Leader - Colin
Total Distance walked – 19.1k.
I had always wanted to do this walk in reverse (anti-clockwise) so as to have a much shortened “boring bit” along the border track back to O’Reilly’s.
As the club GPS device did not work last time because of cloud and canopy cover, Michele had kindly loaned me hers to test on this circuit as the terrain was much different to Stanthorpe where Gary and Michele had first used it. I am glad to say the device worked exceedingly well and a continuous track was maintained. This time I took the opportunity of setting a few waypoints as I went to allow me to plug in photos I had taken along the way and to compare with the GPS coordinates stored in the camera. Alas, my camera stored few (an indicator that it can’t find the satellites) and many were erroneous. So from memory I plugged in a few photos into what I thought were the correct waypoints.
We walked swiftly out to Toolona Lookout and made it in good time for Smoko. The sun was trying to squeeze through occasionally so the views over the valley were the best I have seen in a long time. None of us having walked counter-clockwise before the perspective was completely different so we had to be aware of where we were.
After Smoko we slowed down somewhat to make the most of what was coming up – some of the most spectacular (and plenty of them) waterfalls in Lamington National Park. We had Lunch just beyond Toolona Falls and we were all ready for it so stayed some time relaxing and enjoying the tranquillity. After that it was me slowing the party down as I was determined to get as many waterfalls into my camera as I could. There were a few I had never seen before so a trip back just for a photo shoot is a must. I commented to Paul that I was disappointed to see the last waterfall (how many do you need he said), as now it meant we were on the climb out. We all thought the climb out and the walk back was very comfortable as we knew we had not far to go.
I do believe this is a much better way to do it as we also managed to exchange pleasantries with all the walkers going in the opposite direction.
We enjoyed strawberry milkshakes and refreshments at Canungra before departing and heading back to Mt Tamborine, and for me - Upper Coomera - Colin.