Sunday, September 12, 2010

Lamington National Park - Road Trip Into Queensland

We got an offer that we simply could not reject - a long weekend in Lamington National Park at O'Reilly's; good food, fantastic walks, great birds and exceptional company - yes, I really like my tent, the cous-cous camping dinners and even the solitude, but once and a while it is nice to be spoiled and "yes" cous-cous is great for camping, but to be honest my admiration of this tight packing carbohydrate is not so much due to its gourmet qualities - I would survive a weekend without! ;-)

Lamington National Park is located just north of the Queensland-New South Wales border. Knowing that we would have the luxury of running water et al. all of the weekend, it seemed appropriate to rough it a bit getting there - Driving the Magna is obviously always a joy, but 12 hours seems to be the point where even a good thing becomes slightly tiresome. To optimize our time up north, we left Sydney Wednesday afternoon straight after work and by bringing the tent and a bit of gear, we managing to bite the trip into two. There is a good selection of campsites close to the highway, so we pushed on until around 9pm, used about 30 min to get to a campsite and managed to clock up a healthy 8 hours of sleep before we hit the road again.

After all that driving I cannot help getting a bit jittery, luckily check-in at O'Reilly's went pretty smoothly and my companion agreed upon a quick 30 min dash into the rain forest. It was great using the legs a bit after the long drive and it did not take long before we had seen Yellow-throated Scrubwren and zoomed in on a little Logrunner family doing some excavation on the forest floor. Luckily I had brought the charger for the camera this time, because those rain forest are indeed very dark and can take a lot of flash. It was getting proper dark and we retreated to what should prove to be one of the best wildlife spotting locations of the weekend - the terrace of our rented apartment.

Pademelons in the field down below - at least until the arrival of a hungry looking dingo - bird darting around in the rain forest trees, that had conveniently been places centimeters away from the boundary of the terrace. As night fell the rest of our weekend companions arrived, just in time to see the influx of the nightly creatures of the forest - lured in by the light, an army of the most fantastic insects arrived and I was very happy, that I had brought the macro lens. The weekend had hardly started and it was already looking exceptionally exciting :-)

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