A Travellerspoint blog

July 2015

Understanding Owls - Land For Wildlife - QLD

Talon.jpg
Talon a Masked Owl

One evening I was so excited to go with Hannah to a Land For Wildlife talk on Understanding Owls by Raptor Vision (who I thank for the photos below).
Land for Wildlife brings together like-minded landholders to share skills and knowledge about nature conservation. It is a vibrant, progressive program that aims to protect native wildlife and flora for the benefit of future generations. To date over 50,000 hectares of habitat for wildlife has been protected with a further 3700 hectares under restoration, just in South East Queensland.

Luna a Barn Owl
Luna.jpg
Barn Owls are moderately common, but generally hard to see, as they are mostly active at night. During the day, the birds roost on concealed tree branches. They are the most widespread and familiar of the owls. Barn Owls are medium sized birds (females slightly larger than males), with a 'heart-shaped' facial disc. They have sandy orange and light grey upperparts and white to cream underparts. Both the back and breast are evenly spotted with black. Birds often appear whiter than normal when illuminated in car headlights or torches. Young birds are similar to adults in plumage. When threatened, the Barn Owl crouches down and spreads its wings.
The Barn Owl is found throughout Australia. Its distribution is limited only by habitat and food availability.

China a Masked Owl
China.jpg
The Masked Owl has three basic plumage forms: pale, intermediate and dark. The plumage pattern remains similar in each case. The facial disc is chestnut to white, edged with a darker ring and darker around the bill and below the eyes. The upper parts vary from blackish-brown to grey-white and are liberally spotted with grey and white. The underparts are rufous to white, speckled with dark brown. Sexes are similar in plumage, but the females are markedly larger and generally darker than the males. Young Masked Owls are white to cream in colour when first fledged. After the first year, they closely resemble the adults but may be more heavily streaked. Tasmanian birds are larger than those on the mainland. This species is the largest Tyto owl and the second largest of the nocturnal birds (night birds) in Australia (the largest is the Powerful Owl, Ninox strenua ).
Wesley a Masked Owl
Wesley.jpg
The Masked Owl is larger and generally darker than the Barn Owl.
The range of the Masked Owl is a broad coastal band around most of mainland Australia and throughout Tasmania, and for the most part is less than 300 km from the coast. Population numbers are low on the mainland and several states give this species special conservation status. This owl was previously widespread in Tasmania.

Eclipse.jpg
Eclipse a Barking Owl
The Barking Owl is a medium-sized hawk-owl. Hawk-owls lack the definite heart-shaped face of the tyto-owls (which include the Barn Owl, Tyto alba). Adult Barking Owls are grey-brown above, with white spots on the wings, and whitish below, heavily streaked with grey-brown. The head is almost entirely grey-brown, and the eyes are large and yellow. Young Barking Owls have less streaking on the underparts and are mottled white and grey-brown on the rear of the neck. Barking Owls are nocturnal birds (night birds), although they may sometimes be seen hunting during the day.
Barking Owls are widely distributed throughout Australia, but are absent from central areas

The video clip gives a little preview to the evening (although be thankful you're sitting in the warm watching it!

The Barking Owl is a medium-sized hawk-owl. Hawk-owls lack the definite heart-shaped face of the tyto-owls. They have an extremely characteristic voice that can range from a barking dog noise to a shrill woman-like scream of great intensity. Barking owls are often said to be the source to the myths and legends surrounding the Bunyip (a large mythical creature from Australian Aboriginal mythology, said to lurk in swamps, billabongs, creeks, riverbeds, and waterholes).

Posted by charlystyles 13:07 Archived in Australia Tagged land_for_wildlife understanding_owls Comments (0)

