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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Leeches, torrential rain and floods

All through the night and all through the day it rained. Sometimes just a light drizzle but more often it was torrential. Even as we left the campsite we had to stop because of a tree down across the road. Not just that one but by the lookout as well. And that 'Best of all Lookouts' was again a total wipeout with too much cloud cover to see anything.

 But this is the rainy season so to be expected but was it going to stop us looking at waterfalls? Not on your life. Waterproofs, walking shoes and bug spray and we set forth with gusto. But that rain had swelled the small creeks and we found ourselves paddling through water more often than not.  We even had to negotiate small waterfalls cascading from the rocks. The path went right through the middle.

Also, those leeches came out in force. 5 were found on Ian with one right between his toes. Bled for what seemed like forever but then again since his chemo he bleeds profusely at the slightest cut. Most of the leeches were very small and although none actually latched themselves onto me, my coat, shoes and trousers seemed to be targeted. Even on the floor of the camper, on our return, one was looking for a meal.

3 times we changed and even our waterproofs turned out not to be waterproof. As for the shoes...how I will get them dry is beyond me. But a walk behind one of the falls, truly wonderful and very unexpected. So much water flowing that the falls cleared the path enough to get right behind it. Never thought I would welcome so much rain but the rain forest came alive, so vibrant and the smell....wonderful. 

Behind the Twin waterfall

and my turn. This is where we picked up most of the leeches.

That's Ian in the red jacket.
The last walk was to the natural bridge falls. This was almost in a cave with the falls being viewed through the rock wall. This cave also housed a number of glow worms but at 4pm it was still too light to see them.

The rain was relentless. Instead of staying in the Springbrook area we had an urgent need to fill the camper with water and find a dump point. Nearest one was at Coolangatta about 57k away so we set off not realising what was in store. All the rain had caused the creeks to burst it's bank in two places along the road. First one we drove straight through without a problem but the second had more flow to it. To turn around would put another 100km on our journey and when a 4X4 drove through without any problem, Ian felt we were high and heavy enough to plough our way through.

Top left, 1st creek.. 2nd creek a bit more challenging but we made it without incident.
Wednesday pm and it is still raining! Forecast for the Queensland/NSW coast is for flooding and more rain in the next few days. Not a good end to our final journey here in Australia, but we will make the best of it. The weekend we will be staying with our niece Lizzie and Rich.Then a trip to the Blue Mountains before returning the camper on the 23rd.

A few more photos of the walk to the waterfalls.

This bush turkey took refuge in the same hut where we were waiting for the heavy rain to ease. Wise turkey!

At Canyon lookout.

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