Horizon Guides Bush walks Winter-Spring 2020

HORIZON GUIDES: WINTER / SPRING WALKS 2020  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. us now to reserve your walks - spaces are filling fast ....

1 Secret Spring / Mt Maroon foothills. Moderate. Approx. 10km 5 - 6 hrs Car shuffle required

Sunday 2 August Cost: $65 pp

Description: Mt Maroon has many secrets and today we visit a sweet spring that runs tea-coloured clear all year round – even during the deepest drought. Most of our walk is through open forest and along the way vistas open out on to the peaks and valleys of the Mt Barney area. Being in the foothills the terrain is undulating so you can expect some short climbs and descents with rough ground underfoot. After a break at the Spring, we follow fire trails through the forest to the road near Mt Barney Creek.

2 Teviot Gap – off track walk. Approx. 8km 4 – 5 hours Challenging

Sunday 9 August Cost: $65 pp

Description: Tucked away in the upland forests of the Main Range are many places of rugged beauty and quiet peace. This little off-track ramble takes us to some of these places that you won’t find on a map. Shhhh …. don’t tell! Be prepared for steep ground, creek bed rock-hopping and no tracks.

3 Paddy’s Falls – Paddy’s Ridge Loop (Mt Barney NP) Moderate

WEDNESDAY 12 August Cost: $65 pp

Description: This off-track bushwalk walk extends a regular walk to Paddy’s Falls into a loop walk that takes in nearby ridges and features southwest of Mt Maroon. There are interesting cliff areas and magnificent views that you won’t see on a regular excursion into this area. NB We cross Mt Barney Creek near the trail-head at the start and finish of the walk.

Note: This trip will suit beginner bush walkers keen for an off-track adventure.

4 The Steamers (Main Range NP) 7 – 8 hrs Challenging (off track)

Sunday 16 August Cost:           $80 pp

Description: A two-hour drive (last bit requires SUV) brings us to the start of this walk however it’s worth the journey to visit one of the most dramatic geologic features in SE Queensland! The Steamers rise as steep cliff sections atop a ridge to the west of the Main Range NW of Mt Superbus. They are named the Prow, Funnel, Mast and Stern for their resemblance to a massive ship. The view from the western end of the Stern is one of the best in the region. There is not really any track so be prepared for steep climbs and rough ground with a section of steep scree as we head up on to the ridge and traverse the various features of the Steamers before returning by the same route.

NB The final section to the viewpoint off the end of the Stern involves an exposed and very narrow short section of ridge. Extreme care is required and this part is not recommended for those nervous of heights. The walk is still very rewarding without this final scramble.

5 Green Mountains Escarpment Trails Approx. 12kms / 5 – 6hrs Moderate

Sunday 30 August Cost: $65 pp

Description: Today we venture on to some of the almost-forgotten walks around Green Mountains and the O’Reilly’s Resort. The first section is along the familiar Border Track then we veer off to visit the historic Forestry Department Cairn. From here a faint old trail winds across the headwaters of Moran’s Creek and climbs steadily through magnificent stands of forest giants. (Keep an eye out for old track markers and signposts.) Nearing the dramatic escarpment that rises from the Albert River glimpses of the valley are gained at Lyrebird Lookout and Orchid Grotto Lookout. This section features many ancient Antarctic Beech trees. Moonlight Crag Lookout is the perfect lunch spot before we take more trodden paths to Moran’s Falls … and then the easy track to the café!

Mt Joyce Circuit, Wyaralong Dam. Moderate (steep climb to the summit!) Approx. 15.5km / 5 - 6 hours

WEDNESDAY 9 September Cost:           $65 pp

Description: Mt Joyce (Elevation 450m) offers one of the best views in the region! But it takes a bit of effort to get there … Starting at the Wyaralong Dam wall the Shoreline Trail brings us to the base of Grass Tree Trail, a steep climb up the ridge. Nearing the top we take a bush trail for the rest of the hike to the summit. This is a total elevation gain of around 300m. After enjoying the terrific view we descend initially down the way we came, then steeply down to the Ridgeline Trail. We can either turn left and head back to the start or take the side trip to Ngumbi Campsite before returning to the Trail Head.

Ivory’s Rock Circuit Hike. (private property, no general public access to walk) Moderate (steps and loose sections) Approx 9km / 5 hours  

Sunday 20 September Cost: $75 pp

Description: The prominent volcanic peaks near Flinders Peak are the focus of this intriguing circuit track at Ivory’s Rock Camping. Traversing up to the base and around the main peaks the trail gives access to wonderful views and many points of geologic interest as well as varying flora and fauna habitats around the cliffs and caves of the peaks. A must do!