Kanu Kapers - The Sandpatch, Great Sandy National Park - QLD

sunny 23 °C

Charlotte_jumping3.jpg
The most impressive natural scenery is that which involves a journey. Not a leisurely drive in the family car, but a journey that requires effort exertion and time.
After an hour's paddle from Harry's Hut camping ground, where we'd spent the night, we then had a 2 hour hike, all up hill
route_Cool.._Sand_Patch.jpg
The Sandpatch in the Cooloola section of the Great Sandy National Park is the one most impressive natural spectacles to be found in Australia, and it is the journey to it that makes it so. It is possible to walk in to the Sandpatch from Elanda Point, on the north western shores of Lake Cootharaba, but the canoeist gets to experience the full grandeur of the ingress route up the Noosa River.
Cooloola_Sand_Patch_hill.jpg
We passed this cormorant warming up in the morning sun
cormerant.jpg
The river is coloured deep red in the shallows, and is utterly black at depths over a metre. The first couple of kilometres up the river after the lake section is quite narrow and winding, with many dead logs and trees in the water. This can make paddling up by starlight at night a cautious affair, as we discovered on the way back down.
Campsite 3 is the start of the six kilometre walk up to the Sandpatch.
The walk is easy, climbs about 1,000ft in altitude, and in humid summer conditions, can be a sauna.
Cooloola_Sand_Patch_path2.jpg
The walking track is easy to find and follow. a pleasant walk on mostly firm sand.
Cooloola_Sand_Patch_path1.jpgCooloola_Sand_Patch_path3.jpg
However, as always there were some interesting sights along the way, such as this skink
7E9A19DE90232FA1DFA4BCBF17965EDE.jpg
a busy bee
7E279120EECD21AB4EC0BC1B248A0871.jpg
a tree burnt out by aboriginals
Matt_burnt_tree.jpg
a nobbly tree
nobbly_tree.jpg
this scribble tree
scribble_tree2.jpgscribble_tree1.jpg
this rusting tree
scribble_tree.jpg
rusty_tree.jpg
and this bleeding tree, called a pink blood wood which produced red sap
red_sap.jpg

The first glimpse was exciting
first_view.._Sand_Patch.jpg
It was good to finally arrive at the sand patch we'd been looking at from the day before, especially for Ann who'd carried all the gear
Matt___Ann.._Sand_Patch.jpg
Cooloola_Sand_Patch_sun.jpg
Charlotte_.._Sand_Patch.jpgCharlotte_jumping2.jpg
The lake visible to the south west from the Sandpatch is Freshwater Lake, with Lake Cootharaba further south.
Cooloola_Sand_Patch2.jpg
There are many variations in the colours of the sand, in the sandblow .

It is possible to walk down to Teeawah Beach at the eastern end of the sandblow.
Cooloola_S.._to_the_sea.jpg

We found a shady spot to sit and enjoy lunch
Matt_Cooloola_Sand_Patch.jpg
before all havign a snooze in the afternoon sun
Cooloola_S..ater_bottle.jpg
When we woke, we took a walk around the strange moonscape - made even more surreal with a fuzzzy head from sleeping
Ann_Cooloola_Sand_Patch.jpg
The wind has created some unqiue patterns in the sand with this stray tree branch
tree_sand.jpg
and blowing away sand to reveal wood underneath
sand3.jpg
The wind had created some beautiful patterns in the sand
sand_Cooloola_Sand_Patch.jpgsand_piece3.jpg
The sand in places looked as though it was made up of small stones,
sand2.jpgsand1.jpg
but these were infact pieces of coloured sand that crumbled when you touched them.
The colours int he sand were amazing
sandlayers1.jpgsandlayers2.jpg
again,l disguised as rock, but crumbled upon touch
sand_rock1.jpgsand_piece2.jpg
These thin pieces of sand showed the colour variation clearly
sand_piece.jpgsand_piece1.jpg

A little further on Matt picked up and dropped a piece of drift wood, which echoed around giving the impression the sand we were standing on covered a huge cavern (see video above).
So, to find out just how thin the surface we standing on was, he decided to dig!
Matt_digging.jpg
Thankfully, we didn't get through! I can't find any explanation for this hollow sound, other than one theory suggesting there is an alien spaceship underneath!!

The plan for our trip up to the sand patch was to watch the sunse.t and with such magnificent views, it didn't dissapoint.
Cooloola_Sand_Patch_dusk2.jpgCooloola_Sand_Patch_dusk.jpg
However, the drawback, was that we still had 1.5hrs to walk down, and an hour's paddle back - in the dark!
We did meet this fella goign about his business
7E5CCA659BC9D675D55717DEC36952FB.jpg
and then set off to find camp
Matt_Ann_C..ht_canoeing.jpg
Ann_night_canoeing.jpg
so, about those tree branches...??
7E7B29020C709B11F3D662A2C2795A1A.jpg
route_day2down.jpg
a great little adventure
Matt_Ann_C..atch_sunset.jpg

Posted by charlystyles 13:23 Archived in Australia Tagged everglades kanu_kapers cooloola_sand_patch harrys_hut Comments (0)

Kanu Kapers up the Noosa Everglades - QLD

semi-overcast 20 °C

No visit to Noosa on the east coast would be complete without a trip up the Everglades.
large_Everglades_Aerial.jpg
and as I'm not one for sitting on a boat being a day-tripping tourist, it seemed a great idea to canoe and camp for three days, with two good friends I'd met previously, Matt and Ann.
11796337_1..26199_n__1_.jpg
First order of the day was sorting gear, reducing it and trying to figure out how to get three days worth of food, water, clothes and campign gear into rather small storage holes in the kayacks!
gear_packing.jpg
Then, it was down to Eland Canoe Launch for a splash about,
Caroline_with_bucket.jpg
a briefing, a map and a point in the right direction
Canoe_launch.jpg
before setting off with the help of Caroline
Caroline.jpg
Matt___Ann.jpg
and then we were on our own,
Canoe_Everglades.jpg
that bit of sand in the distance was our target for the next day - Cooloola Sand Patch
Cooloola_Sand_Patch_hill1.jpg

