Friday, 26 June 2020

Just a Hint of Autumn

Tuesday 2 June

The Gaitor Girls chose Springwood Conservation Park for there first walk back together.  It was a chilly 12C as we set off. The steep terrain soon had us taking layers off and the beauty of Lake Dennis warmed our hearts.

A controlled burn.

We somehow managed to be on the wrong side of the fence.

Winter walking is the best!

I would love to read your comment.

Friday, 19 June 2020

Hunting for Resin

Tuesday 16 June

Last Sunday, Rebecca, Gaiter Girl [GG], wonderful friend and Primary Science teacher extraordinaire, sent me a text asking if the GG's could hike at the Plunkett Conservation Park, only a twenty minute drive from our local area..

An inquiry into why, resulted in this message.
'I need to find the resin of the Grass Tree for my year 6 science lessons. '

Here is her rationale for the lesson. " Incorporating indigenous perspectives into physical and chemical change lessons. Resin mixed with ochre and kangaroo poo and heated, can then be moulded into hard drying handles for knives etc.The resin can be rewarmed to reshape - physical change. Fire sticks dipped in resin can be used as long burning torches  - chemical change."

Plunkett Conservation Park is another hiking area best enjoyed in winter.
I knew exactly where Rebecca wanted to look for the resin, but initially I wanted to take the 4 km return trail to The Cave, being the only one of my friends not to have visited it. The trail was open bushland, but as we ascended higher there was a scattering of Grass Trees. Our search commenced but was very unproductive.

Initial discoveries were found to be roo poo.

Approaching the cave.

Janice looking into the cave from above.

Our descent. 

Returning to the car, we drove to the Quinzeh Road entrance and the trail to Wickham Lookout. Much of the trail here is on slabs of sandstone and parrallels a ridgeline of sandstone outcrops. Halfway up there were masses of Grass Trees as expected. Our hunt continued.

No, Rebecca and Janice aren't looking for resin here, but were admiring nature's patterns

After much demoralising searching around the base of young, leafy Grass Trees, I found a rotting trunk. 

Success! Our excitement was as if we had found gold and 'resin fever' kept us hunting for a good hour. Each small piece found, increased our desire to find the bigger one.

This resin, trapped in the bark of the trunk, given time and bushfires, becomes spherical. The pieces we found were quite small, but they can be thumb size.

All to soon it was time to stash our haul, minute as it was, and continue our ascent to the lookout. Rebecca opted to sit on an outcrop to enjoy the view and uncuccessfully scan the treetops for koalas.

On our descent, Janice and I made the decision to leave the trail and follow the rocky outcrop edge down. It was awesome.
 Rebecca was spotted as we neared her rocky perch. Can you see her?

Commencing the descent, mushroom outcrops were spectacular.


Other magical moments.

It was a wonderfully rewarding morning in the bush in more than one way. I can see however, that resin hunting will be the order of the day whenever we spot a rotting Grass Tree.

Up date - The lessons were loved by the children, especially the roo poo!

I would love to read your comment.

Thursday, 11 June 2020

Enjoying Scribbly Gum Conservation Park

Wednesday 10 June

Finally the Hungry Hikers have been able to regroup and enjoy a hike, albeit with social distancing. A new hike had been found, but the weather forecast was not great for a fine day. We wanted rain. We wanted to walk! We went for it and a magical day ensued.

The intermittent showers were mostly light and refreshed the landscape colours. Raindrop jewels sparkled from leaf tips, grasses glistened and the colour of the bark of our amazing gums, was intensified. The air was crisp and invigorating as we meandered along the trails, in total awe of this magical landscape we found ourselves in. Many a wrong turn was made, but it didn't matter. We soon realised that the name of the park was very apt.


Coping with winter rain, Queensland style!

A She-oak glistening with a multitude of raindrops, as heavier rain falls.

She-oak leaves.

Fresh foliage on a Banksia.

She-oak blossom.

Golden Banksias

Platypus Creek.

The following morning I was out on my usual early morning circuit with my friend Mary. The foggy sunrise was a joy as we slogged up the steep ascent of Mt Warren Hill.

And on Tuesday morning, as I was departing to join the Gaiter Girl's hike at 6.30am, I was thrilled to see the setting moon and Jupiter in the crystal clear sky. Jupiter being the dust speck, bottom right. My Sony point and shoot camera does an amazing job on so many occasions.

I sincerely hope that you too are finding the joy of nature, in these difficult times.