Yaddamun Trail, White Rock – The Pollyanna Principle

Yaddamun Track Sunset

“I beg your pardon, I never promised you a rose garden.”  When I first sat down to write about the Yaddamun Trail, an exposed, hot, dry, hilly, 19 kilometre walk at White Rock Conservation Estate near Ipswich, I recalled my mother singing these words many years ago. The Lynn Anderson hit continues, “Along with the sunshine, there’s gotta be a little rain some time.”  In the case of the Yaddamun Trail, more rain and far less sunshine  would have been a relief. Continue reading

The Tarcoola Track – An Experiment

tree colours 2

When this twentieth century of ours became obsessed with a passion for mere size, what was lost sight of was the ancient wisdom that the emotions have their own standards of judgement and their own sense of scale. In the emotional world a small thing can touch the heart and the imagination every bit as much as something impressively gigantic; a fine phrase is as good as an epic, and a small brook in the quiet of a wood can have its say with a voice more profound than the thunder of any cataract.                                   – Henry  Beston, Northern Farm

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Coffee Waffle and Sunstroke – Wivenhoe Trails and Spillway Common

“Accept the abundance,” the Cormorant Bay Café waitress ordered with a bow after placing a complimentary freshly brewed coffee next to my meal. Abundance sums up my three explorations in summer of the Wivenhoe Dam area, 80km west of Brisbane. To be honest, I would have been satisfied with much less abundance of sunshine and sweat while attempting to walk the 16km of trails. Continue reading

The Art of Hiking – White Rock Galleries

Whit

Regular readers know I’m a sufferer of  bark bliss, fungi fever, lichen lust, moss mania, and insect infatuation.   These distractions mean walking partners need to be passionate about the same interests,  have the patience of a saint, or be content to charge  ahead without me. Today I reveal my rock rapture, another distraction which contributes to the torture of walking companions. Continue reading

Feathers, Flowers and Tomfoolery at Toohey’s Forest and Mt Gravatt Reserve

I am writing this post in a slightly sleep deprived state due to the antics of my furry friends, the nocturnal brushtail possums, Trichosurus vulpecula, which have been thundering across my roof more than usual lately.  I’m not sure what has caused this increase in activity but I’m hoping they take a possum chill-pill soon and allow me a little more uninterrupted sleep.   One of them likes to snooze on top of my open garage tilt-a-door, but during a gusty day recently, when the door started to flap, it was in danger of  becoming a possum pancake  so I had to encourage it out onto a tree. Continue reading

The Unplanned Hike : Spontaneous Sauerkraut, Spiders and a Green Addiction at Mt French

“It was tragic how life had sucked her down to the bones, all her spontaneity, her laughter and freedom had vanished. I knew then that I didn’t ever want to be like that. Whatever happened, life was something too precious to give up on so easily.”

– Belinda Jeffrey, One Long Thread

I must acknowledge the role of cheese and potatoes in the writing of this post. What do these foods have to do with a hike? Well, as soon as the chilly nights arrive my body which was naturally reed-like in my 20s suddenly craves potatoes and cheese in vast quantities. If I waited until I could find a walking partner available to fit in with my odd schedule, by springtime I’d have to be lifted out of my house with a crane. Death by lack of exercise is riskier than death by murder in my case. Having now defended solo hiking let’s get down to what actually happened on what I have dubbed The Unplanned Hike. Continue reading

Great Expectations – The Mount Maroon Version

Mt Maroon and Stinking Roger

Whenever my hikes don’t run to plan, I’m reminded of the words, “The best-laid schemes of mice and men,” from a Robert Burns’ poem. This in turn brings to mind a couple of grim scenes from John Steinbeck’s novella, Of Mice and Men. I doubt that the English teacher who chose this book for my class envisaged that 30 years later one of her students would still be having flashbacks. My recent hike at Mt Maroon involved another visit from the now controversial Steinbeck classic.  Continue reading