beach

Bye, bye beach…

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Tomorrow morning I will be going to New Zealand and it will be quite a while before I see my beach again. So this morning I made a monumental effort and biked down to see the sun rise.

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The surfers also arrived to catch the early morning waves.

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The seagulls preened and watched the passing parade.

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Then I went up the steps, at a more sedate pace than this young woman. To walk through the bush.

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Then it was time to go home, have breakfast and start packing.

Bye bye to my blogging buddies I may not be around for a while. I’ll miss you all.

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Categories: Australia, beach, Goldcoast, photos | Tags: , , , | 31 Comments

Early Morning Beach Activities…

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 Ok I did not get up at dawn to catch the sunrise, but at 6-30 it is still early and on a sunny, spring morning the beach is busy. Not much surf, but this keen surfer is still going to enjoy what swell there is. Families take their children down to play in the sand and the dog walking brigade is out in force.

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Maybe not much swell for surfers but it looks perfect for this canoeist.

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Looking north along the beach, Surfers Paradise, the hi-rise hubbub, looms on the horizon

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The surf life saving nippers go through their morning training drill, while a tourist catches the cancer rays. Hope she has splashed on the sunscreen…

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The life guards are a very necessary part of beach life as this ocean can be deadly with rips and tides changing unexpectantly. It is reassuring to see these yellow life guard huts dotted right along the beach at all the main tourist spots.

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At the southern end of the beach are the cafes and restaurants and the hi-rise holiday apartments. But I am going up to the walkway, through the park, beside the beach now. It is easier walking and there is lots of activity.

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It is good to see all ages taking some exercise.

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But these blokes have come down for a BBQ. What a lovely way to start the day.

But look behind them…

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This personal trainer has set up his boot camp. Look at all the torture treatment he is putting his troops through. While the BBQ blokes relax in the background…

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These lycra lads have stopped for a quick cuppa. Wonder how far they have biked this morning.

These pretty poodles are the same ones I saw earlier on the beach. They have just had the sand washed off their hairy heads.

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It’s good to see the dogs are catered for as it is hot work walking along the beach, and more so if you have to keep up with your master on his bike…

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Notice the fence on the left? Well I could hear a scratching and scuffling sound in the scrub behind it, so I peeped over. Look what I found…

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A Bush turkey busily scratching in the leaf litter for his breakfast. He was quite oblivious to all the passing crowds, and most of them did not even notice or hear him. I couldn’t resist taking a video of him…

At the end of the video you will see a pile of leaves he is building up. I think that may be a nest he is creating. The male bush turkey does all the house work duties and also rears the chicks on his own.

Here’s some interesting information about these birds, to read more click here.

All Megapodes, (mound builders)including the brush turkey, incubate their eggs in a large mound built and maintained by the male.

  • Mound generally 4m diameter and 1–1.5m high
  • Females dig a hole in the mound to deposit eggs that the male then covers over.
  • About 18–24 eggs are laid in a single mound by a variety of females.
  • Mound temperature affects the sex of the unhatched chicks. A normal temperature of 34 degrees produces equal ratio of sexes: lower temperatures produce more male chicks; higher temperatures more females.
  • The male uses heat sensors in his beak and test digs to check the temperature of the mound and maintain the temperature at 34 degrees.
  • The chicks hatch deep in the mound and take 40 hours to dig themselves out before they quickly find cover in the undergrowth.
  • Chicks fend for themselves and many are eaten by predators including raptors, kookaburras, goannas and cats.
  • Chicks hatch with well-developed flight feathers and roost at night high in trees for safety.

Normally they build their nests in the Burleigh Heads National Park. I have never seen one nesting in this area before. I will come back when I come back home from New Zealand to check him out.

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You may like to stop for a coffee or even breakfast at this coffee shop right on the beach. It is always popular. There are plenty more places to choose from across the road in James Street, the main shopping, café culture place in Burleigh.

I have come on my bike so I am going home for breakfast now, it is only a 10 minute bike ride.