8 Page’s Pinnacle Springbrook NP / SEQ Water Approx 10km 6 – 7 Hours Challenging

Proposed date Sunday 27 September Details to be confirmed

Hardings Paddock to Flinders Plum 19km 6 - 7 hours Moderate – mostly fire trail. Car shuffle required.

Wednesday 30 September Cost: $65pp

Description: Forming part of the Boonah to Ipswich Trail this nice long multi-use trail takes us south to the base of Flinders Peak. Many great view points and vistas along the way and plenty of ups and downs on wide graded tracks through the rugged landscape make this a satisfying day out.

10 Lever’s Plateau Rabbit Fence Walk overnight Moderate/Challenging 22km & 15km

COST $395pp (includes transport from Beaudesert, guide and driver, meals & accommodation @ Wild Mountains)

Saturday 3 /Sunday 4 October

Description: An overnight adventure along the historic Rabbit Board Fence! The first day begins in the foothills east of towering Mt Lindesay where we join the fence and walk a rollercoaster trail through many forest types with spectacular views. It’s a big day but carrying only a daypack makes it good leg stretch – of course, you will enjoy the day more if you are reasonable fit and have been hiking regularly.

Upon arrival at Wild Mountains we settle into our camp and relax around the fire until dinner, a short stroll away in the main hall.

Our second day begins with a shuttle back up to the Fence where the trail continues across Lever’s Plateau, passing by spectacular Long Falls then loosing altitude all the way down to the Lion’s Rd on the Qld/NSW Border. Our transport meets us here for the return to Beaudesert.

Special Notes:

- There are many sharp ascents and descents (no stairs) that may not suit a person with knee or other physical issues.

- Our personal overnight gear is transported to the bush campsite at Wild Mountains. You may take your own tent and mat or choose to stay in one of the shared basic canvas huts. Full details on enquiry.

11 Apple Tree Park to Purlingbrook Falls Trail Head (Springbrook NP) Approx 7.1km 5 – 6 hrs Moderate

Sunday 11 October Cost: $65 pp

Description: Today’s walk is the last section of the GC Hinterland Great Walk. Initially taking the power line easement for about 1km the track then drops down into the catchment of the Little Nerang Dam. After crossing Little Nerang Creek the track heads upstream up the side of a narrow gorge with pools and cascades cut into older rocks from beneath the ancient Tweed volcano. After 1km the track emerges at a basalt slab above the beautiful Warringa Pool.

The track continues on the other side of the creek to Purling Brook Falls, where a massive cliff of cream-coloured rhyolite, 100m high, looms over a deep gorge of black basalt. After crossing the suspension bridge, a steady climb brings you back to the top of the plateau. Just before crossing the top of Purling Brook, the track branches left to The Settlement camping area where we end our hike.

12 Girraween NP Camp

Sat 17 and Sunday 18 October Cost: $140 pp for two days guided walking (includes campsite fee)

Saturday: Mt Norman return including Castle Rock Approx 15km return. Full day.

Sunday: AM First Pyramid 3.4km return approx. 2½ hrs or Dr Roberts Waterhole and Underground Creek 3.5km return. Approx. 2½ hrs

NB ACTUAL walk program may vary.

Description: For a wildflower finale to the 2020 program we travel to Girraween NP near Stanthorpe for a camping and walking weekend. There are many walk options here and no matter what we do, the walking in this granite wonderland is sensational! The flora is spectacular, especially in spring and the bush is alive with birds and other fauna.

In 1930, after intense lobbying from local GP Dr Roberts, land was set aside to create Bald Rock NP for the protection of the Superb Lyrebird and the common wombat. Nearby Castle Rock NP was established in 1932. They were then known collectively as Wyberba NP. Further land acquisitions lead to amalgamation of these parks into Girraween (meaning ‘place of flowers’) NP and land additions continued until 1980 which enlarged the Park to 11, 800ha.

(The campsite at Bald Rock has already been reserved for our group) If you prefer not to camp there are accommodation options the closest being Girraween Environmental Lodge www.girraweenlodge.com.au (trouble is you may not want to go walking once you arrive here…) and there are also B&Bs not far away.

You will need to provide your own food and camping gear. More details, including transport arrangements will be advised closer to the date once we have a group assembled. NB There are good amenities here however showers are not available due to the ongoing drought.

For more background on Girraween go to www.epa.qld.gov.au and follow the links to Parks and Forests to select Girraween.

