Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sundown National Park

Sundown National Park is around 250Km southwest of Brisbane and comprises two sections, the North Eastern section is for 4WD's only while the South Western section is suitable for 2WD's.

Leaving Brisbane I travelled up over Cunninghams Gap and onto the Darling Downs passing several bushfires along the way.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The main highway leads you to Ballendean where you make the turn for Sundown
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The road wanders through private property before coming to the gate leading into Sundown National Park
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

I drove up to Red Rock Gorge and walked down to the lookout
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

I was treated to a magnificent red sunset over the gorge.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The small dam at the camping area was alive with several different frogs
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The camping area has a toilet but no fences ... great spot to spend the night :)
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Next morning i packed and after a bit of a walk around the place, headed out.
The track leads past the old Beacroft Mine which has been fenced off but allows a close up view of the shaft as it drops into the depths.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The cleared areas allow a fantastic view of the surrounding hills
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

This Prickly Pear was actually growing out of the top of an old fence post
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

I took the right fork and headed down the hill, the area used to host cattle so there are quite a few old yard left around
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The track stops at Reedy Waterhole and with the hot day and lukewarm water i couldn't resist a swim although the rocks are very very slippery.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

I backtracked then turned right and headed for Burrows Waterhole where i again jumped in for a swim.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

There are some nice shaded campsites along here right next to the Severn River.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

When i tried to climb the steep rutted hill towards Hell Hole i broke an engine mount and shorted out the fridge wiring so had to disconnect the battery and carefully reverse off the hill.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

I crossed towards Rats castle and found a shady spot to make some repairs.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

A ratchett strap around the chassis held the engine down as i had a fairly rough climb coming up as i neared Burrows Waterhole.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

We made it back up the hill and i stopped at the old yards on top of the hill to check over everything and have a look around.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

This Old Roo was not about to be moved along easily from his shady spot under the old watertank.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

On the way out of the park i took the "Lower Track" back to the park entrance, this track is much more interesting than the main "Upper Track"
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Sundown is a place where it is very cold in winter and very hot in summer but its good fun for a weekends camping and exploring.

The 2WD section:

After a day down at Southpoint i decided to check out the 2WD section at the south west end of Sundown National Park.

There is and old homestead and some old equipment just opposite the Ranger Station at the entrance to the park.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Not far away is the Broadwater Camping area and end of the track, I'm afraid the fenced in area doesn't really do it for me :(
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

I decided to take a walk and have a bit of a look around, the track followed the fence for quite a while.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

There was no water at all in Ooline Creek.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Permanent Waterhole on the Severn River still had plenty of water so i took the opportunity to have another swim.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Back at the campsite there is an old Donkey Boiler.
To operate you fill it to the top with water and light the fire under it then when its hot you pour some more water in the funnel and it flows out into the metal bucket which you then carry to the shower cubical and fill the shower head, then just hoist it up and your away. :)
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

I passed the old homestead again on the way out.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The campsite are all right beside the road so you would be getting pretty dusty so i would much prefer the 4WD section.
Still ... anywhere is better than sitting at home :)

4WD section:


2WD section:

2 comments:

Tony Morris said...

Hi there, I am interested to know, when you say that one end is for 4x4 and the other for motorcycles, is this an enforced rule, or are you just making a recommendation?

Also, do you have any GPS track logs?

aaron Slade said...

He said 4wd only on the northern side ( you would not be able to drive a standard car there) while the southern side is accessible by all cars ie standard 2wd cars.