First part of the trip took us across the expansive Lake Cootharaba
route_Day1.jpg
Charlotte_in_canoe.jpg
stopping to investigate some crab pots
crab_pot.jpg
until we took a left turn to the mouth of the Noosa River
past some pelicans just hanging out
7E7D19E0C26F74D9B753E41BEEE54535.jpg
and along to the Kinaba Hut
kinaba_hut.jpg
for a spot of lunch
7E65D5A4EBF566F93A7D7C72E2B44CD1.jpg
Heading back out in the kayacks, we made sure to avoid the turning to Lake Como (wouldn't want to end up in Italy)
Kinaba_Information_Centre.jpg
From the mouth of Kin Kin Creek across Fig Tree Point towards the Upper Noosa River, travelling between an adjacent small vegetated island built of sand and silt into the area known as the Everglades
reflections_canoe.jpg
Charlotte_in_canoe4.jpg
a beautiful, peaceful and mirror like river
river_reflections1.jpg
river_reflections.jpg
having a bit of fun under the branches along the way
7E28FE0BDA6326BB55A88E863A83CA52.jpg
although, some were maybe a little bit too low for Matt
Matt_broken_branch.jpg
river_reflections_b_w.jpg
after a little messign about on the river, investigating side turns and dead ends, which can be seen in the full video here:

we eventually arrived at Harrys Hut camping ground
Harrys_Hut_Jetty.jpg
to be met by one of our companions for the next couple of days - a Lace Monitor
Lace_Monitor.jpgLace_monitor_up_tree.jpgLace_monitor_up_tree2.jpg
where we unloaded EVERYTHING and set up camp for the next two nights
camp.jpg
Despite having two tents, it was deemed much more fun to squeeze into one - and incidentaly, it was warmer too!
Ann_Matt_C..tte_in_tent.jpg

The following morning, after feeling like we'd slept on concrete all night, we were up for breakfast
camp_table.jpg
before paddling an hour further north
Ann_canoe.jpg
route_Day2up.jpg
for a hike up to the Cooloola Sand Patch to watch the sunset to be featured in it's own blog!

After safely arriving back at camp in the dark, and cooking dinner, it was time for some cards, where we discovered playing with a red light is not helpful to the red suits!
Matt___Ann_cards.jpg

The following morning, as Matt cooked bacon, we had a few visitors to camp,
Monitor_Lizard_in_camp.jpg
first one Lace Monitor, then two, then up to five! at which point it became a bit competitive
Monitor_Lizards4.jpg Monitor_Lizards6.jpgMonitor_Lizards3.jpgMonitor_Lizards2.jpgMonitor_Lizards7.jpgMonitor_Lizards8.jpg

After another test of how much stuff can you fit in small spaces, we set off back to the canoe launch
Matt_Harrys_Hut_Jetty.jpg
Matt in change of the single kayck, which was good timing as the rudder bolts fell out half way home!
Matt_canoeing.jpg
nothing a little red wine couldn't improve
river_wine.jpg
this was our route home
route_Day3.jpg
Charlotte_in_canoe2.jpg
as we neared the end of the trip, I noticed somethign in the water and couldn't believe it when I saw an Echidna (large hedgehog) swimming!
Echidna_swimming3.jpgEchidna_swimming2.jpg
their long nose seemed to make a perfect snorkel
Echidna_swimming4.jpg
but he seemed very out of place and going nowhere fast in this large lake, so we decided to rescue him.
Echidna_swimming1.jpg
Matt scooped him up with his paddle, onto the back of the kayck where he slumped in releif
Echidna_hitching2.jpg
and we made our way to shore
Echidna_hitching.jpgEchidna___Matt.jpg
Despite all the little mishaps on the way back, we arrived back at the Elanda Canoe Launch on time
Elanda_Point_Canoe_Launch.jpg and waited for those that had got lost!
Charlotte_B_W.jpg

Final stop, to toast to a great few days messing about on the river was my favourite place in Noosa, The Boat House, for cocktails and sunset!
Ann_Matt_C..e_cocktails.jpg

Posted by charlystyles 13:13 Archived in Australia Tagged everglades kanu_kapers Comments (0)

Noosa Heads National Park - QLD

semi-overcast

A2CE3873A4699C277CE0E95D66A07554.jpg
Noosa is located approximately 136 kilometres (85 mi) north of Brisbane
Alexandra Bay
large_Alexandria_Bay_Panoramic.jpg
The beach at Noosa Heads has remained a popular tourist attraction since the 1890s. The Shire's tourism exponentially grew shortly after the Second World War.
Alexandria_Bay.jpg
In the 1800s, Noosa's early wealth came from the timber and milling industries with tourism developing in the late 1920s. The town has been the site of many tussles between developers and those seeking to preserve the town. Since the seventies, people have continued to migrate from southern states.

