Well here it is a day late, sorry about that but I got rather caught up in learning to bezel Rivoli’s and create flowers which I will post about tonight, but this is the promised post about my trip.
So on Friday Mum and I work up early ready to be picked up for our car trip, with Sonia and Eddie. It was a bit of a long trip up to Undara but it was broken up by Geocaching stops as well as a few fuel stops and lunch, where we stopped at Herveys Range Heritage Tea Rooms that are apparently 150 years strong and had a tasty lunch, though there was a bit of a wait as it was understandably a popular stop.
Eventually we made it to Undara after slowing down for Emus, cows and having to follow one car issuing smoke and weaving all over the road, to our concern. It continued on regardless and we turned off. I was the only one of us who had been to Undara before in 2012 when I had been on a road trip around the north of Queensland by my self between jobs and was excited to be back as the others were excited to visit for the first time. And this time I was sharing a renovated train carriage with mum. It was fantastic, with the luggage racks still in place, and old fans left in as decoration. Our carriage had is own bathroom and small lounge room.
After a long day we went up to dinner and sat in another converted train carriage for dinner, snagging one of the covered booths. Given how remote Undara is and covid-19 restrictions the menu was rather limited but the lava cake for desert was fantastic. The staff were all super friendly and helpful. All in all it had been a good day.
We were up early for another day, and a camp breakfast in the bush. I had tea boiled on the fire and a hot camp breakfast that we ate sitting on a felled tree and had logs planted in the ground in front of us for individual tables. Mum chose to sit in front of the toasting fire so I ended up helping several people to toast their fires with some advice on where to hold their toast and letting them know if their toast was cooked before they went through the effort of lifting it up to look.
After breakfast we were off on our adventures for the day. First up we went to the Kalkani Crater Rim Walk. A dormant volcano that last exploded less than 20,000 years ago according the information board at the base of the crater. It was a fairly easy walk up, and we spotted several kangaroos and other macropods on the way up. It was great to be able to walk all the way round the rim at the top and view several other volcanos that fell into two categories of volcano. The landscape was stunning though the wind was relentless.
On the way back to the outback resort, we stoped to find a few more geocaches after having grabbed the info for an earth cache on the rim. One of which involved another small hill climb. When we got back to the Undara retreat we took another short walk to a plato. I was interested to find a plaque that announced that Sir David Attenborough launched Undara Wilderness Management for Undara Lava Lodge Bush Resort on 05 October 1991. He is a hero of mine, as his documentaries have been apart of my childhood and beyond.
After that it was almost time for lunch and we sat kookaburra watching and joking because one had stollen part of Eddies breakfast that morning. There wasn’t a lot of time after lunch because we were booked in for not one but two tours, and had to get ready for the first one to begin. It turns out that our first tour was the Archway tour that I had done on my last trip but it was still a great experience doing it again and I learnt a little bit more about the caves as our tour leader was very knowledgeable about the caves and their history.
The lava tubes are a fantastic natural phenomenon, that are just mind blowing. Created by slow moving lava they are huge and you walk on a boardwalk down in to the darkness where you find out that the tubes were made from not just one eruption but from several, each carving out a new layer and leaving ‘tide’ marks. But not only that, as the tubes are in sections, with some parts open to the elements, there are small pockets of forest in the dry savanna wilderness.
We got back to camp for a small rest and were then off for the sunset tour, where we spotted wildlife along the way to a small walk to a hilltop where we enjoyed bubbly and nibble as the sun set, that was rather muted by clouds.
We were on the road again, stopping at Mount Hypipamee Nation Park, in the rainforest where we walked to a water filler crater and glimpsed a waterfall through the trees. It was a lovely rainy day, so not really good for adventures. Still we made our way to Atherton and the Gem shop on a mission for my aunt for a geod stone. I got to crack it open in the shop and mum and I brought a few things for our selves. Of course in Atherton we also did some geocaching and Mum was in need of coffee so we stoped in to a Raw cafe where I got a great chia late.
Then it was off to Gallo Dairyland for lunch, cheese and chocolate. It is a very busy place and you should book, because it is worth the stop. if you haven’t visited a working dairy then go so you can view the 3pm milking, while I didn’t bother having visited farms in my youth the others enjoyed watching the process. We stayed at Tinaroo Sunset Retreat for the night and ventured out for a few more caches before night fall.
We were provided with a great breakfast before the long drive home. If you are ever in Cardwell then I recommend Brearley’s Bakery for pies and pastries swans that you can eat at the ocean side. We stopped off at a lookout and then it was the rest of the long drive home. It had been a jam packed four days.
Lou, without the help of cats.