13 Full Moon Hike!! Mt Mattheson Trail – 8km Moderate. Approx. 5 hours 

Saturday 31 October Cost: $65 pp BYO dinner and snacks.

Description: There is nothing quite as magical as being in the bush as day gives way to the night – especially on a full moon! Mt Mattheson is a favourite circuit walk and one of the most diverse and historically interesting circuits on the Range. Starting at the Spicer’s Gap picnic area near the pioneer grave site the track climbs gradually through rainforest before coming onto a ridgeline of open eucalypt forest. From Mt Mattheson (752m) the track follows a sharp ridge with bird’s eye views of the Great Divide. Small volcanic cliffs add variety with ferns and orchids sheltering in their crevices. Turning southwest the track meanders through rainforest before opening out onto old logging tracks and joining the historic basalt-cobbled pioneer road. This takes us back to the start via the Governors Chair lookout where we will have dinner and watch the moonrise at 5.45pm. From here it’s about a 30-minute walk to the vehicles.

 We are looking forward to sharing these tracks with you this year! This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. us now to reserve your walks - spaces are filling fast ....

 

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SPRING CREEK MOUNTAIN TRAIL - 2021 dates coming soon

SPRING CREEK MOUNTAIN TRAIL

This walk is a beauty - following the Rabbit Board Fence for approximately 35km from near Killarney to the foothills of Wilson's Peak. There are views you might know well but from a refreshing new perspective - tracing the crest of the mountains allows an eagle-eye view - far better than those from a car seat. At an elevation around 1000m the days and nights are cooler than the valley making for great walking conditions.

There's a steep start but after this the open trail and mostly moderate gradients allow for relaxed walking and conversation. Rolling along beside the fence and passing through open forests and tall timbers, lush farmland and World Heritage Rainforest this trail is simply lovely.

 

DAY 1  

Walk:   Killarney Border Gate to Smith’s Farm Approx 12km. Moderate

Trans:  Ex Boonah. Transfer to walk start (approx. 115km)

            Transfer from Smith’s Farm to SCM Cottages

Accom: Spring Creek Mountain Café and Cottages

Meals:   LD

Nestled in the heart of the Scenic Rim, Boonah is where we meet before boarding our van for the drive across Cunningham’s Gap via the Settler’s Route to Killarney on the western side of the Main Range. After a break in Killarney we drive out of town to the starting point for this three-day walk along a section of the historic Darling Downs-Moreton Rabbit Board Fence. It’s a steep start, with a 300-metre elevation gain to crest the plateau! The track then eases into more rolling terrain through open Eucalypt forest with extensive views across Acacia Plateau and Koreelah into NSW and north Mount Colliery and the Condamine Gorge. The Fence traces the QLD-NSW Border passing through farmland and rainforest by turns.

Arriving at Smith’s Farm Mal – third generation farmer on this land - takes us to visit his favourite trees in the old growth rainforest on his property. From here it’s just a short drive to our accommodation. Situated at 1050m above sea level on the Great Dividing Range this lovely award-winning property perches above the Condamine Gorge with glorious views from the café across The Head to Wilson’s Peak and the World Heritage Rainforests of the Main Range.

DAY 2 

Walk:   Smith’s Farm to Spring Creek Mountain Cottages Approx. 13km Moderate

Trans:  SCM Cottages to Smith’s Farm

Accom: Spring Creek Mountain Café and Cottages

Meals: BLD

Birdsong replaces alarms this morning as we enjoy our first cuppa of the day with spectacular valley views. After a hearty breakfast and packing our lunch we head back to Smith’s Farm and re-gain the Fence. Today’s walk again follows the Fence over undulating country with ever-changing views bounded by lush pastures. Koreelah NP is our companion on the NSW side of the fence lending a rich green backdrop to the views.

After lunch the views open up spectacularly across the Head as we make our way through farmland and private rainforest to arrive back at Spring Creek Mountain Café and Cottages.

DAY 3 

Walk:   Spring Creek Mountain Cottages to the White Swamp Border Gate. Approx. 10km Moderate + challenging downhill section

Trans: Transfer to Boonah

Meals: BL

As we follow the fence in Queensland we can reach out and touch Koreelah NP in NSW. Established in 1999 the park covers 53 sq km. Its creek flats, steep hillsides and deep valleys support a rich variety of habitats from wet and dry Eucalypt forests to cool sub-tropical rainforests featuring Black Booyong, Yellow Carrabeen, Rosewood, towering Hoop Pines and Giant Stinging Trees. This World Heritage Park is also part of the Scenic Rim Important Bird Area, identified as such by BirdLife International. Over 110 bird species are found here including Alberts Lyrebird, Noisy Pitta and Wompoo Fruit Dove. The songs from the forest will be our sound track on the walk from here on.