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Restless Jo has a dedicated band of keen walkers from all around the world. To join them is a lovely relaxing, cyber way of seeing local places. Pop over to join them

Categories: Australia, beach, Burleigh, Goldcoast, Jo's Monday walks, photos | Tags: , , , , | 33 Comments

Gold Coast Icons,

Change is inevitable. I look around and see it happening. So before these Icons have gone and been replaced with bigger and better (often debatable) I decided to take my camera for a ride on the light rail/G.link to Surfers Paradise and walk around to show you what is here at the moment.

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This is Pacific Fair at Broadbeach. It opened in 1977 and at that time grew to be the major shopping centre on the Gold Coast. It was the jewel in the crown and a major tourist attraction.

“Pacific Fair opened in 1977 on what was swampland with just 96 specialty stores and two anchor tenants. Since then, Pacific Fair has undergone numerous expansions and grew to have more than 300 specialty stores and four anchor tenants.” (Wikipedia)

But gradually new shopping precincts opened. Robina muscled into the market. Brighter, bigger and all air-conditioned it made Pacific Fair look tired and out dated.

 So in January 2014, work began on a major redevelopment project to meet the predicted regional growth on the Gold Coast. Shoppers will be lured back to ‘bricks and mortar’ retailers from online shopping when the $670 million transformation of Pacific Fair is complete.

Take a look at what is coming….

Click on the following link for a fly-through of the proposed revamp.

http://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/news/gold-coast/pacific-fairs-670m-revamp-set-to-make-broadbeach-shopping-centre-a-mustsee-destination/story-fnj94idh-1226785865380

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This is the new look. What do you think? I prefer the previous frontage, as seen in the top photo. I think it has character and a certain style. This new (improved?) look to me is just a generic clone of commercial buildings, all square and chunky, no finesse…

Just a short stroll along the highway, negotiating the crossings and avoiding the trains, is Jupiter’s Casino.

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Jupiter’s Casino was opened in 1986 and has had 2 major renovations in 2006 and 2012.

The seven acre complex includes eight bars, seven restaurants, conference facilities, a ballroom, theatre, health spa, gym, and a monorail which connects the property to the Oasis Shopping Centre across the road. The hotel, with 594 rooms, stands 66 metres (216 feet) and has 21 floors.

But look what is coming…

This is an artists impression of the 6 star hotel complex that is to be built.

JUPITERS Hotel & Casino is embracing the great outdoors with work on the first stage of its $345 million transformation finally under way.  It is expected to be finished before the 2018 Commonwealth Games start.

I hop back onto the G. Link and hop off again at Surfers Paradise, a 5 minute ride.

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Across the road is the famous “Hard Rock Café” sign, but a sign of the times is the “for lease” sign in the window. Business has been hard for the traders in this area as the light rail took 3 years of disruption to construct and many shops simply closed the doors and walked away.

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Caville Avenue is the main pedestrian shopping and tourist mall in Surfers Paradise, but look how empty and quiet it is. The beach is just at the end of this mall.

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Mid-week and it is almost deserted. This is the iconic sign that must feature in millions of photos that go around the world.

The yellow life savers hut, yellow and red flags marking the safe to swim areas and the life savers on duty are icons I hope will never change.

Remember it is still winter,  the weather is glorious, but where are all the people…

Time to head back home…

This is Burleigh Beach and this is where the people are, well a few,  look at all the sun bathers…

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Back home and a walk along Burleigh Beach. In the distance, across the sparkling ocean, the iconic outline of the hi-rises of Surfers Paradise line the horizon. The highest spike, in the centre of the row of buildings is Q1. Last week we visited it and from the top viewing deck could see all the way to this beach. But already there are plans in the pipe line to build another apartment block even higher than Q1.

So change is inevitable…

Well here I am, it is Monday and I am joining Jo’s Monday cyber walking group. I made it on the day, just…

       

Categories: Australia, beach, Burleigh, Goldcoast, Jo's Monday walks, Pacific Fair, photos, Queensland, Surfer's Paradise | Tags: , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

Early morning walk along the beach…

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We missed the sunrise by about an hour. Being winter I cannot prise myself out of bed in the dark. But when we arrived at the beach by 7am it was still a beautiful sky. The sun tingeing the clouds with apricot and turning the ocean to molten gold.

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Of course we had our cameras with us and it was a perfect morning for a beach photo opportunity. So much activity. People walking, running, surfing, playing. All ages enjoying the sun while it is out.

