The real getaway
Sunday's outing at Springbrook was designed to be the consolation for missing the Alpine. However, it may have turned out to be even better. Springbrook turned on what could only be described as the most perfect day. When the mountain starts playing tricks with the cloud, there is nowhere else in the world a person would want to be. The climb was negotiated with surprising comfort on The Black Magic -- it was the highest altitude that bike had seen in almost four years.
Between 600 and 800 metres on the climb I received a welcome drenching from the sky. This was also busy stirring up the waterfalls on the Eastern side of the escarpment. Consequently, after cresting Best Of All Lookout to another whiteout, I headed back to Goomoolahra Falls to take in some spectacular views of clouds lifting from the mountain. I also explored some of the area around Twin Falls as the mist moved back in. The implication from this was clear, it was time to head back to lower altitude.
I was joining my bushwalking group for a trek around Purlingbrook Falls, with a detour to Warringa Pool for a swim. It was actually quite a warm day by Springbrook standards, meaning it must have been sweltering on the coast at that time (it had been 26 degrees C overnight there). Purlingbrook Falls is always pleasant, but standing right under the spray from the waterfall was something else again. The water temperature at the rock pool was quite beautiful for swimming or just general existence. There was a general consensus that it had been a quite lovely day when we all retreated to Mudgeeraba for a quenching ale (or orange juice in my case).
For me personally, the day was significant for another reason. The news is The Blue Flame could be off the road for a while, but the performance of The Black Magic indicated that I may not lose a great deal in between. The Mt Jerusalem National Park jaunt is on either way. I also had the last laugh back at the Woodchoppers Inn at Mudgeeraba (after absolutely slaughtering a few rolling hills after the big descent) when I was the only one in the group not to be carrying some uninvited guests in the form of leeches. Sometimes letting others lead the way on a walk has greater motivation than just politeness.