Please note: you can find a more up to date version of this blog at

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Deception Bay

Read More

Deception Bay

I thought I’d ride out to Deception Bay this morning. To make it interesting I cut through North Lakes, and found a couple of dirt tracks at end of Discovery Drive, North Lakes, which helped me get there from the South-West without having to navigate some of the major roads in the area.

It’s Australia Day today and at the waterfront, all the BBQ’s and picnic tables were taken – even at 9am. I’m not surprised because it’s very pretty, with great views to Scarborough, Moreton Island and Bribie Island.

Deception Bay was initially named Pumicestone River” by John Oxley in 1823. When he realized it wasn’t actually a river, he named it “Deception Bay” instead.

Poor John Oxley had more than his share of “deception” in this area – being led up the North Pine River by shipwrecked convicts Finnegan and Pamphlett, who told him it was the Brisbane River. When he realized it wasn’t the Brisbane River, he named it “Deception River”, but “North Pine” river eventually stuck because of all of the Hoop Pines that grew along the river’s banks.

Deception BayDeception Bay

Dr Joseph Bancroft was doctor and scientist who settled in the Deception Bay area in the 1860’s.

He is famous for his studies in parasitology, but one of the more touching memorials in the area is “Mrs Bancroft’s Bath”.

His wife was diagnosed with an illness which doctors suggested could be mitigated by bathing in salt water. To make this easier for Mrs Bancroft, Joseph had a bath carved out of one of the large rocks on the foreshore. At high tide, the water would fill the bath, and Mrs Bancroft would be able to take her saltwater bath with ease.

As you can see from the picture, the bath is still there as a testimony to one man’s love and care for his ill wife.

Mrs Bancroft's BathMrs Bancroft's BathJoseph Bancroft

View Larger Map

Monday, January 25, 2010

Mount Coolum

Read More

Mount Coolum

Originally uploaded by MagicTyger

Mount Coolum was a good climb. It’s not as high as nearby Mount Ninderry, but it’s a more challenging climb because there’s more slippery rocks to negotiate.

I rode the bike down from Coolum Beach, chained it to a tree in the car park, and climbed from there.

There are spectacular views in all directions, but it’s not as panoramic as Emu Mountain. You need to move around the summit a bit to see in different directions.

Nevertheless, it’s quite high, and very close to the coast, so it’s worth having a look.

The track was quite busy. I passed about a dozen people when I climbed.

Mount CoolumMount CoolumMount CoolumMount CoolumMount CoolumMount Coolum

View Larger Map

Emu Mountain Again

Read More

Emu Mountain Again

I took the family up Emu Mountain yesterday so they could enjoy the view too.

For a small climb it really has great views.

Lill, our youngest, is seven years old, and she managed the climb easily in about 25 minutes, although we had to be a bit careful coming down.

One thing better than a great view is being able to share that view with others!

Emu Mountain AgainEmu Mountain Again

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Mount Ninderry

Read More

Mount NinderryMount NinderryMount NinderryMount NinderryMount Ninderry

Mount Ninderry is one of the first monoliths you see when you turn off the Bruce Highway at Yandina and approach Coolum.

It’s about 360m high with a car park about halfway up.

I’ve seen it dozens of times on our many trips to Coolum, and eventually decided to check it out.

I cycled there this morning, and hiked to the top for some great views of the the coast and farmland around Coolum.

Some of the hills were a challenge.

After the hike, I discovered the dirt part of Ninderry Road which is a steep horse trail leading down the north-eastern side of the mountain. It was a lot of fun on the mountain bike – although I took it pretty slowly.

Then it was an easy ride along mostly dirt roads back to the main drag and home.

All up about 43km with maybe 450m of ascending.

View Larger Map

Friday, January 22, 2010

Emu Mountain

Read More

I decided to do a quick climb up Emu Mountain yesterday afternoon. It’s a prominent hill just north of Coolum with great panoramic views in all directions, from Noosa in the north, to the Blackall Ranges is the west down to Coolum in the South.

I got lost in the first 5 minutes and ended up in the middle of a horse paddock. Some friendly horses ran up to great me, which was initially quite intimidating. But I just spoke to them like they were inqusitive kids, and they decided not to eat me and trotted off.

Here’s some of the pictures.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

Coolum to Noosa

Read More

Here’s some pictures from my ride from Coolum up to Noosa and back this morning. What a beautiful ride! Beach on one side, National Park on the other for most of the ride. I think I’ve found a few tracks that might be suitable for mountain biking, too!


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Revisiting Clear Mountain

Read More

The last time I tried to ride up Clear Mountain I ran out of puff near the top and had to push the bike to the top.

This time, with the help of Simon and Lachlan, we all made it to the top.

Many thanks to Steve for stitching my photos into a panorama.

Clear Mountain Panorama

King of the HillLachlan Reaches the Summit

View Larger Map

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Mt Nebo and Beyond

Read More

Our ride to Mt Nebo was a big one. We thought the climb up the mountain would be difficult, but it wasn’t. We thought the ride back down via Bellbird Grove and Camp Mountain would be easy, but it wasn’t. All up we travelled about 55km. I burned over 4,200 calories and drank copious quantities of sports drinks, and had a large “lunch” at about 10am at the Mt Nebo cafe.

Our total ascent for the ride was 1,437 metres (about 4,500 feet).

I just want to say how much I admire my mate Simon. This was the hardest ride he’s ever done, and he just kept going – even when he was hurting and didn’t really want to go on at one stage. Even when we should have given him a break and taken a quicker route back to Samford from Camp Mountain. Simon – you’re amazing, mate. This ride brought home to me the important lesson that we do this because it’s fun. We don’t do it to set world records, or to be heroes, or to win races. And when riding in a team everyone in the team needs to look out for each other. So that’s going to be my #2 rule in future, after riding safely.

Here’s some pictures:

Samford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove CircuitSamford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove CircuitSamford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove CircuitSamford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove Circuit

The Goat Track is a dirt road “short cut” from Samford to Mt Nebo. It’s one way – you’re only allowed to go UP the road, not down it. It’s pretty steep – but we overestimed the grade, and got up quite easily. The total climb up the track is just under 440m in about 5km.

Samford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove CircuitSamford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove CircuitSamford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove Circuit

Some of the route along South Boundary Road once we got to the top of the range

South Boundary Road was pretty difficult. The descents were rocky and the final ascent before rejoining the bitumen road is a killer. I had to walk part of the way because it was too steep.

Samford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove Circuit

Bellbird Grove was deserted – which was unusual for a Saturday lunch time. There’s no drinkable water there, but lots of picnic tables, BBQ’s and shade. We rested here before trying to attack the fire road up Camp Mountain, which leans down into the Samford Valley.

Samford / Mt Nebo / Bellbird Grove Circuit

One of the many pony trails in the Samford Valley. One way to avoid the cars, but at the end of a 55km ride, the trails were hard work!

Here’s the map:

View Larger Map