About Me

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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 =^..^=

23.06.12 Clancy's @ Benarkin SF

On the road by 0815 and have a very good trip up to Benarkin State Forest.  We go via Ipswich, Fernvale, Esk, Toogoolawah, Harlin and Moore.  Luckily for us as well, the climb up the range is now open to two lanes so no waiting at the bottom for us this run.  My mum came to visit last week and she said only one lane was operating when she returned home.   

The day is overcast but clear.  Once up the range, we look out for Settlers Rest Area, which is our turnoff to the state forest.  From here it’s about 15k’s on dirt roads to our camp site for the weekend.  The road is rather rough with sharp rocks, so the 15k’s takes us a little longer than expected.  The last 2 kilometres takes us back down the range to the valley below and although steep is thankfully dry.  I wouldn’t consider doing this portion in the wet weather.  It takes us just over 2 hours to reach our destination, arriving at 1030. 

We stop and have a bit of a look around to decide where we might put up our camper.  Other campers onsite are packing things away, so we choose a spot near where some other tenants are packing up, as they should be gone within the hour.  The site itself as a whole is a bit flatter towards one end, too steep for anything in other parts, but leading down to another section of flatter land closer to the creek.  Where we will be setting up is along the fence line and road to Emu Creek camping area, but since the road is closed, we feel this will be perfect. 
The camper that’s vacating the nearest site to where we've parked, points out a Koala in a nearby tree, which we wouldn’t have spotted otherwise.  It’s not asleep, but watching us with the dogs.  We’ll have to keep an eye on the Koala to keep both it and our dogs safe.  I snap off a few photos and we take in the creek from our vantage point. 

We’ve parked the camper on a good spot, which is a little sloped, but by the time we’ve checked out the entire camp ground for a better spot, the other campers are packed and gone and we think they had the best spot of all, so I instruct Glenn to reverse into it.  They’ve left the fire going and some burnt timber around it, which I remove, before dousing it, as I don’t want the dogs running right through a fire place (imagine the overall trauma and vet bill!) and we’ll be using the OzPig anyway.  It takes about a 10 ltrs to extinguish it to my satisfaction.   Why people think these fires will just go out on there own is anyone's guess.  I guess they don't realise the dangers to animals, children and vehicles and figure it's not their problem once they've left.  I'd so love to show these people the burns ward at a childrens hospital or vet ... whilst native animals don't even get that sort of care.  The second thing with the previous tenants was their old dog was covered in either mange or flea allergy and I didn't want to pat it as it came over to us.  Poor thing.  I felt so sorry for it.

We proceed with our set up around 1100 and are sitting down, relaxing and having our first drink 30 minutes later.   Beds made, shower tent is up, table is set up, kitchens out, lights in place, dogs are leashed and settled on their beds, OzPig is out but not set up yet, timber box is in position, solar panel goes out … like Glenn always says … the pack up would be short if you didn’t have to get so much stuff out in the first place.  But we always take our time setting and packing up … it’s not like we need to be anywhere. 
After some lunch around 1300, we head down to the creek to have a good look.  We want to let the dogs off their leads, so have waited for some people to head back to camp before we go.  There are a few deeper spots where one could submerge during summer, but right now it’s about 14°C, so the only one going in at all is my little water baby, Telashi.  We wander further upstream and she find another spot to have a swim, while we try to keep dry.   There is lots of flotsam here so finding timber for a fire would be rather easy … not sure if you are allowed to do so though. 

Once we’ve investigated the creek enough, we head up to check out the facilities.  There are two flushing toilets for the ladies and 1 flushing, 1 urinal for the boys.  The building seems just a bit too bit for them for, so there must be a storage facility between each end.  We head over the official camp ground sign and are disappointed to see that it shows only a map of the campground with which we are now familiar, and the rules of the site.  No other information about the state forest to be found. 
On our way back, I stop by our only current neighbour to say hello.  We’ve dubbed him Dread-Man as he’s got long dreads.  He seems a little worse for wear and is having some trouble collecting his thoughts as we have a brief chat.  The people who vacated our site gave him the rest of their timber which was very nice of them, and he’s burning his way through it to make coffee and boil some water and he’s been doing his washing as well … it’s strung up all around the campsite.  He’s got a fully functional 4wd with camp fridge and roof top tent so seems he’s going to be here for awhile.  I’m guessing he’s the person who’s paid for a week or more of camping and he’ll be alone for most of it once the weekend crowd go. 
Back at camp, we find the frozen ½ chicken I’ve bought with us for dinner is going to take a miracle to defrost.  It came out of the freezer upon camp construction and still feels as hard now as it did then.  An hour or so in a warm camp over should fix that, but I’ll have to be careful that the centre cooks through properly.  I peel some spuds and they go in the bag with the chicken to get the Mexican flavour all over them as well. 

