I am afraid that I am getting a bit slack with this blogging thingo I see it has been another week gone by since I last blogged. Over the Anzac Holiday weekend we had several visitors to the park. Among them was a lovely couple from Wynnun near Brisbane doing a shake down trip in their new motorhome. Mal and Geraldine are heading off in a couple of weeks, she had only a few days left to work and then they would be on their way. We spent Saturday evening with them, drinking and talking and Geraldine made scones for mornng tea on Sunday. Saturday we drove over to Ipswich to do some shopping and to catch up again with Bill and Leanne.
Sunday the family descended upon us from Brisbane. We all drove out to Lake Moogerah for a picnic lunch. This is a lovely spot with views of the lake and nearby Mt Edward and the Moogerah Dam Wall. There was quite a bit of birdlife that also joined us for lunch.
Mainly kookaburras and other cheeky friends. The little ones enjoyed themselves running around on the grassed areas near the water and we all watched the many water skiers enjoying the very pleasant weather out on the lake.
After lunch we crossed over the Dam Wall and some of the family followed the summit walk for 3kms.
Bill and myself only walked a short way, and while they were away we ventured down to the lower picnic area. This again was a lovely quieter spot.
There were many families out for the day. We drove over to the other side of the lake to check out the boat ramp and caravan park. Maybe in the future it will be kept in mind for a holiday spot.
We drove back down a different way and went through Mt Alford and Dugandan. They left then to make the trip back home
This house was perched high up in the mountainswith views all around and their own plane for when the road was unroadworthy.
We had an absolute Magic day yesterday. We drove out of Boonah and literally headed for the hills. We drove up into the mountains along Carneys Creek Road into rich lush green dairy country.
The soil is so black and rich you can actually smell it. A lot of vegetables are grown here. Mainly I think carrots.
There are lots of fat cows here with their diet of lush green grass although this one is in calf
We drove higher and higher and the road was steeper and steeper through mountainous terrain and into hush thich green rainforest. The forrest formed a canopy over the road it was really beautiful.
Now you all know I love to live near the water but my second choice has always been the mountains specially in the rain forest. The valleys are not unlike the Ferguson Valley in the South of WA, while up in the clouds on the mountains it is reminisence of the Walpole area near Albany.. If it didn't have the cold weather that goes with it I could live quite happily here. Now speaking of cold weather we are finally getting a taste of cooler weather although so far it is quite pleasant nicer for sleeping and we have to add a cardigan to the shorts and T-shirt for the evening. We drove up through the clouds along Spring Creek Road to Queen Mary Falls.
Queen Mary Falls
We had a lovely devonshire tea in the Cafe and met a nearby potato farmer. His name would you beleive was John Smith and he invited us on to his property where we drove up to the top of the hill. From here we could view the whole area as far as Warwick and beyond. He has lived on the farm for over seventy years. How lucky is that!!!
We descended down to the falls and decided that the walk was so pleasant that we would do the 2km circuit.
The only problem was we went the wrong way and we had rather a steep climb up a multitude of steps to get back up the top.
The falls were magnificent and apparently bellbirds are in abundance in the area. They have a clear crystal call almost like a tingle of a bell. In the stilllness of the forest it sounds wonderful.
One of the local fauna on the path
After we continued our drive, stopping briefly at Daggs Falls and then meandering our way to Killarney.
Quoting the brochure, Killarney is truly the gateway to the Mountain Parks where Waterfalls and peaceful mountain scenery await the visitor and the travellers are made most welcome in the true Irish fashion. We decided to follow the river on the way back.
The waters of the Condamine River are the start of Australia's longest river system Condamine River Gorge has 14 river crossings and is a popular 4-wheel drive activity.
This was one of the river crossing we had to cross it is called second crossing.
After reaching what is called the Head we turned off towards the White Swamp falls until the road met up again with Spring Creek Road and took us back to Boonah.
Saturday saw us up and about and in Jimny heading up the Cunningham Highway and turning on to the England Hwy to arrive at our destination of Leyburn. We met up for the day with another CMCA chapter "The Darling Downs Drifters" they were camped for the weekend in a rest area 66 kms south west of Toowoomba.. Leyburn is known for its Leyburn Sprints which are held later in the year. The club hosted their own version of the "Leyburn Sprints" with a few box cars of their own design.
A lot of hilarity and laughter was the end result with a few being booked for "over the Limit" We shared lunch with them, which we purchased at the nearby General Store, which boasted the biggest ham, name burger around. Renewed friendship with some that we had met previously at the Rocky Rally. Namely Chris and his wife, Esme, Bev,Bill and others. We returned by another route through Warwick making it an all round trip.
We drove through the famous Cunningham Gap screened by lovely dense forest. It was quite dark driving through as the foliage was so thick it almost became a curtain Lookouts was spread throughout showing glimpses of hidden valleys and more mountains which form the Great Dividing Ranges.
