Wyaralong Dam

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Wyaralong Dam

Postby Ticklebelly » Sun 21 Aug, 2011 11:16 am

Checked out the Mt Joyce track at the newly opened recreation park at Wyaralong Dam (just outside Beaudesert). Did just under 15k roundtrip from the dam wall carpark to the top of Mt Joyce then down the Ridgeline (both rated advanced) track to the Mt Joyce base camp, then back on the easy rated track to the carpark. Several portions of the tracks are shared with bike riders but the I had no issues and the tracks are wide enough for all to use. Vertical climb is about the 350m mark but not too difficult. A couple of massively thorny shrubs in the wrong place and need to be avoided as handholds in those scrambling bits. The Ridgeline track back down to water level is pretty loose in parts and it will be interesting to see just how much erosion happens once the path is well worn and the rain does its work. Pretty open scrub/dry forest and interesting 360 views from the top of Mt Joyce. I see potential for a larger circuit to include Flinders Peak, for example. Saw Prettyface wallabies and schools of carp (in the water) and a fair smattering of birdlife. A good day out in all.

When the recreation park is completed, there will be about a 30k walk between the East and West trailheads; one path will be up and over Mt Joyce and will require a bit of an effort. The recreation park already has a really good mountain bike park and several canoe "tracks". The only through walk camp site I am aware of so far, is about 7.5k from the car park and is not really convinent for anyone wanting to do the 30k walk in two relatively easy stages. But this is all early days. Lots more is planned for the facility and I'm looking forward to doing the canoe bit at least. Interested people can get a map of the park here.
http://www.mtjoyceescape.com.au/walking-trails.html Camping at the dam is free at the moment and site numbers are limited. Caravans and camper trailers are banned and stink boats are not permitted on the dam. I suspect this place is going to be VERY popular in the future and right now might be a good time to check it out.

Phillip, if you read this, no hammock potential but I suspect the organisers would positively respond to a request for the installation of suitable facilities at the camp grounds (can you think of a more minimal impact over nighting method?). The organisers seem to be very advanced in their thinking and seem very keen to respond to public wants and needs.

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Wyaralong Dam

Postby ULWalkingPhil » Sun 21 Aug, 2011 1:08 pm

Looks like will be a very good hiking track. Pity about the lack of trees at the camp sites.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby tba » Wed 12 Oct, 2011 6:36 pm

Was at Mt Joyce on Mon 3 Oct. Koala in tree at the very top. Don't see them very often.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ricadam » Mon 08 Jul, 2013 1:10 pm

Sorry to dig up an old thread. I was wondering if anyone has been there recently to give any updates?

Im thinking of making this my first multi-day (and possibly first ever) hike and hike up to Mt Joyce. I am just wondering if I am biting off more than I can chew?
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby Picaro » Mon 08 Jul, 2013 7:43 pm

I've been out there a few times recently. Done the Ridgeline track in both directions, and both Mt. Joyce ridges in both directions. Nice views and a good day ( or two ) walking. Afraid I have no way to tell if its more than you can chew. Its certainly not technical, but there are some good steady ascents. Average fitness stuff in my estimate.

Unfortunately, funding was pulled before the Flinders Peak to the Ridgeline section was done.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Sun 27 Jan, 2019 6:56 pm

Went for a mooch out there today to check the Meebun campsite at the recreation area
for a future family outing... :(

From the SEQwater website....
From 31 January 2017, the Meebun camping area at Lake Wyaralong was converted to a day use area offering a safe, clean and family friendly recreation space for the community to enjoy. Check our recreation and safety notices for more information about the change.

From their e-updates page...
Changes to camping at Lake Wyaralong
Families and visitors to the Meebun day use area will have noticed the absence of backpackers and campers frequenting Meebun since the 8 free campsites were closed at the end of January. The sites were the cause of numerous compliance and hygiene issues including the misuse of toilet facilities, environmental damage, illegal activity and vandalism. The closure of this site as a camping area has made the Meebun day use area cleaner, safer and more family friendly. It is also the first step in the implementation of a master plan for recreation at Lake Wyaralong.

Their recreation PDF hasn't been updated that's all.
Oops, I take that back, their recreational guide on the front webpage does have no camping on it.

The Ngumbi remote camp is still operational.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby Kuhr » Thu 04 Apr, 2019 7:43 am

Hello all

I have walked at Wyaralong Dam from the Eastern Trailhead and up Mt Joyce fairly often, as recently as this January. That was an unpleasant near 40c day and I do not recommend walking out there in hot weather.

Regardless of route, this is not a technical or difficult place to walk, Mt Joyce is 469m high and there are multiple ways to ascend it of varying gradient. It is easy to make a circuit of at least 14km here or longer including the summit.

The trees are dry eucalypt with a fairly open canopy and I have seen very large kangaroos here, as well as wallabies and various birdlife.

I usually walk up the service road past all the mountain bike trails which is fairly hilly, with good views of Flinders Peak. This terminates where it meets a side contour track named Bills Link. There is a few signs here and meeting mountain bikers taking a breather is common.

The tourist route is to proceed along Bills Link until it meets an intersection with the grass tree track and the ridge line side track. The latter is then taken to join the tourist ridge proper and ascend a short distance to the summit.

An alternative is where Bills Link is encountered, just to the right of it a faint footpad leads steeply up to a rocky outcrop.