Boiling Pot
Boiling_Pot.jpg
In 1988, Noosa was renamed Noosa Heads
Wild_turkey_on_a_beach.jpg
Noosa National Park features spectacular coastal scenery and provides an important refuge for native wildlife including the koala, glossy black-cockatoo, ground parrot and wallum froglet.
Koala.jpgKoala_close_up.jpgKoala_bottom.jpg
Noosa National Park encompasses an area of more than 4,000 hectares, including sections surrounding Lake Weyba, Peregian and Coolum.
Noosa Hill
Noosa_Hill.jpg
No trip to Noosa is complete without a trip to Noosa National Park, so I took the opportunity to go running.
Charlotte_Tea_Tree_Bay.jpg
noosa-map_1_.jpgA2CF8069CECE319A8F787EF4C6C2FCCB.jpg
Noosa National Park is extremely important for nature conservation and is home to several rare and threatened species.
Coastal_track.jpg
Looking_ou..aser_Island.jpg
Looking out to Fraser Island
A range of different vegetation stimulates the senses, from rain forest through to areas of coastal bush with iconic Pandanus and Banksia.
Hells Gates
Hells_Gates.jpgHells_Gate..Picnic_Cove.jpg
Granite Bay
Granite_Bay.jpg
Tea Tree Bay & an example of Tessellated Pavement
A2D83128A0E48300A40DE857F8B7FD7F.jpg
Tea_Tree_B..ed_Pavement.jpg
Tea_Tree_Bay_Gully.jpg
Winch Cove
Winch_Cove_path.jpg

As the sun was setting on another day, I went back to spot the koala. There was one in a similar place, and this one had a baby, though it was hard to see, and even more difficult to photographKoala___baby2.jpgKoala___baby1.jpg!

Posted by charlystyles 13:11 Archived in Australia Tagged koala noosa_heads_national_park Comments (0)

Plum Gorgeous Rainforest Retreat, Noosa - QLD

sunny

large_View_from_the_deck.jpg
My next stop was a little pocket of paradise!
A26BE64BCB90B1CB904774739D27FEFE.jpgA2668728E2F0112B83EF0BE20F5EEF5C.jpg

Just 15mins from the coastal town of Noosa
large_Laguna_Lookout_to_Noosa.jpg

With the intention of staying only a week to help work in the rainforest, I ended up not being able to move on from this beautiful place, and wonderful people.
Garden1.jpg
Jana, David and Hannah are the most loving and genuine people I have met, and welcomed me into their home.
A280B38DA03B58FEB306131452F64066.jpgPool_evening.jpg
Table_candles.jpgMirror_candles.jpg

Every morning I had the time for a little pilates, out on the deck, with an amazing view to wake me up
A288B986BF2652F96158036719B69A4F.jpgmisty_morning2.jpg
or just sit back and relax here later in the day
lounger.jpg

First activity for the day was a tour in the buggy around the grounds:
Buggy.jpgBuggy___Jana.jpg
and if you haven't already seen it, there's a full guided tour below:

Jana especially has worked hard to gain Land for Wildlife Status for their 12 acre property. With the hope of creating a wildlife sanctuary in the future. Land for Wildlife brings together like-minded landholders to share skills and knowledge about nature conservation in a vibrant, progressive program that aims to protect native wildlife and flora for the benefit of future generations.. To date over 50,000 hectares of habitat for wildlife has been protected with a further 3700 hectares under restoration, just in South East Queensland.

First job on the list was weeding the rather used, and rather un-loved greenhouse
Greenhouse_before.jpg
Greenhouse_after1.jpgGreenhouse_after3.jpg
when I encountered these ugly critters: Cane Toads
Cane_Toad1.jpgCane_Toad2.jpg
The cane toad has poison glands, and the tadpoles are highly toxic to most animals if ingested. Because of its voracious appetite, the cane toad has been introduced to many regions of the Pacific and the Caribbean islands as a method of agricultural pest control. The cane toad is now considered a pest and an invasive species in many of its introduced regions; of particular concern is its toxic skin, which kills many animals—native predators and otherwise—when ingested.