Sunday we sauntered over to the markets conveniently situated in the Showgrounds. We spied a rather unusual fruit, Rosella. quite common over here but we in particular haven't seen it before. Apparently they belong to the hibiscus family and they form a flower bud and the stone is removed and then boiled to make jam. We purchased some jam to give it a try. Maybe Bill might make some pancakes later this week to try it on. The afternoon was spent topping up on the baking, pumpkin fruit cake and almond crisps were on the agenda. Bill and Leanne arrived as they were being removed from the oven. They are friends we know from Ipswich who are building their motorhome. It is almost finished I think they will be on their way in a couple of weeks. Tomorrow we are driving up to Queen Mary Falls for a day's outing we intend driving up one way and returning via an alternate route.
We left The Rifle Range about mid morning and set off up the Cunningham Highway towards Boonah. The travel through the outskirts of Brisbane was quite easy and we were soon out on the open road. Our first stop was at the turnoff to Boonah a short distance from Warwick.
It was a lovely free camping spot with many travellers taking advantage of the area available. We duly arrived at the Boonah Showgrounds Caravan Park around about 1pm. The fees here are $90 a week and we will probably stay about a month all going well. We set up happy hour with a lovely couple travelling up to Bigriggen National Park, where they were meeting friends for the weekend. They were originally from Western Australia and have been living in Qld for a number of years. After a few wines or two we all decided to go uptown for dinner. Most venues had closed as it was 8pm but the local cafe was open. It was agreed upon that we would all come back for breakfast to try their "lambs Fry & Bacon". We met again for brekkie and farewelled our new found friends, Gary and Pam and set off to explore the area.
The walk way up to the lookout at Mt French
Boonah is surrounded by the mountain range and is in the Scenic Rim area. We drove up to the lookout at Mt French and the view was breathtaking.
One of the views fromMr French the town in the distance is Dugan
We then ventured to the Wild Horse Mountains, but halfway there the road dwindled out so we retreated back down. On the way down we were confronted by three cows blocking our way on the road. With a little encouragment and a inpromptu photoshoot they were soon on their way.
Our next stop was at the Kooroomba Vineyard and Lavender Farmto Mt Alford. We tasted their lovely wines and admired the breathtaking 60 degree views of the Mountain Ranges and the rolling canvas of lavender and grapevines. It boasted a beautiful restaurant and gift shop as well as their cellar. Well worth a visit.
Tomorrow is the day. We are moving on although not very far just 100kms west of here to a small RV friendly town of Boonah. Not sure where Boonah is? Its out towards Warwick. Not much happened this week just preparing for the move, shopping washing and all those mundane things we have to do. Sunday night we had dinner with the family at the Moreton Bay Trailer Boat Club in Manly. We enjoyed another lovely meal there.
Monday the kids were still on school holidays so we went to see How to train your Dragon. It was a great kids movie and it was in 3D. DH went under sufferance but I think he enjoyed himself. I happened to spy him laughing a couple of times. We pick the kids up from school today for the last time. Tommorrow we make tracks.
What is it they say about Queensland. Beautiful one day and perfect the next. Its all too true!!!! we have been experiencing some remarkable lovely weather. It rains occasionaly but usually overnight. We took advantage of the pleasant day yesterday and drove up to the Glass House Mountains on the Sunshine Coast Hinterland about 80kms from here arriving at the township in time for an enjoyable leisurely lunch at the GlassHouse Tavern. DH attempted to try the Mountain Man Burger and it was huge!!!! He now has his name on their Wall of Fame. Incidently we didn't have dinner that night we were too full from lunch.
I didn't quite know what to expect at the Glass House Mountains. I mean Glass House- what does that remind you of? See through? Hot House? Well it was none of these. Apparently they were named by Lieutenant James Cook in 1770. It is believed that Cook thought that the peaks resembled the glass furnaces in his hometown in Yorkshire England. In 1799 Matthew Flinders explored this area. He reached Mt Beerburrum's summit but was unsuccessful in his attempt to climb Mt Tibrogargan.
Did I hear you ask how were they formed? The Glass House Mountains were once lava plugs within volcanic comes. The volcanic cones and surrounding Landsborough sandstone were eroded by wind and water over 25 million years to reveal the lava plug which you can see today. These steep-sided plugs of trachyte and rhyolite are amongst the most impressive landmarks in South East Queensland. They can be seen from as far away as the Scenic Rim on the Queensland/New South Wales border.
On the way down the mountain we stopped at a little wayside stall selling jams, pickles, sauces and roasted macadamia nuts etc. I thought I would try some banana, ginger & macadamia jam. Dh chose fig and Chilli and also fig and ginger jams. Two small bags of Macadamias jumped into the car with us also, one was chilli the other was honey & sesame. We ended the day with a visit to Graham at Bracken Ridge on the way home. Today we are indulging in a little R & R. I maybe able to coerce Dh to going over to Spotlight sometime today. Now won't he just love that.
