BUSHFIRE SEASON HAS STARTED


The bushfire season is off and running in New South Wales, Australia. There have already been several fires in my region of the Mid North Coast.

On Saturday there was a fire just south of Bulahdelah that closed the Pacific Highway for two hours. From what I understand the fire is thought to have begun by a discarded cigarette thrown from a car travelling on the highway.

The fire started at about 3.30 pm and as the fire intensified cars were seen travelling on the wrong side of the highway in a bid to keep clear of the fire. With the thick smoke about this was not the best move to make.

Another fire was burning off the highway near the Karuah Bridge on Monday, again producing thick smoke.

With the massive amount of growth in the bush over the last couple of wet growth seasons, the fuel load is now massive and fuel reduction burns have been limited. With temperatures already peaking in the low thirties (Celsius), the season ahead looks grim.

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KYOGLE, NORTHERN NSW


I had forgotten this journal on several previous trips, so this will be the first trip fully recorded in this journal.

Yesterday I began my journey from home and reached as far north as Woolgoolga, north of Coffs Harbour. I stayed at a place called Rosebourne Gardens (a motel – 48 Clarence Street Woolgoolga). It cost $55.00, with $10.50 for breakfast (total $65.50).

Of interest are the travel times (especially for future trips):

  1. hour: Karuah
  2. hours: Taree
  3. hours: Port Macquarie
  4. hours: Macksville
  5. hours: Woolgoolga

For my further travels north it took a further:

  1. hour: Tyndale
  2. hours: Ballina
  3. hours: Murwillumbah

My first destination was Cudgeon Nature Reserve. This simply involved driving through the area, which is clearly an important reserve area for native wildlife.

From Cudgeon N.R. I travelled along the Clothiers Creek Road and then headed to Tweed Heads and the Minjungbal Aboriginal Cultural Centre (Tweed Historic Site). It was shut, which may have been a good thing since it costs $15.00 for adults to get into the museum.

I then travelled back to Murwillumbah and headed for the Wollumbin National Park. The access road travels through beautiful country, but the road isn’t all that good.

After Wollumbin N.P. I travelled back along the Tyalgum Road and back onto the Kyogle Road. Off this road I then headed for Mebbin National Park and this trip’s first bush walk.

Here I walked the 450m Byrrill Creek Walk, which is quite obviously drought affected – very dry indeed there. The walk begins from the camping and picnic area on Cadell Road.

When I headed off on the Lemon Tree Road for the other walk I managed to get the car stuck on the very bad road (suitable really only for 4WD – in hindsight). After struggling for about 10 minutes to move it a 4WD happened along and the occupants helped me to move the car.

Having moved the car and turned it around for me, I was able to head back up the road and continue on the drive through the park (well worthwhile).

So for tonight I’m staying at the Magnolia Manor Bed and Breakfast (198 Summerland Way, Kyogle, 2474). This was a well spent $95.00. It is a great little place.