A lot of the work involves regenerating what is existing and removing any weeds - anything that is not native.
One project was backed with excitement when we found some Bangalow Palm seeds growing at the lcal garden centre.
Bangalow_Palms2.jpg
These plants you can't buy, because they are out of fashion and nobody wants them.
Bangalow_Palms3.jpgBangalow_Palms4.jpg
But for us to regenerate the rainforest, they were invaluable, so we went round and dug up nearly 300!
Some of them got potted up
A26A08A39B6B1A79E2FD034A2BF7F402.jpg
Bangalow_Palms_potted.jpg
Charlotte_..alow_Palms1.jpg
Bangalow_Palms_potted2.jpgBangalow_Palms1.jpg
and some of them were planted out directly
Charlotte_..galow_palms.jpg

Another great project was to dig up and deliver a boot full of plants to the local meditation centre, Vipassana, for a volunteer day of planting. Mostly Cordylines,
Cordalines1.jpgCordalines2.jpgCordalines3.jpg
with a few Frangipani trees,
Frangipani.jpg
making quite a lot of plants
Bootfull1.jpgBootfull2.jpg
The calmness of the meditation centre gave me the opportunity to get close to this Kangeroo and her Joey, legs first, then the head
Vipassanna..o_joey_legs.jpgVipassanna..o_joey_head.jpg

A nice little project I enjoyed creating was a water feature to stand outside the large lounge windows
Fountain___Orchids.jpg
choosing the design and digging holes to plant orchids around the base
Charlotte_fountain.jpg
looking good with the worlds smallest species of bamboo in the centre.
Charlotte_with_fountain.jpg

As all workawayers have the pleasure at Jana's, I planted a tree, a Little Evodia
Charlotte_..ttle_Evodia.jpg
and will look forward to seeing how it grows over the years and settles in to it's surroundings at the beginning of the meditation walk where we cleared a few of the taller trees - avoiding next door's new fence!
Charlotte_meditation_walk.jpg
I look forward to seeing how this develops
7EF481120B1E279D521AED031FAA4163.jpg

Some times it's the little things that are worth taking the time to look at and I loved taking a walk with Jana to see what we might find,
Jana_walking.jpg
like this paper bark tree
Paper_bark_tree.jpg
and the comb of a local bee suspended in the long grass
honeycomb.jpg
these wasp larvae had fallen off the wall onto the deck one morning
wasp_lavae1.jpgwasp_lavae.jpgwasp_lavae3.jpg
the tiny beginning of a strangler fig, that will one day encompass and kill the host tree. I've seen plenty of larger figs, but not from this stage
7EF5E92DAE11957612435607F14DA800.jpg

For a few days of my stay we were joined by Sam and Drew (two fellow Workawayers), and are now suffering 'the Drew effect' from all the wonderful food cooked up by this professional chef!
Drew_serving_roast.jpg
It was great to have dinner and learn from each other
Workaway_dinner.jpg
Even Sasha the cat joined us
Sasha___David.jpg
though she was a little lost without Drew around afterwards
Sasha___Charlotte.jpg
Sam & Drew worked in one particular area, now named Lovers Copse
Lovers_Copse1.jpgLovers_Copse2.jpg
clearing the river bank and planting new seedlings to strengthen the area.
Lovers_Copse3.jpg
It was great to spend a few days with these two chatterboxes
Sam__Drew_..Lover_Copse.jpgSam__Drew___Charlotte.jpg

Eumundi
Eumundi_Markets.jpg
has held a firm position on the tourism map for decades thanks to Australia's biggest art and craft market which takes places here hosting more than 600 stalls. While the original markets opened in the CWA hall in 1979 - attracting a mere eight visitors and $30 profit - in recent years it has expanded to include the Eumundi Square Markets and Parkside Markets which fringe the Original Markets, offering artwork, sculptures, furniture, handmade toys, home wares, skincare, fashion and jewelry.

After a good days work it was a treat to head out with Hannah, usually to find a sunset, and sometimes to include a cocktail!!
cocktails_at_sunset.jpgA26D5E14B6DE60B4CFA6BF4559FF7DED.jpg
A favourite spot was the roof terrace of the Boat House
Sunset_Bar_sunset_boats.jpgSunset_bar_sunset.jpg
or a walk along to the marina
sunset_tree.jpg
Charlotte___Hannah_sunset.jpg
Sunset_Boat.jpg
Farr Out
Farr_Out.jpg

Sunset from Mt Tinbeerwah
Sunset_fro..h_Charlotte.jpg
Mount Tinbeerwah's exposed rhyolite summit lookout, 265m above sea level with view over the Sunshine Coast and Cooloola areas.
A short trek up to the summit gave great views over to Noosa
Sunset_fro.._over_Noosa.jpg
up to the Everglades
Sunset_fro.._Everglades.jpg
and across to Mt Cooroy
Sunset_fro..h_Mt_Cooroy.jpgSunset_fro..o_Mt_Cooroy.jpgSunset_fro.._Mt_Cooroy1.jpg
the mountain's formation began curing volcanic activity 27 million years ago when molten magma intruded into sandstone below the ground surface. Milleniums of erosion have removed the softer sandstone and left the hard, erosion resistant rhyolite exposed as Mount Tinbeerwah's prominent peak.

