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Saturday, July 20, 2013

Ocean View

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Down down down...

We didn’t want to stray too far from home today, so I took my friends on an exploration of my “back yard” starting from the railway station down the road, and riding up into the mountains at Ocean View (near Mount Mee) before rolling back to Burpengary to catch the train. I love rides like this because it reminds me how lucky I am to live in such a beautiful place. Even though we might sometimes drive a few hours to explore a place on the mountain bikes, it’s reassuring to prove the old proverb that there is no place like home.

Lake Kurwongbah

Lake Kurwongbah

Lake Kurwongbah

We started off riding along the shoreline at Lake Kurwongbah. As if on cue, as soon as I started taking pictures, these rowers appeared out of nowhere. Don’t you just love days like that?

Lake Samsonvale

From there we headed for the shoreline of Lake Samsonvale and rode a few of the trails there. It’s quite hilly under the power lines, so we stopped for a rest at the top of the hill to enjoy the great view of the D’Aguilar Range to the west.

Dunlop Lane

This led us to one of the more historic trails in the area. “The Old North Road” was used here in the 1840′s by the Archer Brothers as a way of getting from Nundah near the Moreton Bay Settlement to Durrundur Station, near present day Woodford. It was based on an old Aboriginal pathway used for generations by people who walked from Meanjin (what we call “Brisbane” today) to the Blackall Ranges (near present day Maleny). These days, an un-built gazetted road, Dunlop Lane, follows the parts of this route. It’s a popular trail for horse riders.

Raynbird Road

As we slowly made our way in a north-westerly direction towards Ocean View, the hills grew steeper, and the climbs became more challenging…

Mountain View Road

Eventually we reached the major climb of the day – Mountain View Road. What a big hill!

Mountain View Road

Photos don’t do it justice, but even Eric and Jason (both very strong hill climbers) had to walk bits of it. I did too. :)

The Glasshouse Mountains

Lunch at Ocean View

We had a well-earned lunch at the top of the hill in a picnic area. In whatever direction we looked we were treated to great views.

Townsend Road

After lunch we continued north towards our next point of interest – the source of the Caboolture River. This river starts as a mountain stream in the rainforest at Ocean View. I thought it would be interesting to check it out.

Waterfall - Upper Caboolture River

The Upper Caboolture River

(Photo: Eric Dousi)

As we made our way along the track the sound of rushing water echoed through the trees. It wasn’t until we were almost right on top of it that we found the Caboolture River pouring over a waterfall.

The Upper Caboolture River

It looked impressive but we couldn’t find a place to cross the river at this spot, so we made our way back up the hill to try and find a way above the waterfall.

Ferny Forest

It was a bit of a circuitous route through fern covered gullies…

Barbed Wire Fence

…along barbed wire fence lines…

River Crossing

… and over more river crossings…

Ocean View

… until we finally made our way out of the thick bush and back onto the edge of the mountain range on Dean Drive. We’d paid our taxes in advance to the gravity gods, and so now we were able to enjoy an intense descent back down the hill.

Down down down...

We took one last view at the panorama looking east towards Moreton Bay, and started the downhill run. This was one of the steeper tracks I’ve ridden down. To maintain control, I hung my backside out over the back wheel as far as I could. So far, in fact, that it was almost touching my rear tyre. But I survived the descent and was able to stay on the bike.

Sheep Station Creek

Sheep Station Creek

As we reached the bottom of the range, it started raining quite heavily. We adjusted our route to get back to Burpengary Station as quickly as possible, shaving a few kilometres from our original route. We were still able to enjoy a quick (but wet) ride through Sheep Station Creek.

Home Train

We eventually made it to the train with about 15 minutes to spare, having ridden almost 70 km in seven hours. We climbed almost 1,800 metres and I burned about 3,500 kcal.

I’m rating this one 8.5 out of 10 on the tough-o-meter. The climb up Mountain View Road was tough. It was quite difficult bashing through the rainforest to get across the Caboolture River. The descent back down the range was challenging as well – not for beginners.

Thanks to Rebecca, Eric, Paul and Jason for a great ride through my back yard!

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