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Troopy Heaven – an Aussie Classic


Louise Edwards

Rungulla National Park has an annual rainfall of 800mm but what happens when 170mm or 21% of the yearly rainfall falls in a day and a half? Four Wheel Drive (4WD) fun! Heaven for every Troopy owner (Toyota Landcruiser). I joined the botanists Matt and Gerry and the Park Rangers Alex and Brendan on an expedition to Carson Spring.

The creeks were flowing and the road crosses were covered in water. We came across a fast flowing and what potentially looked deep, so Brendan got out to assess the depth. It was decided to turn around and find another site for the day. And what a site it was, absolutely beautiful. It was East of our base camp and is called the Rungulla Bungles.

We had not gone very far when the four different species of fungi were found on one fallen iron bark tree. It was exciting to be part of finding these and then listening to Matt describe the samples, including their structure and history of their identification process. Alex then showed us the most beautiful natural spring that is surrounded by a tree, but not vertical, the tree was horizontal and curved in and around rocks. Alex is also the granddaughter of Traditional Owner JR. On returning to base camp in a state of pure saturation Janet (a Primary school teacher) and I walked down to check out the Gilbert River in all its glory. What a site! And Sound! All this water will leave our State of Qld and end up exciting the country in the North….the Gulf. Amazing!

What I am seeing is so special, most people will never see it in their lifetime. Even though it was specular I was a little scared of crocodiles, as I am pretty sure they would not be in the fast flowing torrents. I made it back safe. The rain has now stopped and I look forward to being online with my Awesome Year 8 science students and then again in the field tomorrow.