Another early start, but a more reasonable at 8am vs 6.30am pick up from Gilligans by Linzi who is our guide for the day on Uncle Brians and is really nice and entertaining. Good at integrating with the group and getting everyone to know each other by playing some games through the day and having plenty of tea/coffee and lunch breaks so everyone chats.
First stop we walk through the rainforest and Linzi points out some of the key plants, such as one called Wait Awhile, which is vine with spikes on it that uses them to hook onto other plants to help it grow and pull it up to the top of the canopy. It is pretty sharp and if it catches you as you walk past, especially if going fast, it will easily cut you as feel likes a serated knife. Ouch. Other plants she mentions is one called Gimpie-Gimpie (aboriginal for pain) or known as the stinging leaf and it looks a like a heart. This is very poisonous and apparently the most unbearable pain ever. As we keep walking though the forest, we see a few large Golden Orb spiders, which seem to be everywhere in Cairns.
Eventually we get to Boulder Creek, which is really cool to see the power of the falls and rapids going through. The colours of the rock too as really interesting, being all different shades of grey and with the backdrop of the green forest it looks so stunning. We can’t swim at this spot, but can where we parked up and have breakfast, so a few of us head in and it is so refreshingly cold. Linzi gets us to swim across the water to a big rock, so we can all jump off. A guy called Chris takes the jump first, as myself and another english girl are a bit more hesitant but get there in the end.
The next place we head to is Josephine Falls and to get there we have to drive through a super small town called Babinda, which annually competes with Tully for having the most rainfall in Australia, as it is right under one of the tableland mountains and has the golden gum boot at the moment with a record 4m in a year. Josephine Falls is really pretty, but also quite dangerous if the water levels are too high as the currents are so strong. Only last week there was news that someone got swept away from the falls and died, which is always upsetting to hear and makes us all very conscious we need to be really safe. The cool thing about these falls is the rock slide and everyone has quite a few goes going down. You need to be careful you don’t slide to far right as will get pulled under the water when you finish if you do. We stay there for a good hour and then it decides to absolutely pour down and as it is about a 15minute walk down, everyone gets so drenched and so ends up spending most of the day wet and damp. Luckily Linzi is prepared and has some spare towels for us to use.
4th March 2016