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I wonder if he is going to catch anything for breakfast. The seagull looks on in anticipation…

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The surf is pumping and the wind whips the spray off the top of the waves in a frenzy of foam. It is a good day for the surfers.

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When I downloaded these photos I noticed the dark shadow in the wave. I wonder if it is a dolphin.

I took photo after photo of the ocean as it crashed endlessly, trying to catch that moment as the wave peaks and the light shines through in an iridescent green. Most of the shots I missed. These 2 above were the closest I got to what I was trying for.

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Walking north the sharks teeth outline of Surfers Paradise is shrouded in the misty ocean spray.

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At the top of the sand this patient pooche guards its masters clothes.

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He looks a bit woebegone…

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This area is the patrolled swimming area and in the distance is the surf life savers yellow hut and vehicle. It is school holidays and the life savers are on patrol from 8am to 6pm. every day. There are dangerous rips in this ocean and every year unsuspecting tourists are dragged out to sea. It is only the vigilance of these dedicated, volunteer life savers that only a few lives are lost each year and they are usually people who swim outside the flags that denote the patrolled, safe areas.

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A lovely morning to build sand castles with the help of  Mom and Gandma, but keep an eye on those waves…

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The tractor has been along the beach grooming the sand ready for another day of fun for the tourists.

Time to turn round and head back south and home for breakfast.

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The fisher man is still trying for that catch…

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One last look back.

The sun is well up now and we go back to where we left our bikes.

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They are still there next to this bench that shows the detail of the shape of a surf board. (Jude is looking for benches with unusual detail for July bench series. Couldn’t resist showing you this one…)

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Home we go for breakfast…

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I am also joining Jo’s cyber walking group this week. Being Wednesday I am a bit late for last Monday, and a bit early for next week (Sorry Jo I’m not following the rules too well… )

Categories: Australia, beach, bench series, Burleigh, Burleigh Beach, Goldcoast, Jo's Monday walks, Ocean, photos | Tags: , , , , , | 62 Comments

Storm Warning…

 

 Storm warnings are in place for this coast line as Tropical Cyclone Marcia bears down on us. She is due to land later today approx. 600 to 700 kilometres north of here. Then over the next 24 hours she will head our way.

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Cyclone Marcia has formed off Queensland’s coast and is expected to intensify to make landfall as a category two cyclone early on Friday.

Between 200 millimetres and 500 millimetres of rain is expected to be dumped between Thursday and Saturday on a massive stretch of Queensland’s coast, from St Lawrence to the southern border.

Some areas could get more than 300 millimetres in 24 hours and a flood watch is current for the Capricornia, Wide Bay and Burnett, Southeast Coast, and the Darling Downs and Granite Belt District forecast districts.

About 200 swift-water staff have been prepositioned for the event.

Gusts of up to 125 kilometres an hour, flash floods, high tides, beach erosion, possible tornadoes and powerful surf are expected from tomorrow to Saturday. (ABC News report)

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When I woke this morning I could hear the ocean pounding and roaring. It was just past high tide and it is another 24 hours before the cyclone reaches here. I grabbed my raincoat and camera and went down to Burleigh Beach

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It was grey and overcast, the wind was whipping up the ocean into a maelström of angry waves.

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Not 3 metre high yet, the storm front is still approx. 600 to 700 kilometres north. But this is just the forerunner of what is to come. It is forecast to reach 3 metre+ swells tomorrow.

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The life guards are already here to close the beaches

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This surf is far too dangerous for swimmers or surfers. The rips will drag out to sea any one silly enough to venture in.

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I think this family may be here for their holiday and they are determined to give their son a beach sand castle building experience. (I wonder if they have seen the sand sculptures at Surfers Paradise)

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Other beach walkers, like me, capture the churning ocean. Most I notice are using their phones as their camera.

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Every time these “weather events” (as the media now call them) strike, the surging ocean washes away the sand. This man is looking at the start of the beach erosion. Previous storms have created 6 to 10 foot drops were the sand has been washed out to sea. (see them here)

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A favourite pastime for many locals is coming down to the beach for a run or walk and followed by a reviving cup of coffee.