Sunset from Noosa Surf Club
Noosa_Surf..h_panoramic.jpg
my favourite cider, at a beautiful location
Noosa_Surf_Club_cider.jpg
another day, another sunset
Noosa_Surf_Club_beach.jpg

Posted by charlystyles 13:54 Archived in Australia Tagged noosa plum_gorgeous_rainforest_retrea Comments (1)

Out and about in Cabarlah - QLD

large_Table_Top_panoramic.jpg
Some of the great experiences happen when you don't go looking for them.
Here are some highlights from a brief stay in Cabarlah that couldn't go un-blogged!
This view of Table Top mountain was taken one day when we stopped for lunch.
Table_top.jpg

Staying with families offers opportunities to meet people, and experience real Aussie life and not just the tourist route!
Whilst staying at Tami's I met her friend Mark and also two other 'workawayers' Ann & Mat.
Dance_night1.jpg
It wasn't hard to persuade them into a night out dancing ... wihtout Angel the cat (pictured)
Dance_night2.jpg

That weekend Mark was helping a friend move house and I offered to help. Here began my Aussie experience!
It was great to be able to help Justin move, as he'd injured his back and another friend that was helping had his leg in plaster! So the odds weren't looking good... until I got involved! At the end of a day of packing, lifting and clearing, there were some items that weren't moving house, so in true Aussie style, we burnt them!
some furniture
DSCN6163.jpg
a pool table
DSCN6198.jpg
the encyclopedia collection
DSCN6145.jpg
even a keyboard
DSCN6196.jpg
with the help of Bonzo the dog
DSCN6152.jpgDSCN6154.jpg
and the accompaniment of music from the car ..which we had to move back when things got too hot
DSCN6192.jpg
We also had to move back the sofas we were sitting on, before we, or them, caught on fire
DSCN6166.jpg DSCN6181.jpgDSCN6180.jpg
and there was dancing til the wee small hours
DSCN6168.jpgDSCN6183.jpg

The following morning there was very little left
3BA4E84CCEB13C882194AFB6EF9BD7F3.jpgAfter_fire2.jpg
except this amazing piece of melted aluminium,
melted_aluminium.jpg
and Bonzo looking after the place
Bonzo.jpg

The days' entertainment, between moving house, was the sale and collection of one of the (Aussie mandatory) broken down vehicles on the property. How many men, and how many vehicles, does it take to load a car on to a trailer....???
DSCN6220.jpg

On my last night in Toowoomba we went chasing the sunset, but just a little too late.
sunset_park.jpg
However, twilight looked good too, looking down on the town
Sunset_over_Toowoomba.jpgsunset_Toowoomba.jpg
sunset_spooky_tree.jpg

Thank you Mark
Charlotte___Mark_sunset.jpg

Posted by charlystyles 13:15 Archived in Australia Comments (1)

Ravensbourne National Park Walk - QLD

Sam___Chelsea.jpg
Enjoying a Saturday walk whilst staying in Cabarlah, Ann and I joined Drew and his two children, Sam and Chelsea, for a walk in the local rainforest.
Ann_Palm_Creek.jpg
Ravensbourne National Park is situated on a spur of the Great Dividing Range between Toowoomba and Esk.
Palm_Creek4.jpg
Buaraba Creek walk, with palms on one bank and open forest on the other, is a striking destination. Piccabeen palms grow thickest where drainage is poor.
Palm_Creek6.jpg
Rainforest changes to eucalypt forest as the path goes downhill and out of the protected gully. Birds find this area, where different forests meet, irresistible.
Palm_Creek5.jpg
Downhill all the way and uphill all the way back!
Palm_Creek_steps.jpg
4FC5D534A47460B45F3A164C5951FCF5.jpg
Buaraba Creek is spring fed and always moist.
Buaraba_Creek1.jpgBuaraba_Creek2.jpg
Creeks and gullies are more than drainage lines where water runs after rain. Here they harbour narrow strips of rainforest stretching like fingers from the scrubs higher up to the open country in the valleys below.
Palm_Creek3.jpg
Signs of a Beaver, or signs of higher water levels...?
Beaver_Dam.jpg
Piccabeen palms, ferns, elkhorns and fungi thrive in the cool, moist remnants of rainforest and wet eucalypt forest along the edge of the Great Dividing Range.
trunk_flower.jpg
Evidence suggests the rainforest is slowly overtaking the open forest. Gullies with trickling streams are moist and inviting, while exposed ridges are warm and dry.
Palm_Creek1.jpg
A lot of fun for the kids
Chelsea_bridge.jpg
especially with this colourful bread to look forward to in the picnic lunch!
1AA55477D6B85849D6C010C499F62818.jpg
At the end of the walk there is a sandstone outcrop which was undoubtedly used for shelter by the Koori people.
The_Caves.jpgThe_Caves_Chelsea.jpg
Other signs are the burnt out trees, hollowed out by fire
burnt_out_trees.jpg

