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#TreeSquare #31: Trees in the Bunya National Park

In this month’s square’s challenge I started at home and spiraled farther and farther from home to share different tree species in my travels. . These trees represent furthest distance from my home.

Becky B’s Squares #Tree Squares

#Australia Trip #7 Bunya Mountains, Queensland, AU

The Bunya Mountain National Park, established in 1908, is the state’s second oldest National Park. The park, located in the wilderness area of the Great Dividing Range, contains the largest stand of ancient Bunya pines.

To thoroughly enjoy the best hiking trails in the Bunya Mountains, you should wear stable hiking shoes and take a camera or at least your smart phone. Be ready to be amazed.

4 km Scenic Loop at the Bunya Mountains National Park, Queensland, Australia

We chose the 4 km scenic trail which we estimated correctly to be 2.5 miles as the best of the hiking trails for us. The path was wide and covered with crunchy plant material like Bunya needles. Even though I had on my stabilization shoes, the group in front of us hiked along with nothing more than thongs, as my Australian friend calls flip-flops.

“Wearing thongs on this path is not wise!” Carol said. “Some of the plants are poisonous to the touch.”

These leaves and branches seemed much more dangerous than touching poison ivy in the United States.

Giant Sting trees line the path.

The sign states that even after being dead 100 years the stingers on the leaves can still cause pain if you touch them. They can become airborne and cause damage to lungs.

Holes Carved on Purpose or a Natural Occurrence?

Controversy as well as holes pockmarked this bunya pine. Some historians believe that the Aboriginal people axed the pines to climb up to the top and harvest the pine cones.

The other conjecture is that the bunya pine lost its branches as it grew. They broke off and left holes. I think the first guess is more interesting. What do you think?

Though we did not experience this, the guidebook warns that 10 kg/22 lb cones drop on the trail under the bunya pines between December and March. The bunya nuts are quite soft and juicy when immature and great for roasting when they mature. Large groups of Aboriginal people gathered for festivals until Europeans logged the pines and began farming.

Eventually, after passing many strangler vines, we arrived at the top of Festoon Falls.

Festoon Falls in the Bunya Mountains National Park

On the way back up we noticed that the strangler figs got more aggressive with the bunya pines. In some instances, they took over.

Marsha in an ancient Bunya Pine.

Hiding in trees brings out the kid in everyone. Who doesn’t want to have a special hide away?

Our 2.5-mile hike, though easy, took us over an hour. The hiking guide said to allow 20 minutes per kilometer for this Class 3 hike, so we were not far off from one hour and twenty minutes complete with photography. According to the guide, a reasonable level of fitness is required as are stabilization shoes to offset the uneven ground. ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope you enjoyed this tell-tale trail. I never dreamed I would be hiking in the Queensland Mountains, but I did because of blogging. You never know what wonderful things will happen to you because of blogging.

Regular Always Write Features

Thank you, Becky for hosting this wonderful blogging event. Thanks to all my blogging friends for visiting my #TreeSquares.

designed by Lisa Coleman

Have a happy and healthy August and September if I don’t see you again until the next Square event.

51 replies »

  1. We certainly do have some amazing trees here in Australia. The Bunya Mountain National Park is a favourite of ours and we are hoping to visit again soon (when we can get some accommodation) and I’ll make sure I share some photos when we do.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The Bunya Mountains are quite close to me here, but believe it or not, I’ve never been there. My sister and her husband used to camp there a lot. You also taught me something new – I’ve never heard of the stinging tree.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s also nice to have a place, like a blog to share about it to friends world-wide. How cool is that, Brian? My dad was an amateur photographer. He and his buddy got together about once a month and projected photos on the walls at each other’s houses. I thought it was rather boring and embarrassing, especially if it was me in the photo. But I guess I inherited some of his desire to take and share photos.

      Liked by 1 person

      • All I can say is “go Dad” what a great way to have a slide night. When parents friends had a slide night of their holidays I used to hate having to go. I wish I paid more attention now.
        I am glad that the photographic DNA was shared with you Marsha ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thanks, Brian. I am glad, too. I get a lot of pleasure from taking and sharing my photos, amateur as they are. They tell the story of me just as everyone’s photos tell the story of themselves and where they have been and the artistry in their vision and the skill in their processing. You have the same DNA. It crosses continents, races, creeds and brings us together to share what we are.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes, those stinging trees are not pleasant. Lauren got stung once when she was quite little. It was very painful for her. That’s why we always wear closed in shoes at the Bunya Mountains, because the leaves can get you even when they’re lying on the ground.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We were both very sensible me in my stabilization shoes and you in your trainers. No thongs on our feet. ๐Ÿ™‚ It didn’t seem as fearful as I made it seem in my post. I think you just have to be careful and knowledge is power.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It’s certainly a lovely place. We visited last year. It’s also culturally really significant to our First Nations people. And no, thongs aren’t the best footwear for hiking lol.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a great walk – lovely trees along the way and a waterfall at the end! Like you I prefer the first theory about the holes ๐Ÿ™‚ But there do seem to be rather too many dangerous things in Australia for my liking – fancy a tree that can harm you 100 years after its own death?!!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. What a wonderful trail, and makes me so happy to think that you take your time too when out hiking,. I hate to rush as there is always so much to see, and photograph!

    Liked by 2 people

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Marsha

Marsha

Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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