6. Sunshine Hinterland
To the North of Brisbane, the Glasshouse Mountains stand up out of the middle of the farming country, plantation forests and natural bushland. They were named the glasshouse mountains because in the sunlight they reminded an early explorer of glasshouses in appearance.
There is a lookout at the top of Mt Beerburrum, to the south of the Glasshouse mountains. From the end of the gravel access road, a sign marks the summit as being a 700m walk. It is however quite steep. After my climb in hot and humid conditions, I can say that it is a very long feeling 700 metres. There is a concrete path right to the top, but it is steep. As long as you're not on a tight time budget, the climb is worth it though.
The Glasshouse Mountains Road goes past the mountains to the East, but for a better look, there are a number of other roads in the area, running roughly on a North/South - East/West grid. There is a signposted lookout out to the West with a good view over the landscape, and the two parallel roads to the North of the destinctive Mt Tibrogragan are good for scenery. This next picture was taken from Coonowrin Rd, which extends Westwards from the Glasshouse Mountains township.
To the North of the Glasshouse mountains there are a number of interesting an pretty spots. The township of Montville looks all made up for the tourists, but is set well up on the mountain ridge. Just to the north of that is the Kondilla Falls. It's a bit of a walk to get there, and somewhat longer to do the full circuit track. they are pleasant falls above a swimmable rock-pool. I was on short time budget, so didn't try jumping in the water. I just took a few photos instead and tried the effect of different exposure times.
A little further to the North is the small township of Mapleton, which is complete with some Lily ponds. Turning from there out to the west, you can reach Mapleton falls. This is a quite tall waterfall, and there is a lookout just at the top of the falls (right at the carpark). It's quite spectacular to look down over the escarpment and hear the water fall below you, but you don't really get much of a view of the falls themselves.
|Lily pond, Mapleton|
Continuing West along Obi Obi Road from Mapleton falls, I came across a steep winding section of road. Each direction is split into different roads, and at the time of writing, the westbound (downhill) section was unsealed. It makes for a great drive as it winds its way down the hills.