Gavin packed me up again with all his bushwalking gear, and as we went out the front door, the rain was coming down. We surely aren’t going out in this?
Andy arrived and off we wet on the next adventure. I heard Gavin and Andy discussing that usually it can be rainy in Deception Bay, but the weather can be alright on Mount Mee. But…the rain intensified as we neared Mount Mee…is this a big mistake.
Upon arrival at The Gantry Day Use Area, it was drizzly. That’s not so bad. A table was set up under the old gantry where it was dry and arrivals could sign in. I am surprised how many actually arrived! One person did however sign in and then went home.
At the time of departure, a few more turned up bolstering our numbers to 13. So then it was pack into the car the wanted walking gear, and collect what will be needed for a wet walk.
The walk crossed the road to the trail head in the rainforest, and the track initially paralleled the Piccabeen Circuit, until its western point at which the Somerset Trail continued on its western direction. Just past this point, was a track junction, which was the actual circuit. Turning right, following the arrows the track entered wet sclerophyll forest, and at this stage the rain had stopped. Good! I am getting soaked. Alright! alright! I am a water bottle. I am meant to get wet!
The track then crossed Lovedays Road and traffic had to be contended with, but we crossed with safety. Continuing along the track in this section descended into the last hoop pine plantation on Mount Mee. Gavin mentioned that the first time he walked around here with the club, these trees were about 1-2 metres tall. Now they are getting on to 10 metres tall.
The track followed an old forestry track through the hoop pine plantation and then skirted the edge of the plantation before leaving the plantation and entering a dry sclerophyll forest with its upper storey of eucalyptus trees, a lower storey of banksias, which were in flower, leptospermum, which were close to flowering, black wattle, and other small plants. With the clean air and the rain the flowers were impressive.
The track was ascending gradually to Somerset Lookout, and after another 3 km reached this lookout, passing interesting rock outcrops. The view however was in whiteout, with only the top of the cliff visible. Gavin said to imagine that down here is Somerset Dam.
Due to the rain, which had increased, it was decided to continue the 6 km back to the day use area and sit in the dry. The track from here descended to a creek crossing with a quaint waterhole. Gavin said that usually the Giant River Frog tadpoles are in this waterhole, but none were seen. The track then ascended to gain a ridge and then wound its way back to the junction of the circuit, where Gavin asked if anyone was interested in going around again.
Returning to The Gantry Day Use Area after about 14 km, everyone dived to their cars and got their lunches, or departed. While sitting having lunch, the sun came out. And so once it was finished, Gavin changed into dry clothes and he and Andy left for home. Gavin left me to dry off normally, and when we got home placed me in the sun. Aaah! That was nice, but before long the water got quite warm and made me uncomfortable.
So another water bottle adventure is over…