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Of course it is also a favourite place to walk the dog. I think this little fellow is telling them to hurry up…

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This is a lovely part of Queensland and that hill is Burleigh Heads National Park, but it is starting to spit with rain so I won’t go along the headland track today. (If you would like to see what it is like on a sunny day click here)

As I write this post it is raining and the wind is getting stronger. I have tucked all my pot plants away in a protected corner. Now will just wait to see what tomorrow brings…

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G’day Jo I would like to join your cyber walking group this week and show you the angry side of my home turf. Click here and come over with me to visit the other walkers from around the world.

Categories: Australia, beach, Burleigh, Goldcoast, Jo's Monday walks, photos, Queensland, storms | Tags: , , , , , | 74 Comments

Surfer’s, sea, sun, sand and sand sculptures…

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What better way to spend a sunny Sunday. It’s mid summer and we live in Australia’s tourist mecca. The beach is crowded with beautiful tanned bodies and the ocean is the perfect place to cool down.

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The Gold Coast has 40 kilometres of pristine beaches and it’s not often we come to Surfer’s Paradise, preferring our own, usually, less crowded beach at Burleigh, but this weekend we have been drawn here to see the annual sand sculpting competition

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We first pass Peter Pan and Tinkerbell who are sheltering inside the Paradise Centre. Then it is out into the heat to join the crowds admiring the rest of the displays.

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The winner

AFTER three days of battle, a New South Wales person has been crowned the 2015 Australian Sand Sculpting Champion.

Jino van Bruinessen was awarded the title on the Surfers Paradise Foreshore yesterday for his sculpture of Winnie the Pooh and friends.

Interpreting this year’s theme of ‘Magical Friendships’ featuring Disney, the winning sculpture weighed in at more than 10 tonnes and took around 26 hours to create.

Bruinessen pocketed $2500 and also won a second trophy for the People’s Choice Award.

Here are some of the other entries.

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One of the sculptors is still putting her finishing touches to her creation.

No additives are put into the sand, only water. The sand is a heavy grade, also known as “brickies sand” and it comes from the mouth of rivers. It has more squarish grains and will stick together better than the fine sand found on the beaches.

 The finished sculpture is sprayed with an environmentally-friendly biodegradable spray that gives them a water resistant coating.

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This little fairy is fascinated with them.

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I took this photo of the beach and when I downloaded onto the computer I discovered more sand creations. Can you see them?

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I can’t make out what the one on the right is. Any suggestions?

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These young Asian girls have just been out for a surfing lesson. Those are big boards for them to handle.

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Late afternoon and the sun slowly sinks behind the hi-rise buildings giving some welcome relief in the shade.

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It has been an interesting afternoon but I can see the golden arches of Macdonald’s tucked in among the hi-rise buildings.

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Time for a coffee and an ice cream sundae before heading home.

Categories: Australia, beach, photos, Queensland, Sand sculpture competition, Surfer's Paradise | Tags: , , , , | 47 Comments

A walk along Beautiful, Burleigh Beach : Joining Jo’s Monday walking group

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This is my street and that hi-rise is on the beach front, just one kilometre away. So join me as I hop on my bike to go down to the beach for my morning walk. Bring water, put on sunscreen and a hat it is hot and sunny.

Today is  a special day as it is the last Sunday of the month and that is the art and craft markets on the beach front.

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Only a 5 minute ride (10 minutes if you walk) and now I tie the bike up. The beach is just the other side of the bushes, from here we will head south, next time we will go north.

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I think I will wander around these markets, it is mostly local art and craft. I have never seen any Chinese or imported products here, great place to shop for gifts or Christmas presents. Be warned this could add an hour or more to the walk…

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It’s a great venue under the shady Norfolk Pines and next to the beach catching all the sea breezes. They are very welcome as it is going to be hot day today.

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That is my cup of iced tea waiting while I take a photo. It was delicious.

Still lots to see.

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This group of Hare Krishnas passed by chanting and playing their instruments. Times have changed as a few years back they would all be in their orange cloaks with shaved heads…

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This is Burleigh Beach, my local beach. It is very hot today and what better way to cool down, but you must swim between the flags as there can be very strong rips along this coast. Notice the surf life savers in their orange and yellow jackets.

That hill in the background is Burleigh Heads National Park and that’s where we will be walking round.

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The surf rescue boat and team are ready for any emergencies, and the sea is very choppy today.