After an hour or so of easy walking the plateau suddenly narrows as the volcanic cliffs of the escarpment become prominent. The fence dives off the edge but we leave it for a short distance to wind down to the Head Road, re-joining the fence at the Moss Garden. There is very steep decent here before easier ground is reached. There are a couple of climbs over forested knolls but overall we are now headed downhill and the rainforest gives way to tall Eucalypts. Views through the trees reveal the slopes of Mt Superbus and Head Road and signal that our walk is coming to an end. At the White Swamp Border Gate our van meets us for the trip back to Boonah but not before we share lunch and a cuppa nearby.

GUIDES

Teresa Cause based in Boonah, founded Horizon Guides Pty Ltd in 2007. Offering a specialised bushwalking guide service, Teresa has a background in outdoor and environmental education, with a particular emphasis on natural history.  Teresa's extensive guiding experience includes tours in Australia and overseas. 

She is also the proprietor of Far Outdoors in Boonah.

Chris White is based out in the foothills of the Main Range NP. She is a passionate bushwalker and loves nothing more than getting outside and hiking through the landscape. Chris has been a guest on many walks but this time she will be providing logistical support for the trip and joining us on the track where she can!

GENERAL TOUR NOTES:

Accommodation

Spring Creek Mountain Café and Cottages is a very well known and highly regarded destination. Bev Ruskey is the owner and host and we will receive a wonderful welcome as well as fine food and comfortable accommodation in one of three cabins. Each cabin has spectacular views and a wood heater. There is bathroom in each cabin. Two cabins have a queen bedroom and a double sofa bed. One has two bedrooms, one with a queen bed and the other with two singles, as well as a double sofa bed. Rooming arrangements will depend on the guest mix. For more information visit www.springcreekcottages.com.au

Packing List A detailed packing list will be provided upon receipt of a reservation and deposit for the walk.

Meals All meals and snacks are provided from lunch on the first to lunch on the last day. Every effort will be made to cater for special dietary needs.

Laundry With such a short tour there should not be the need to do laundry however it is recommended to pack a small amount of washing detergent for hand washing.

Alcohol At Smith’s Farm Camp we will provide wine/beer/non-alcoholic beverages for happy hour before dinner. If you prefer spirits (or more than a glass or two of your favourite tipple) then you may purchase this prior to the tour and bring it with you. Spring Creek Mountain Café is fully licenced with a good selection of beverages for you to purchase.

Daily briefings Each evening there will be a briefing on the walk or options for the following day as well as a re-cap at breakfast.

Mobile Phone Coverage There is adequate mobile phone coverage at some places along the walk. Emergency access via 112 is more available.

TRACK NOTES:

What do we carry? All you will carry is a daypack with personal items and your lunch. All other luggage etc is transported in the trailer with the van.

Distances and track section times The distance we cover is approximately 35km. We are travelling this pretty much all on foot unless the weather or other environmental factors prevent safe walking conditions. Where indicated the time taken for each section is approximate.

Grading Most of the track is graded Moderate. There are some more challenging sections where the gradient is steep. One of these is an ascent and the other a descent. Refer to daily notes for grading on each section.

Shortening walks. For those who don’t feel up to hiking on any given day you are more than welcome to travel in the van - one of the best aspects of a vehicle-supported walking holiday!

Toilets There are no toilet facilities during the day hikes. We follow Leave No Trace principles and these will be outlined to you at the beginning of the trip.

Track direction is from west to east taking a roughly northeast direction.

Weather Mountain weather can be quite changeable in the region. Unless conditions are particularly hazardous we will walk even in rainy weather. Make sure you have a quality rain jacket with a decent hood. July on The Head is renowned for being cold and frosty!

Steps There is quite a lot of ‘up and down’ on this walk and it may not be suited for anyone with knee conditions.

Hydration / Water It is recommended to carry 2 litres of water in 1litre containers per day.

Snakes and other fauna hazards Snakes are common the area but not often seen. Of more general concern are paralysis ticks that may be associated with such conditions as Lyme-like diseases. Preventing bites can be done by using a good repellent and avoiding sitting in loose leaf litter.

 

We are looking forward to sharing the Spring Creek Mountain Trail with you soon!

 

 

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Contact info

7 Church St, Boonah QLD 4310

Phone +61 07 54634 114
Mobile +61 0417 760 966

teresa@horizonguides.com.au

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