet. She just loves that water so much. I let her off the lead so that she can enjoy it without drowning as there is no-one else in the area.
Lots of green ants here and the pups all get bitten, as do I. They are wandering back and forth cleaning up whatever has fallen onto the camp floor (grass and dirt) and doing a wonderful job of it. Poor pups … I can’t do anything about the stinging they are getting on occasion as it’s hard to say if it’s their feet or their mouths coping the sting.
I watch the King Parrots come back toward the creek. Yesterday it was one boy and one girl, but today the girl numbers are increasing. It’s wonderful to hear their calls and to watch them flutter about. Wonder if some of the girls are actually babies.
Surprisingly, 2 hours later, we come back out to enjoy what’s left of the afternoon and prepare for the last evening of 2011. I wonder what our fellow campers will do as the night wears down? Will there be partying till the wee hours? Fireworks? Cries of Happy New Year before all goes suddenly quiet?
We heat up the OzPig again for some dinner. Some lovely Snapper fillets for dinner tonight. I’m wrapping it in alfoil with some garlic, ginger, onion powder and Sweet Thai seasoning. This will be served with mashed potato, cauliflower, beans and carrots. Even going to have dessert, Lemonade Scone … yes just one cut into slices once cooked, spread with butter (for Glenn) and honey (for me). Fabulous camp cooking! Glenn enjoys his dinner and is happy with dessert as well. I’ve been trying to cook one of these extremely fluffy scones for ages now, but he keeps telling me maybe next time.
We walk the puppies down to the first crossing (as you drive in) for an airing and on the way back, I find some friendly horses to pat. Love the smell of horses. It’s earthy. We do a night time creek walk and find lots of very small redclaw in the water. They are easy to catch by hand so the claws don’t get you, but be careful as they may bite you with their actual mouth … trust me I know … and it still hurts.
Flying Spider # 1
Flying Spider # 2
Happy New Year … bit late I know. All other campsites are up at the crack of dawn and doing things noisily. Don’t know how when they went to bed a lot later than we did. Guess some people don’t need as much sleep. I reckon it was the car revving that woke me and it’s still running even after I’ve made coffee. Maybe it was birds that have been cackling and chirruping since day break that got me out of bed? Or those noisy kids?
Today is a complete contrast from the few days before. Sun everywhere and blue sky filled with white fluffy clouds and it’s warm. Panel is out once more and I think we’ll have the best input today even though it won’t be out there for long.
After breakfast, we head back to the creek to let the puppies play in the water. Telashi made me laugh when she sticks her head in the water and blows bubbles out her nose. Never seen a dog do that before. My last Cattle dog did put his head completely into the water, but held his breath whilst doing so.
Whilst at the creek our closest neighbours have packed up camp and are leaving. So we start our very slow packing ritual, between visiting the creek and relaxing and by about 1300 we are ready to pack the camper up and depart.
The day is still perfect, except for the leaving bit, but we take our time heading home the way we came. Once home and unpacked, there is still time to do some chores around the house.
I reckon we will have to rethink the ‘80% chance of rain’ we used to have going camping to general ‘80% chance of shitty weather’. I guess at least we were out there and enjoying what we have … gotta be the whole reason to do it.
Trip Kilometers: 231
Trip Duration: 72 hours