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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Bunya Mountains National Park, QLD. Part 4: Eastern Rainforest Walks.

Eastern Rainforest Walks:

Bunya Bunya Track:
The Bunya Bunya Track is a Class 3, 500 m loop from the Dandabah picnic area at the end of Bunya Avenue.  There are lots of picnic tables, toilets, plenty of parking, a shop, a restaurant and a National Parks Office, where the rangers are very helpful.

Sculpture at Bunya Mountains National Park
Between the car park and the shops there is a sculpture with information posts around it. The sculpture of a hand, representing the rainforest reaching for sunlight, was installed in 2008 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the declaration of Bunya Mountains National Park. The information post: “Changing face of the bunyas” explains what can be seen at different times of the year proving that you will see something interesting no matter when you visit.

Seasonal Information about Bunya Mountains National Park
The Dandabah picnic and car park area is a great place to see Satin Bowerbirds, Crimson Rosellas, White-browed Scrubwrens and wallabies. Look along the bushy boundaries for Satin Bowerbird bowers. The park rangers are happy to point out the bowers if you are having difficulty locating them. Be careful when peering into the bowers not to brush your face or hands up against stinging nettle.

Wallabies at Dandabah
Crimson Rosella
Satin Bowerbird, female
Satin Bowerbird Bower, Dandabah Picnic Area
Stinging Nettle
On the walk itself we saw Bunya trees,wallabies and Superb Fairy-wrens.

Bunya Bunya Track
Wallabies sharing the Bunya Bunya Track
Superb Fairy-wren, male
Superb Fairy-wren, female

Scenic Circuit:

The Scenic Circuit is a Class 3,4 km return walk from Dandabah picnic area. Allow 1 hr 20 mins.This is a cool, damp, rainforest walk with rock pools, small waterfalls, hoop pines and bunya trees.


Hoop Pines, Bunya National Park
Rock Pool, Scenic Circuit, Bunya Mountains National Park
Bald at Pine Gorge Lookout
Tim Shea Falls
Scenic Circuit: Bracken Fern Understory
In December we were fascinated to see the huge tadpoles of the Great barred-frog Mixophyes fasciolatus in the streams as we walked the Scenic Circuit. The photo doesn't really give a sense of proportion but try to imagine tadpoles the size ordinary frogs.


Great Barred-frog Tadpoles
We walked right past this Eastern Water Dragon.


Eastern Water Dragon
The track goes through a magnificent strangler fig. Look up and you might be lucky to see the resident Sooty Owl high above you. For those interested in owls, Southern Boobook roost and hunt at night in Burtons Well Campground.


Strangler Fig
Sooty Owl
In the forest we saw Black-faced Monarchs, Eastern Whipbirds, Rufous Fantails and Crimson Rosellas. When we were almost back at the starting point we saw a beautiful Rose Robin, a first for us.
 
Rose Robin

Barker Creek Lookout is a Class 3, 5.4 km return walk. Allow 2 hours.
Park at the Paradise car park and walk to Barker Creek Lookout and return. We cut the walk short and turned back at Little Falls because it was our intention to do the full 10 km Barker Creek Circuit walk on another day.When camping, plans often go astray and we haven’t done the full circuit yet.

Paradise Falls
Little Falls
Feather on Barker Creek Lookout Track

Map of the Bunya Mountains National Park walks:
http://www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/bunya-mountains/pdf/bunya-mtns-map.pdf

For information about the Western Walks please see our previous blog:
http://nationalparkodyssey.blogspot.com.au/2014/10/bunya-mountains-national-park-qld-part.html

Russell Park is an excellent walk just outside Bunya Mountains National Park which we will cover in our next blog.


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