Beutel Lookout give panoramic views over the range towards Brisbane and the Scenic Rim and the Lockeys Valley.
Gus_Beautel_Lookout.jpgGus_Beaute..__mountains.jpg

Posted by charlystyles 13:42 Archived in Australia Tagged ravensbourne Comments (0)

El Rose Morgan Horse Stud - QLD

Polly.jpg
An hour west of Brisbane is a town called Toowoomba (nicknamed 'The Garden City') in the Darling Downs region of Queensland.
Toowoomba_view.jpg
Toowoomba hosts the Australian Carnival of Flowers each September and national championship events for the sports of mountain biking and motocross. There are more than 150 public parks and gardens in Toowoomba.
Toowoomba_location.gif
It is the sixteenth-largest city in Australia, the sixth largest in Queensland, after Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Townsville and Cairns.
Toowoomba_..n_australia.gif
My next stop was at El Rose Morgan Horse Stud in Cabarlah approximately 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) north of the Toowoomba with views to the east of the Lockyer Valley through to Brisbane and to the west across the Darling Downs.
4B020F1BF5364312DF69965D3792E2DF.jpg
Among the animals on the property were 7 chickens, 5 ducks
4AF99CA507AC1C8F6AED7421D23739FA.jpg
three outside Devonshire Rex cats - Arimus, Shareka & Paris
Cattery.jpgoutside_cats.jpg
two indoor cats; Angel a devonshire Rex
Angel1.jpg4AF48CA808765D28C986DD9495E4993C.jpgAngel_face.jpg
and Pippa, a moggy
Pippa_wine.jpgPippa1.jpg
Pippa was a great hot water bottle at night, though a bit of a bed hogger! and Angel was the sweetest little cat, when she wasn't sneezing in my face!
Pippa___Angel.jpg
Roaming the paddocks was Penny the rather fat goat
Peggy.jpg
and of course, the stables
4B15C186E4A5EBCE844094F56E93EB00.jpg
for the horses: Pollyanna
Polly1.jpgPolly2.jpg
Penny
horse_eye.jpg
Peggy_Banjo_Penny.jpg
and the two foals, Flash
Flash___Charlotte.jpgFlash1.jpgFlash.jpg
Flash___Penny.jpg
and Banjo (Penny's foal)
Peggy___Banjo.jpg
I tried platting Polly's tail, but it didn't look quite like the professionals
Polly_s_tail.jpg
and of course the dogs, and Brownie in particular, who was Matt's little follower
Matt___Brownie.jpg

Matt and Ann were doing a great job to train the foals, and also take the time to retrain the horses
Ann_in_round_pen.jpg

The round pen was one project the three of us undertook, to remove the bright orange mesh (which we found out wasn't foal proof),
Round_Pen_before.jpg
Matt___Ann_round_pen.jpg
and create a more rustic look
Round_pen_finished.jpg

It was great to work in a beautiful environment with great people, but unfortunately something's were shared that weren't necessary, like colds! This is me keeping warm - a new fashion statement at El Rose!
feeling_ill.jpg

Posted by charlystyles 13:20 Archived in Australia Tagged el_rose_morgan_horse_stud cabarlah Comments (0)

Beaches & Parks in Brisbane - QLD

sunny

Streets_Beach_sign.jpg
South Bank is Brisbane’s premier lifestyle and cultural destination.
Charlotte_Streets_Beach.jpg
Located on the southern banks of the Brisbane River, its 17 hectares of lush parklands, world-class eateries, stunning river views and hundreds of delightful events all year round make it the perfect place to relax and unwind.
Big_Wheel.jpg
this beautiful flower archway creates an enchanting walk along the river.
Flower_Arch4.jpgFlower_Arch2.jpgFlower_Arch3.jpgFlower_Arch1.jpgFlower_Arch5.jpgCharlotte_flowers.jpg
Southbank parklands features lush parklands, a man made lagoon
Streets_Beach_Pool.jpg
beach,
D739EE3200EAF864E4BEE8A113401695.jpgStreets_Beach1.jpg
endless picnic areas, Vege patch
Veg_Patch.jpg
lots of bikeways, stunning river views
Streets_Beach2.jpg
and public artworks.

