The group met at the Yandina Ginger Factory on Saturday July 22 at 0900. It was a beautiful cool clear morning which gradually warmed to a perfect day for a fun drive. This is a special place as our club is only one of two 4wd ckubs allowed in the area. The plan was to make the falls and have a picnic lunch there.
We had a great turnout, 11 cars, 3 of them guests checking out the club. Thanks to Rob Manglesdorf, our very capable trip leader, and everyone else who pitched in to the fun.
Jim Deakin, Ben Schottlander with Finn and Izzy, Kevin O'Sullivan, Brad Taylor, Dave Ringsell, Nigel Botham, Rob Manglesdorf, Jen and I.
A very special welcome to prospective members Fran Murdoch, Gary Hoger and Matthew Kierel.
We took off with Rob in the lead and me at the tail eating everyone's dust. Not too far in we hit a steep bump that tried to dislodge everyone's tow hitches and plugs. No reported damage but there was plenty of crunching. The drive was shaping up nicely with some fun steep climbs, technical gully's and quickly escalating into some challenging climbs. I knew the tracks were getting tougher just by looking at Jens white knuckles!
The guys up front found an old fridge on the track. They reported it was full of cold beer which they managed to drink before I rolled in from the rear. In the same area we found a fallen tree across the track which the boys buzzed through and cleared the way.
We had a stop at a creek in a gully with nice swim holes and interesting rock formations. Definitely a place to come for a picnic in the future. Jim has marked the map.
A while further in we came across a hard left turn, deep drop and fairly deep ruts leading into a watery mud hole. I called it "Devils Gulch". It was slow and careful tire placement with plenty of coaching from the sideline. Then, not much further up, we hit the wall. Well, it looked like a wall to me. I thought Hell's Gate" would be appropriate. After much consulting and discussion we decided to turn back. However, Rob had a mighty go at it but the base was just too loose with deep rubble offering no traction. We felt that persisting would scour up the track and risk damage to our rigs.
Now the fun began. Having turned around further back, I was now at the front. We approached Devils Gulch and quickly found out there was no way up freestyle! I had to be winched up, over and around.
Then I turned around and eventually winched up nine cars, Dave winched up one from another angle. Kevin, a man with no fear, had a try at the hard way up. No go but it was hilarious to watch! Note that he was the only vehicle who made it up the gulch unassisted. It was a great winching clinic and many of us learned a lot about safety and technique. It's reassuring to know the club has such a high standard of care, safety and experience.
Around 1330 we arrived at the alternative destination, Point Glorious and had lunch in the warm sun with those glorious views.
From there, off the the Mapleton Pub for the much anticipated and mandatory rehydration process. A few beers were downed while recounting our day's events. Then air up and off home around 1700. We hope that our guests enjoyed the day and decide to become part of the family!"
Friday morning Rob and I met on the highway and headed down to Beenleigh were we caught up with Paul & Catherine then we headed out to Canungra.
Arriving at Camp at about 12.00 we met Deno from the Gold Coast club who had just arrived.
We set up camp and chatted to the many members from both clubs as they rolled in over the afternoon. From our club we were joined by Nigel & Danielle then Brad & Sam soon followed by Barry and Stef.
Happy hour started early and by night fall our camp ground was overflowing and I knew we were in for a happy weekend.
Friday night we headed to the Canungra Pub for dinner then back to camp to enjoy the fire in between showers.
Saturday morning after breakfast with the sun out we decided to head to O’reillys for the morning while the tracks dried out.
After a very slow and windy drive up the mountain we made it to O’reillys where morning tea was had by with a great view of the valley below. After a feed and coffee we did the tree walk with a climb up to the platform at the top of one of the trees. This was a special treat for Paul who never stopped smiling.
With the morning gone we headed back down the mountain to Canungra and to camp were we quickly got organised for an afternoon drive which was a lot of fun and a challenging creek climb up over a rock ledge and some serious angles in the narrow creek.
As the afternoon was nearly done we headed back to camp for happy hour and to get our camp ovens going with the two clubs contributing to a great communal dinner and some yummy deserts.
With the fire cranked up it was time for some games with 2 members from each club volunteering. If Catherine and Paul knew what was to come they might have said no.
The game was called fluffy bunny with the aim to see just how many marsh mellows you could put in your mouth while saying fluffy bunny each time you put another one in your cheeks. Now you can’t chew or swallow them and for those that were there you know how funny this was to watch as Catherine tried not to laugh every time Paul attempted to say fluffy bunny. The Gold Coast won the first round and then the second as Stef and myself played next but after 10 and 13 respectively we were out and our hosts were the winners again. (We need to practice this for next time)
All I can say is don’t eat desert before you play this game as the sugar hit is amazing.
The rest of the night was spent around the fire with many laughs and enjoying each other’s company.
Sunday morning we had bacon and eggs for breakfast then headed out for another drive. This time to the highest point on the property which included a couple of recoveries and then we were treated to a fantastic view across to the other farms in the valley.
On the way down we stopped in to help the owner of the property to hang a gate. While there he asked if one of us could take his quad bike back down to the farm house, well you didn’t need to ask me twice and I quickly gave the keys to Catherine to take my car back to camp.
After getting down the steepest part i stopped so that Paul could jump on as well. Now this quad had next to no brakes and the steering wasn’t much better, but still a lot of fun.
Chris from the GC Club picked us up at the house and gave us a lift back to camp via a fun side track then we had lunch did the pack up and after saying goodbye to our hosts headed home.
Big thanks to everyone from the Gold Coast Club for another great weekend and I look forward to our next trip together.