Adventure outdoors in winter
NOW the weather has turned a little cooler it is a perfect time to explore the Blackdown Tableland National Park.
Whether your interest is in bush walking, photography, 4WDing or camping, there is something for everyone.
At the entrance of the park is Yaddamen Dhina, the Horseshoe Lookout, which provides sweeping views of distant ranges and plains 500 metres below.
The lookout provides a perfect photo opportunity at any time of day, however if you are really keen, the view at sunrise is spectacular with the sandstone cliff seemingly changing colour as the sun rises (fog permitting). It is a good spot to stop for a picnic with barbecues, toilets and tables.
One of the most popular walks is to Gudda Gumoo (Rainbow Waters). It is a four kilometre round trip, with over 240 stairs but the view is well worth the effort.
The trail takes visitors into the gorge and to the base of a 40 metre waterfall. The waterfall is spring fed so will always have some flow. It also has a catchment so the flow will be at its fullest after rain.
In the right conditions a rainbow can be seen reflected in the spilling water. The rock pools make enjoyable swimming in warmer weather.
The Goon Goon Dina trail is dubbed the culture circuit as it takes visitors to a Ghungalu art site. Ghungalu descendants share their culture and language with visitors through signs and stories throughout the park.
There are six trails in total, each with their own beauty and features to discover.
For 4WD enthusiasts there is a 19 kilometre loop road which takes you to the Mitha Boongulla lookout for great views of the surrounding plains. It is suggested that the loop will take one and a half hours to complete and is suitable for high clearance 4WDs only as the road is rough.
Make a weekend of it by taking your tent or camping trailer and stay in the Munall camping area. The spots are secluded, peaceful, shady and close to the walking tracks. Take a torchlight to look for nocturnal birds and animals including gliders, owls and insectivorous bats.
The camp ground has limited facilities including composting toilets, log seats and individual fire rings, so you will need to plan ahead and bring everything you need including water and firewood. A camping permit is required through Queensland National Parks.
Due to its isolation, plants and animals found nowhere else flourish at Blackdown Tableland, including the Rainbow Falls callistemon, the Blackdown stringy bark and two varities of Blackdown wattle.
Keep your eyes open for the Blackdown "monster”, an underground cricket-like insect which surface after rain. On warm summer evenings you may also come across a rare Christmas beetle.
For further information contact the Central Highlands Visitor Information Centre.
The Blackdown Tableland turn-off is located 11 kilometres west of Dingo along the Capricorn Highway.