Roma St Parkland
large_upper_parkland_view.jpg
Hugging the northern side of the CBD, Roma Street Parkland and Spring Hill are iconic parts of Brisbane and its history.
Roma Street Parkland, one of Brisbane’s premier parks, is considered to be one of the two best examples of contemporary display gardens in Australia and in my opinion far outdoes the Botanic Gardens in Brisbane.

Gardens and Precincts
window_view.jpg
Designed to create a public garden that would excite the imagination and be an attractive environment for both the local community and visitors to the city.
shrubs.jpg
Planting throughout the parkland has been carefully considered and is sensitive to the climate. Microclimates representative of subtropical Queensland have been created in the parkland as distinct precincts, creating the feel of a subtropical wonderland representing Queensland’s varied plant life. Alongside the planting, the parkland hosts a number of community spaces for events and activities and is also a popular wedding venue.

Upper Parkland
0C29F8E6CAD60B226FF435397F2A5B14.jpg
Encompassing the original Albert Park and Recreation Ground, the Upper Parkland is a wonderful recreational area, home to the children’s playground, amphitheatre and the contemporary Harry Oakman Pavilion. The Upper Parkland provides some of the best vantage points of the city skyline.
Fountain_CBD2.jpg

Amphitheatre
Ampitheatre2.jpg
A big brass band? A local rock band? Shakespeare? Whatever your taste in music or theatre, the 1,200 seat Amphitheatre plays host to a range of concerts and theatre productions throughout the year, including the popular Bands in the Park sessions.
Ampitheatre1.jpg

Spectacle Garden at Colin Campbell Place
0C185A8B9717D12179291DC1A3322C62.jpg
Enjoy meandering through the winding pathways of this garden lovers' paradise with an ever-changing seasonal display of blooms. The Spectacle Garden at Colin Campbell Place displays a vivid array of colour all year and includes a collection of flowers, herbs, water features and art works. You might even be greeted by one of the resident water dragons.

The Rainforest and Fern Gully
0C21DD83C0E598F39BB8957E813AA8C9.jpg
The chance to explore a subtropical misty rainforest in the centre of Brisbane!
Fern_Gully_path.jpg
Follow the pathway at ground level to walk through the lush ferns and gushing creeks or take one of the walkways leading you gently above the tree tops, allowing you to look down through the forest canopy to the pathways and plants below.
Fern_Gully_Waterfall.jpg
Fern Gully Bridge
Fern_Gully_Bridge1.jpg
is 82m long and is constructed from structural steelwork and Australian hardwood.
Fern_Gully_Bridge2.jpg
The largest span of 15m extends over a portion of the lake below.
Fern_Gully_Bridge3.jpg
The random angles of the supporting columns are intended to reflect the varied nature of trees within the parkland.
0C2F0F88F2817979476E7B04CA87D07F.jpg
Angiopteris Ravine - the world's largest fern, found naturally only in two isolated areas of Queensland, is one of many rare native species in this misty, shaded valley.

Lake Precinct
Roma_Lake.jpg
With its wide open lawns and lakeside walkways, the Lake Precinct is a wonderful place to take a relaxing walk, have a picnic or watch our resident ducks on the lake.
fish_lake.jpg
Fountain_CBD.jpg
Explore the plants from the South Pacific, Australian wetlands and sub-tropical Queensland.

Celebration Precinct
Waterfall_wall2.jpg
Celebration Precinct boasts a magnificent lawn, which is often used for major community events. With unique artwork, a living mural and a dramatic water wall,
Waterfall_wall1.jpg
This precinct is one of the focal points of the parkland. Crossing over the little bridge between the water walls takes you through to Frangipani Court with its lovely trees, barbecue areas and the Jumping Salmon water feature. This Ibis was enjoying the surroundings too!
0C27300CB026A7BC4142B69B5DDC87F9.jpg0C265C8AF33ADE95C46DBC9E27B9FF67.jpg0C259DCCA2E289272ACF229FE9826A0C.jpg

Spring Hill is home to the Old Windmill and Spring Hill Baths, and also plays host to a number of vibrant cafes and restaurants, making this area a unique inner-city paradise.

The Old Windmill
Windmill.jpg
commenced in 1828, the windmill is the oldest surviving structure in Queensland. built to provide convicts with wheat and maize using two sets of millstones, one driven by the sails of the windmill and the other by a treadmill.
The_Old_Windmill2.jpg
In 1861 it was converted into an Observatory and Signal Station.
From the late 1880s and into the twentieth century, the Fire Brigade used the tower at night as a fire observation platform and in 1934 the first experimental television broadcast in Queensland was transmitted from the tower.
The_Old_Windmill.jpg

Posted by charlystyles 13:29 Archived in Australia Tagged big_wheel streets_beach Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 13 of 13) Page [1]