NPAQ Activity Report
Tooloona Creek Circuit 2020
Date: Saturday, 22 February, 2020
Under cloudy skies, nine walkers left O’Reilly’s. Soon, it was time to don rain gear as the forecasted showers eventuated. However, the rain did not dampen the spirits of the walkers; in fact, spirits were lifted as they passed through the flourishing rainforest. Creeks were negotiated with care as the walkers stepped gingerly across the wet slippery rocks and tried to avoid getting their feet wet in the flowing streams. However, squishy boots soon became the order of the day.
The above-average water flow made the waterfalls a delight. Water cascaded over the falls and rushed down the cataracts in a cacophony of sound that was music to the ear. Several Lamington Crays were seen on the track as they emerged from the flowing streams.
Reaching the escarpment, the many stands of Antarctic Beech Trees covered in “grandfathers beard” were bewitching as they emerged from the mists to the delight of the walkers. These same mists obscured the normally expansive views from the lookouts, so the hungry walkers ate quickly at Wanungara Lookout before returning to O’Reilly’s via the Border Track for a well-deserved cup of hot coffee.
N.B., This walk replaces the Coomera Circuit as the Binna Burra section of Lamington National Park is closed because of recent wildfires and the closure of the Binna Burra Road to complete upgrading works.
Description: One of the most picturesque tracks in Lamington National Park, the Toolona Creek Circuit passes through a giant box forest, several waterfalls and offers great views from scenic lookouts.
After crossing Picnic Rock above Elabana Falls, the track follows Toolona creek upstream past the magnificent Chalahn and Toolona Falls. Nearing the escarpment, there are stands of king fern (Todea barbara) and ancient Antarctic Beech trees (Nothofagus moorei). Following lunch at the Wanungara Lookout (Great views), the circuit returns via the Border Track through more stands of Antarctic Beech Trees with further views to Mt Warning from Bithongabel Lookout. Then it’s pretty well downhill to O’Reilly’s for a well-earned cup of coffee.
While the walk is on-track, there are a large number of creek crossings (expect to get your feet wet) and extended, moderate ascents. Expect rough surfaces with protruding rocks and roots as well as steep drop-offs. Walking boots are recommended.
Walk Grading: Intermediate. 18km – a good level of fitness is required.
Meet: O’Reilly’s Carpark by 8.00am for an 8.15am start.
What to Bring: Hat, light jacket, rain gear (just in case), insect repellent (leeches), torch, whistle, 2+ litres of water, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea, $5.00 NPA Fee.
Directions: From Brisbane, travel down the M1 to Beenleigh. Travel through Beenleigh and Tamborine Village on the Beaudesert Road. About 3-4km from Tamborine Village, turn left to Canungra. In Canungra, turn right opposite the Outpost Cafe, following the signs to O’Reilly’s. Allow 2 to 2 ¼ hours from Brisbane. Carpooling is encouraged.
Nominations: Via NPAQ Website or directly to the leader.
Frank Freeman 07 3824 3954; Email: [email protected]