Friday, 29 May 2015

On the Way to the Dentist

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Monday 18 May

I had a dental check up at Teacher's Union Health, in the City, at 3.10pm, on this day. I decided to organise a catch up with a cousin who lives near the Mt Cootha Botanical Gardens, at 12.30pm, for a short walk and coffee, before my appointment.
After exploring the newly created area beside the Legacy Way, we decided to follow a road up and over the hill behind a sculptured tower. This tower is the ventilation shaft for the Legacy Way Tunnel, which opens this weekend.


Our decision to head up the road was unbelievably rewarding. I have spent many hours in these gardens when my boys [29, 27] were smaller. In more recent times I have visited, but not realising the changes that have been made, I've just enjoyed my favourite spaces. I was stunned at how extensive the gardens have become and the fact that I was totally unaware of the vast new areas. It turned out to be 2 hours walking, no coffee and a dash to the dentist.

We were blown away by this discovery. How could we have not heard about it from a friend. Created in 1995 to celebrate 50 years of peace after WW2

After walking across a wooden bridge, over a dry creek bed, you enter this court yard. View to the left.

View to the right

The plaques are not just for those who lives were lost, but for remembering all who were affected, especially the families at home. Cullen is my maiden name, but these men are not relations.

The surrounding garden plantings are to represent the land, sea, and the distance to battle.

Continuing our meanderings, each new discovery convinced us that Brisbane's Botanical Gardens compete with the astounding King's Park in Perth.

                   Tranquill lagoon.

                      Rainforest and gurgling stream.

 Bunya Tree grove

 Even a view of Brisbane

              Rose sculpture in the rose garden.

And we just had to return through my long term favourite, the Japanese garden.

Now to find time for a relaxed full day visit.

Two days later my walking buddies and I returned to Brisbane Forest Park, to again enjoy Enoggera Dam Reserve. We were greeted by 2 very passive curlews.

We discovered that a grassy canoe entry point had been created.

What bliss to be gently paddling on a perfect day.

After lunch we drove further up the mountain to Jollys Lookout to head off on the 8 km return Thylogale Track. We are often disappointed with directions and distance markers. We did love this walk with its vistas to Moreton Island, Redcliffe, Brisbane, canopies of thick leafy greens and its mossy fallen trees. Tonight however, I discovered that we had missed a huge Moreton Bay Fig, so dignified that it warranted a board walk around it.

'Hiking down under' is certainly a day not to be missed!

I do hope you have enjoyed visiting the varied beauty of these areas that I have enjoyed so much in the past week. I would love to read your comment.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Taking Time to Breathe the Mountain Air

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Wednesday 13 May

Through 'Must Do Brisbane,' I had read about a beautiful waterfall outside Canungra. The article commented that it was a little difficult to locate and a steep climb down. I had googled the location of the falls, without much success. Recently I was talking to a friend who lives above Canungra, at Beechmont. Lyn hadn't visited them, but she was able to give me directions to the falls, found in Killarney Glen. Lyn also suggested that I might also enjoy Denham Reserve at Beechmont and only a short distance from her home. Thank you Lyn for your guidance to both these spots of untouched beauty and tranquility and for the time I spent with you, between the walks.

Each walk was only 3.3 kms and not knowing what they would reveal, I decided to set off by myself the Saturday prior to our usual Wednesday walk. The previous week we had had the 'rain event'. The sooner I visited the more impressive the falls would be.

Halfway up the mountain to Beechmont, I almost missed the poor signage for Killarney Glen. I then hiked a steep zig zag path, through forest, dropping quickly to lower Back Creek. Below is what greeted me as I stepped out from the trees. I had found paradise and was in no hurry to leave, soaking up the sounds of the creek tumbling its small boulders, before swirling gracefully over the fall.

When I eventually tore myself away, I discovered an overgrown track that followed the creek's path, as best it could. My heart sang as I explored.

Time seemed to stand still, but I knew I had to tear myself away to have time to visit Denham Reserve.

A view across the valley from above Killarney Glen.

 A winding 15 minute drive had me at the trail head for Denham Reserve. Congratulations and thanks are due to the Beechmont Landcare Volunteers for creating and maintaining the park and trail of this beauty spot. 

Initially the path followed the ridge line until it had to drop steeply to Back Creek. Prior to the steep descent, there was a view to the dramatic upper falls.

The tenacity of nature.

Once I had descended to Back Creek, it was a short hike along to the cascading lower falls. To reach the upper falls, a crossing had to be made here. On this occasion I showed some sense for once and just relaxed and took in the beauty of this special area on such a blue sky day.

Walking Wednesday loomed and I decided that I should share these special places with my friends, sooner rather than later. We would start early and to make up the kilometres, we would then drive to Tamborine Mountain and hike 2 waterfall trails, to make about 15 kms. Well, that was the plan.
We always have coffee at the trail head, but on this occasion I suggested we put the thermos and other items in our back packs and enjoy it by the stream. Fatal. Margot and Jenny were as totally blown away
as I had been by the tranquil beauty of the scene before them.
 Morning tea view.

 Our decision has been made to cancel Tamborine and just relax and enjoy our surroundings.
 We were mesmerised by the shimmering reflection of the water's movement on the rocks.

 With time to spare, I explored further down Back Creek. It was difficult to turn back.

On our way out, we nailed the extremely steep and ruggard 4 wheel drive track.

 And so it was on to Denham Reserve. Margot and Jenny were again very impressed with the vista, if not with the difficulty of the track.

On returning to the park, we continued to relax, making the most of the lush, green grass to sit on, as we contentedly munched our sandwiches.

'Walking down under' can't get much better than this!
 Or can it?

I do hope you have enjoyed Killarney Glen and Denham Reserve as much as we did. I would love to read your comment.