Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Chaelundi, Washpool and surrounds

Wow, it's been a week since my last blogging so I feel like I've got so much to tell! I'll have to keep this fairly brief though.

Hand-cut tunnel on old Glen Innes - Grafton Road

A quick synopsis of my travels after New England :

 - Drove through Guy Fawkes River NP to camp at Chaelundi.
 - Continued up the old Grafton-Glen Innes Road, camped at Mann River rest area.
 - Hung around Washpool/Gibraltar Range for a couple of days (camped at Coombadhja Ck in Washpool)
 - Visited and camped at Basket Swamp NP.
 - Went through Stanthorpe and Warwick and camped at Koreelah Ck.
 - Spent some time at Mount Barney.
 - Camped at Sheepstation Creek in the Border ranges.
 - Drove through Rathdowney, past Lake Moogerah, visited Spicer's Gap and the Governor's chair before settling down for the night at Goomberah, Main Range.

Some highlights from the first part of this trip.

Just as I thought my luck in seeing cool animals had to come to an end, I saw yet another L. subglandulosa at Chaelundi, as well as a sugar glider, and best of all, a tiny, adorable, agile, hyperactive feathertail glider! I was able to watch it for some time as it fiddled around in a tea-tree right near the creek. The next day I tramped out to Lucifer's Thumb (Chaelundi bluff) where I spotted a Rock wallaby basking in the morning sun on the rocks below the cliff. Also in the macropod world, there were big mobs of wallabies on the old winding road to Glen Innes - wallabies that looked very strange to me, pale, grey with strange markings on their backs and long tails. A quick look in the book identified them as Whiptailed Wallabies. Frogging at Mann River only revealed common species though a pretty brown treesnake (Boiga irregularis) was a treat.

Whiptailed Wallaby

The snakes were also out on the Washpool walk - I saw a big black snake which made me jump as it shot off into the bush from a sunny patch on the track in front of me. Another snake I didn't get a good look at, though I suspect it was a rough-scale.

Falls at Washpool

I've had some great refreshing swims in the creeks along the way - the water has been much warmer than it was up at New England. I swam in the river at Dalmorton, twice (evening and morning) at Mann River, and again at Basket Swamp Falls. Koreelah Creek near Warwick looked a bit too chilly for me though.

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