Three very happy children on Easter Sunday after their Easter Hunt. We had a big cookup breakfast with the family. Pancakes, bacon & eggs and our family secret recipe of chilli beans. (although they were altered a bit to include a curry flavour) I think this family recipe gets added to with each generation. But it still tastes very nice. Afterwards DIL and I went along to the movies to see The Blind Side, the movie that Sandra Bullock received an oscar for. She definetly deserved this as she played an excellent part. A lovely movie to go and see and its a true story also. So if you would like to spend some time out seeing a movie I would highly recommend this one. It has my tick of approval. In the evening we went along to the Redlands Easter Family Festival which was hosted by the combined Churches in the Redlands to celebrate the Easter story of Jesus' death and resurrection. Everything was free. Their was donuts, sandwiches, fairy floss, snow cones and sausage sizzles, rides galore and face painting. Mural painting, entertainment etc. A very generous gesture by the churches, their helpers and sponsors and the joy was reflected on all the happy faces there. The true spirit of Easter and I would personally like to thank them. They have been hosting this event since 1999. Happy Easter everyone!!!!
Another beautiful day in paradise. Today we thought we would take a drive and visit the Albert Valley Rovers, the CMCA chapter we met up with in Lowood and shared their Christmas party. They were having a gathering at the Redlands Bay Amateur Fishing Club. DH thought it was the boat club or the yacht club, he couldn't remember what but after driving around Raby Bay and Cleveland we called into the information bureau. They obviously don't know their area very well because they told us The Esplanade was not in Redland Bay it must have been in Redcliffe. (the Other side of Brisbane) We had been putting The Esplanade in the GPS but it was telling us there were no matches. DH was getting a bit befuddled by then and couldn't remember if it was Redland Bay or Redcliffe (as you do) so we drove back to the bus (after enjoying a fruit fantasy at Cold Rock in Cleveland (my favourite)) and checked up on the information. Yes it was The Esplanade in Redland Bay but still the GPS wouldn't come to the party. So Dh decided to ring someone in the chapter to find out where it was. I don't know why he didn't ring earlier but whatever!!! We finally arrived there and spent afternoon tea with them. The Fishing Club is opposite where you catch the ferries to Stradbroke Island, so much for the info centre!!!!
The Aust Team in Action
I don't know if I mentioned this but we are camped in the Queensland Shooting Complex and at the moment the Australian Rifle Team are getting ready for the Commonwealth Games. They are practising in the 1000 metre range. I can't even see the targets from that far let alone shoot at it. They are extremely professional and it is quite interesting to watch them. Its not every day you get woken up with a bang or two. In our case we are.
The 1000 metre range
Tomorrow is Easter Sunday and we are having Breakfast with the family and sharing Easter Eggs and then DIL & I are going to see The Blind Side at the movies. In the evening we are going to the easter festival in Redlands. We have to make the most of spending time with them as we will be leaving soon. We will miss them very much. We have got to know them very well this time after enjoying some quality time with them.
It was such a beautiful day we decided to visit Mt Tambourine. Mt Tambourine is about 40klms away as you turn off the Pacific Highway heading towards the Gold Coast. Driving along the road towards the Mountain you are greeted by Rain Forest vegetation and beautiful scenic views.
The forest has many walkways and the silence is broken only by the distinct sounds of birds from the treetops. We stopped first at Cedar Creek Falls and walked down what seemed like a zillion steps to a lovely pool with a waterfall backdrop.
The Cedar Creek Waterfall
The creek meandered through the park towards the waterfall. Lots of people were swimming here and it seemed a very popular spot.
Being Good Friday and a public holiday everyone was out enjoying the beautiful countryside and the lovely weather. It was a great place for a picnic with BBQs available as well as benches and tables to spread the goodies on.
This lizard was near the Picnic Area (it is a real one)
Our next stop was Curtis Falls where we again went on a bush walk to a cluster of shops and eateries. Lunch was here and was enjoyed in the courtyard of a quaint little cafe. Next to this was a lolly Shop which I duly admired but didn't indulge. Trying to be good.
We then drove up higher to a quaint little village consisting of Art Galleries, boutiques, Wineries, Fudge Shops and places selling nut products. We exited out a different way and headed towards Oxenford. To the left of us was magnificent views of the hills around and in the distance the Gold Coast. You couldn't fathom really we were in a another world just over from the busy Pacific Highway and the Theme Parks.
One of the rides at White Water Word
To top the day off we had a lovely meal with the family. Trent did an excellent job of cooking fish that he caught up in 1770. He doesn't take after his father that's for sure.