Authorised walking

Devoted followers of our adventures might be forgiven for wondering what happened to Majella’s burning ambition to attempt all of the walks from Laura Ryan’s book this year. I posted on 20 April about the walks we had completed to that time. Thereafter we toured in South Australia & Northern Territory with friends and managed other activity including a quick trip to Sydney but have neglected our walking project.

The year is running away and we will be OS for 6 weeks in September/October so time was running short for our walking project. Since we were due to visit Majella’s parents we decided to do that last Thursday and add a walk from the Binna Burra group on Friday.

Bev Williams had been keen to join us on a walk following her recent efforts to get back walking trim but when we called her she was battling a leg problem and not up to it. Because we hadn’t seen Laura since before she flew to Canada to visit John, Majella called to see if she might be home while we were on the coast and discovered that she was intending to walk from Binna Burra on Friday morning. She was planning a longer walk (21 km Ships Stern Circuit) than the one (12 km Lower Bellbird Circuit) we were contemplating but, since they could share a starting point and some track, she suggested we could meet and set off together. That seemed like a great opportunity to catch up and do part of our walk in the company of Majella’s inspiration so we agreed to an 8:00 am start from Binna Burra.

That required us to depart Tweed Heads soon after 6:00 am. As we approached Binna Burra through Beechmont we had a call from Laura who had struck traffic problems and was some way behind us. She suggested a pause for coffee at Flying Bean Cafe. Fortunately we were just short of that point so we stopped, enjoyed the view, ordered coffee, scone and muffin, and then ordered coffee for Laura as she arrived.

Then it was off to Binna Burra for our walk. Laura had been battling a cold and had decided against the longer walk. Instead we had the pleasure of her company and experience on our walk around Lower Bellbird Circuit. On Laura’s advice we parked near the information centre and walked down the road to start.

About to enter the forestThe first part of the trail was through former dairy farm being reclaimed for the park but soon enough we were into the forest. On Laura’s advice we walked the extra 3 km diversion to the foot of Ballanjui Falls and back before climbing back to Binna Burra Lodge to explore that area. By that time we had walked close to 15 km. Laura kindly walked the 2 km back to the car park and returned to give us a lift to our car. My photos have been added to my Flickr album for our Yugambeh Country walks.

That might have been enough for a day but we had decided to drive to Sydney to visit Nick and Simone and see their 4 kids in a dance concert on Saturday. We drove down from Binna Burra, through the Numinbah Valley to Murwillumbah and then on as far as Port Macquarie where we stayed on Friday night. Saturday morning we drove on to Sydney. We enjoyed the dance concert at Windsor on Saturday afternoon and then headed home early Sunday morning. That should be good training for our ambitious travel plans in the USA over September and October.