There is nothing to do but sit back, keep an eye on the Koala (who hasn’t moved a muscle) and relax.  How tough can it be?  We watched a dad and his sons move in near us.  They have a tent and a tarp and a few chairs but that’s basically it.  They head down to the creek and we can hear them using their little hatchet to gather fire wood.   Two other camper trailers come in not long after and head down towards the creek. 

After a little while we get the OzPig going and get dinner on.  It starts raining a little bit … more of a sprinkle … but there go our chances for a fine weekend.  We also set up the AquaCube for our showers this weekend.  We’ve decided that it will be coming with us each winter in the future as it’s a bit better than the bucket and cup affair we are used to.  Perhaps it will get to come with us all the time once we’ve been using it for awhile and it becomes habit.  Dread-Man comes over to inspect it.  He’s keen on getting himself something similar and is curious as to how they operate.  We are happy ours hasn’t seized up since we last used it well over a year ago now.
Night comes quickly in winter and before you know it we are showered and sitting down to dinner.  I’m up for some spotlighting, but Glenn is happy to lay back in his chair and stay out of the rain.  It’s been shower after shower now since nightfall.  Think we’ll get to hear it for most of the night.  As the sounds of campers ease into night time relaxation, we realise we can’t really hear the creek from camp.  It would have been nice to fall asleep to.

Next morning dawns a little dreary.  No showers heavy enough overnight to soak the canvas and it dries quickly due to the brisk wind.   We awake after a sleep in to find some patchy sunlight, which soon leaves the area. 
After a breakfast of cereal and coffee, we are surprised to see the Ranger turn up for a booking permit check.  I pass with flying colours, as my permit has been on display since our arrival.  Those small lunch bags are brilliant for holding said permits and I have a conveniently placed rope on which it hangs off the front of our camper.  He gives it the once over, smiles, bids me “Good Day” and is on his way to check other camps.  Sunday work must be double time … yes?  No wonder he’s smiling. 

We start the inevitable slow pack up.  Things need to dry out a little more from the rain last night, but not too much.  So long as the rain keeps away, we'll be doing a dry pack up thanks to the wind.  It still feels like about 13°C, but that could just be wind factor. 

Camper Trailers pack up quickly and are gone by 1000, Dad with boys gone about 1030, leaving us and Dread-Man.  He'll be staying for another week or more, so here's hoping he gets some wonderful weather.  If it fines up though, he'll be having rather cold nights, so I hope he's got heaps of timber to help keep him warm.
There isn't much more for us to do here but pack up in earnest.  At least the sun is coming out now.  The canvas is nearly dry, just a bit of moisture on the tropical roof, so we'll wait to see if that dries up a bit more in the wind and the 'could be' sunshine if it wasn't so cloudy.  Glenn jumps up on the kitchen box and gives it the once over with a fluffy rag we keep for just this purpose of late.

We decide to have a bite of lunch before knocking the tent over.  The dogs keep getting themselves tangled in the ropes we've attached their leads to, so next trip we'll be adding some snap hooks to the springs on the rope ends, to make it easy to attach and remove the dog leads.  It’ll just make life a little easier when the dogs need to be constantly restrained, and hopefully they won’t keep getting tangled, but we’ll have to wait and see of course.

Around 1130 we start to complete our pack up, leaving nothing but the tent to contend with.  Once we remove the poles, ropes and pegs and flip the lid, we notice that Dread Man is coming over.  He steals what timber remains at our campsite and strolls away.  All good as this timber was left by the previous camper so we don’t really worry about it.  He strolls back a bit later and discusses how easy it was to put the tent away on our camper and we chat with him for about 15 or so minutes, he grabs some more timber before heading back to his camp, leaving one very large log behind.  Glenn is happy with that as he decided last night that we’d be taking that one home.  I think it would be a bit much for Dread Man to burn anyway due to it’s thickness and the fact it’s still quite green.  Obviously taken from a tree that’s been cut down further back up the track.

On the road home by 1230. 
We miss a turn on the way out as it’s not sign posted, but end up on the highway thankfully.  We pass one car on the way out.  Once back on the highway, we head home the same way we came, although the option of heading through Kilcoy and Caboolture is another way we could go … but we did that way last week.  For the first weekend of the school holidays, the traffic is surprisingly good.
We make it home in good time and wave at my neighbour trying to remove sand from car and camper after returning from a week on Fraser Island.  I’ve still got a few hours to do some washing before the sun goes down

Trip Kilometres:  404
Trip Duration: 48 hours

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