The Lookout is a few kilometres out of town on a good, mostly-gravel road which leads through pine plantations before winding uphill to a parking area and a lookout with very good views to the North over Cardwell and Rockingham Bay towards Mission Beach and Dunk Island. A walking track leads further uphill from this point for even better views to the North and panoramic views across the channel to Hinchinbrook Island. The extra walk is worth the effort but I have to say it was also more effort than I had expected: it’s only a few hundred metres but it’s quite steep.
The Townsville region received quite a deluge between mid February and early March, after a dry start to what we hoped would be a good Wet. Green Path recently posted photos of the Town Common after rain, and here are some from Hervey’s Range to the West of the city.
The waterfall photo above is the first chronologically. It was taken by Steve Coleman about March 5 Continue reading “Hervey’s Range after rain”
My third visit to Wallaman Falls was a day trip with Wildlife Queensland. A full report will appear on their blog in due course but I thought I might quickly share this photo and mention my previous posts – from almost exactly one year ago and two years ago, as it happens. (This is a good time of year for camping and bushwalking, since everything is still quite green after the Wet but the weather is reliably fine and not too hot.)
I have added the spider and insect photos from this trip to my existing Wallaman Falls album on flickr.
Jourama is typical of the waterfalls which tumble off the edge of the Great Dividing Range between Townsville and Cairns. I have posted about Wallaman (very recently), Murray and Behana, and I have known and liked Jourama Falls for a very long time so I was surprised to find, when I checked, that I hadn’t already posted about them too.
The Jourama Falls section of the Paluma Range National Park (park information) is tucked into the northern end of the park (map), about an hour north of Townsville and only a few kilometres off the highway. The access road takes you to a peaceful swimming hole and picnic ground, then past a camping ground with the usual National Parks facilities to a carpark at the beginning of a walking track which winds along beside the rocky creek and up beside the waterfall itself. It’s all easy and pleasant, if not nearly as spectacular as Wallaman. In many ways it’s more comparable to Paradise Pool nearby: close to town and family-friendly.
I called in there for a break on my way back from Wallaman a couple of weeks ago and walked up to the lookout at the top of the track. My first photo is taken from there; the track doesn’t go as far as the top of the falls on the skyline.
I enjoyed Wallaman Falls so much last May that I returned last week. I introduced the Falls and the location quite fully last time and there’s no need to do it again, so this time I can focus on the walk down to the foot of the falls.
I didn’t tackle it last year but was more energetic this time and it was well worth the effort. The path from the Lookout runs for a few hundred metres along the edge of the escarpment then dives over the edge, zigzagging steeply through open woodland into rainforest and out onto the tumble of rocks at the bottom. Signs at the top warn that walkers need to be reasonably fit but it’s no tougher than (e.g.) the Castle Hill goat-tracks. Do take water, though, and expect the ascent to take an hour.
There are plenty of excuses to stop, if one wants to, because the constant spray encourages all sorts of growing things in the rainforest. There are lots of butterflies to watch, too, but the birds are more often heard than seen.
Signs beside the viewing platform at the bottom warn of the very real dangers of slippery jagged rocks and tell everyone not to venture further, but nearly everyone ignores them, clambering around for a better photo op. Some Darwin Award candidates even go for a swim; I guess most of them survive but they will need another swim anyway after getting back to the top.