This leads to an unnamed ridge which is entirely off track. It drops into a wide grassy saddle and then continues eventually all the way progressively steeper to the summit proper. Not technical at all, with no exposure, but I spent a half hour at the summit last time removing thousands of cobbler pegs.

An alternative again is to take the shoreline track from the Eastern Trailhead until the base of the grass tree trail is reached. This is a fire trail of sorts and has a few steep hills reaching the side ridge turn off mentioned above. It is the least interesting of the options.

Regardless of how the summit is reached, the views of the lake are spectacular and the best descent route is the tourist ridge which descends often steeply to the base of the mountain. No exposure but plenty of places to slip over.

Once the bottom is reached, there is an intersection - to the right is an optional side trip which adds 1km to the Ngumbi campground. This is worth visiting as SEQ water have a shelter here of two large old country farm houses put together and there is a large picnic table under a verandah, as well as tank water - a great place to eat lunch or take refuge if temperatures soared higher than expected.

Then it is a straightforward 7km walk along the shoreline track back to the car park over undulating hills.

One of the best aspects of this walk is isolation. I have rarely seen other visitors except mountain bikers, once horse riders, another time a school group at the campgrounds but no one on the summit.

It is possible to do this in reverse for those who want the steep climb up the tourist ridge from the bottom to the summit.

I haven't done it, but I know a west to east walk is possible over the summit via the ridgeline track. A car shuffle would be required. Lillybrook station seems the natural start as it is signposted as the western trailhead, but this is deceptive and adds unnecessary Kms to an already long walk.

There is a trailhead much closer on Knehr Road off Old Beaudesert Road. It is an unsealed road but in good condition. There is a small car park here with trailhead signage.

Depending on the route taken the distance would be 21km to 28km and involve a lot of up and down on the ridgeline. A long day, although Ngumbi campground could be included in the route to make it an overnighter as well.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby Kuhr » Thu 04 Apr, 2019 8:12 am

Thought I would throw in a few random photos.
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Circuit of Wyaralong Dam
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Unnamed grassy ridge.
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View from the summit
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Ngumbi Campground
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Shoreline trail near the lake
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Descending the ridge with a group
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Thu 04 Apr, 2019 3:49 pm

Thanks for sharing the pics & info, Kuhr
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Tue 21 May, 2019 11:35 am

Main tracks closed for the time being...

Screenshot_2019-05-21_113125.jpg
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Thu 23 May, 2019 10:11 am

Email from the powers that be...
Access tracks to reopen at the end of May/early June or thereabouts....
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Wed 29 May, 2019 3:40 pm

Track access is open again...

Screenshot_2019-05-29_153414.jpg
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Sun 02 Jun, 2019 3:55 pm

Weather, cool & overcast.
Mt Joyce is worth a look, especially now the cool season is here... Sunrise over the impoundment is beautiful, summit was cold & windy.
Grey kangaroos hanging around the Secret Valley picnic area & your better off riding a pushbike if you want to visit Ngumbi camp area...lots of ups & downs & a bit boring.

Very happy chappy once l left the service tracks behind...
West of the Main Range so its a dry area, bring enough water for your walk.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby Aardvark » Sun 02 Jun, 2019 5:42 pm

ofuros wrote:Weather, cool & overcast.
Mt Joyce is worth a look, especially now the cool season is here... Sunrise over the impoundment is beautiful, summit was cold & windy.
Grey kangaroos hanging around the Secret Valley picnic area, better off riding a pushbike if you want to visit Ngumbi camp area...lots of ups & downs.

Very happy chappy once l left the service tracks behind...
West of the Main Range so its a dry area, bring enough water for your walk.

West of Main Range???
I was west of Main Range today near to midday and lots of rain. Rained all the way back to Brisbane.
Ever on the search for a one ended stick.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Sun 02 Jun, 2019 5:45 pm

I overnighted, so I was home by midday.... :wink:

....in my mind I was picturing the Great Dividing Range, running closer, North/South along our Eastern seaboard.

...so East of the Main Range N.P. or west of Beaudesert. :wink:
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Sun 02 Jun, 2019 6:07 pm

Watching the sunrise from Mt Joyce

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Grass tree's were in flower...

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Oops, sideways pic alert !
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby Kuhr » Sun 02 Jun, 2019 7:10 pm

Thanks for the update ofuros!

I plan to take a group there next Sunday via the unnamed ridge (thinking of naming it the cobbler ridge after I threw out a pair of socks after my last trip there)

Agreed the return from the campground is humdrum but I did find a cool cave otw back a few times, couldn't get in because it has a kind of sinkhole in front, was thinking of scrambling down to it another time.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Sun 02 Jun, 2019 8:40 pm

Cobbler alert...they're still around. Like little needles pricking your skin as you walk along. Special pitstops needed to de-seed. Short gaiters are the go.
I'll probably try the Unnamed ridge next time too.
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Re: Wyaralong Dam

Postby ofuros » Mon 03 Jun, 2019 9:04 am

Turn left into the long grass...just before the shoe-on-the-fence. :wink:
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Secret Valley grey kangaroos
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Fluffy stuff on the track
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Spotted gum ?
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Mt Joyce views
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Ngumbi walk-in camp from the ridgeline track
DSCF5112 (Medium).jpg
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