National Park Experience - Summer 2022 - National Parks Association of Queensland

    ABN 60206792095
    NPAQ acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the Queensland National Park Estate and strongly supports co-stewardship with Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service.

    Patron: Her Excellency the Honourable Dr Jeannette Young AC, PSM Governor of Queensland

National Park Experience – Summer 2022

Author: Samantha Smith

Photography: Supplied

One of my favourite day trips as a child was to go to Tamborine Mountain. The magic of the rainforest walks and natural beauty of the area always captivated my imagination and made me feel like I was entering a secret place from a fantasy novel. In many ways, I still have that same feeling now when I visit.

I remember on our drives up the mountain we would turn off any music and wind down the car windows to smell the fresh air and listen to the birds in the forest around the road. The views even from the car window are fantastic and there were always a number of small waterfalls next to the road in some places after rain.

One of my families favourite places to go on Tamborine when I was younger was of course, Gallery Walk. The foods, gemstones and local crafts always had me spending most, if not all of my pocket money! Sometimes we would stop at Thunderbird Park on our way home for ice cream and a swim in Cedar Creek. I’m fairly sure it was searching for thunder eggs in Thunderbird Park that started my love of minerals and gemstones.

As an adult I still enjoy Gallery Walk however, it’s the rainforest walks and the chance they provide for me to practice my photography that I most enjoy now. With waterfalls, stunning views, unique wildlife and ancient trees in one area, what more could an amateur photographer want?!I love to visit all the walks on the mountain, of which there are many. One of my favourite walks is the Cedar Creek Rock Pools.

The major appeal is of course the natural rock pools at the bottom of the walk where you can picnic and go for a refreshing swim. Being a marine scientist I’m always fascinated by aquatic life, both flora and fauna. Some of the pools at Cedar Creek have some really interesting types of algae (picture below) and shrimp living in them along with what I believe are flecks of ore suspended in the water.

I also enjoy going for an evening walk at Curtis Falls with hopes of photographing some animals that aren’t usually out during the day or when there are lots of people. I also love to look at the glow worms sprinkled along the trail edges. They’re difficult to see but if you look hard enough there are hundreds tucked away in the walls.

Whilst each walking trail in Tamborine National Park are great, I believe it is the variety of ecosystems and contrasts between walks that make the area truly unique and special. Once you’ve been to Witches Falls and seen the diversity of the plants and animals, it’s not hard to see why this area was chosen as the first national park in Queensland in 1908.

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