The board riders club are having competitions.

The board riders club are having competitions.

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This is the surf club building, a great place to have a meal upstairs right on the water front. Downstairs you can have a coffee and a snack.

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Further along is my favourite coffee hole in the wall. I think she has recognized me!

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Notice all the seagulls on the scrounge?

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This is the entrance to the National Park.

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The tracks go round the hill in a figure of 8. The right hand track goes up the hill and is STEEP with lots of steps, quite a challenge. The left hand one goes round the bottom of the hill along the ocean. I am not very fit at the moment so we will go along the low track.

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This gate is padlocked if the track is dangerous. You’ll see the rocks soon.

The day we arrived home a fire broke out on the hill and these gates were locked for a few days. I am interested to see how much damage was done.

10AM: A SENIOR ranger has revealed an illegal camp fire is thought to be behind a large blaze that engulfed Burleigh Headland overnight.

The fire began at about 6.30pm and burned well into the early hours of the morning.

Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service senior ranger Henry Waterman said about three quarters of the sloping headland had been burnt.( go to this link to see dramatic photos of the blaze)

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How did these Pandanus survive?

The report was that three-quarter of the Park burnt, but in fact it was only a small section of the grass land, the bush was not effected.

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These are the rocks that caused the concern. They have been like this the 16 years we have lived here and probably very much longer.

Between 20 and 23 million years ago, molten lava from numerous eruptions in this area spread in all directions, some flows reaching the present coastline at Burleigh headland. Slow cooling of the thick lava resulted in shrinkage and cracking into six-sided columns. Many slid and rolled to the water’s edge.

So let’s quickly and safely move on.

Round into the shady, cooler bush track

Round into the shady, cooler bush track

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The 6 sided basalt columns line the track.

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Round the other side of the hill we look over to the mouth of the Tallebudgera River. Beyond is Palm Beach and down to Coolangatta and over the border into New South Wales. The wind is whipping up the foam today. No surfers out here in these conditions.

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Further along the river bank it is calmer. That bridge is the Goldcoast Highway, the major road south.

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On the other side of the river is another surf club, they certainly have the best beach front positions.

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This is the intersection of the 2 tracks, to go right it will be all up hill, straight ahead takes you to the Highway. I am feeling quite hot and so I think I will go back the way I came and leave the hill climb for another cooler day.

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There’s the iconic hi-rise outline of Surfers Paradise on the horizon.

I think I will stop for a coffee and ice-cream at that little kiosk.

Hope you enjoyed your walk in the sun.

To enjoy more walks around the world visit Jo’s blog and join her for Monday morning rambles.

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Categories: Australia, beach, Burleigh, Burleigh Heads National Park, Goldcoast, Jo's Monday walks, photos, Queensland | Tags: , , , , , , | 33 Comments

Early Morning Activity

A very early morning walk along the beach is a complete contrast to the last post.

It is 5am the sun is just appearing on the horizon.

Delicate pinks and greys light up the sky. A gentle soft breeze ruffles the ocean and waves peel off in perfect surfing breaks.

Then the sun arrives with a pallet of fire and briefly tints the ocean molten gold before bathing the world in that glorious glow of the golden hour.

The soft pink and grey of the pre-dawn highlights the buildings of the Goldcoast

The soft pink and grey of the pre-dawn highlights the buildings of the Goldcoast

Having an early cup of coffee watching the sunrise.

Having an early cup of coffee watching the sunrise.

The ocean in a gentle mood.

The ocean in a gentle mood.

Here is the sun turning the ocean blood red

Here is the sun turning the ocean into gold.

I wonder if he will catch anything.

I wonder if he will catch anything.

Ready to take on the surf

Ready to take on the surf will they catch that Burleigh barrel

Keen surfers arrive early to catch a wave or two

Keen surfers arrive early to catch a wave or two

Joggers exercise early to beat the heat of the day

Joggers exercise early to beat the heat of the day

The seagulls paddle around in the rock pools

The seagulls paddle around in the rock pools

The golden light highlights this kookaburra as he watches the activity

The golden light highlights this kookaburra as he watches the activity

Categories: Australia, beach, Goldcoast, Ocean, photos, Queensland, sunrise | Tags: , , , , , | 20 Comments

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