Glen Rock National Park is nestled in a remote valley in the Mistake Mountains south of Gatton. It’s the perfect place to visit after rain.
We started at Junction View, where two creeks meet, and followed the creek on our left.
East Haldon Road was quiet, lined on either side with head-high grass. The land seemed happy about all the water in the creek…
…so were we.
After a quarter of an hour, the paved road gave way to dirt. Tyres cheerfully crunched on gravel. The jagged peaks of Main Range loomed large in front of us.
I marvel about how often we find ourselves in such picturesque places. This is a stunning valley.
As if to welcome us, the final causeway splashed our feet when we rolled through the entrance to the national park.
The valley narrowed. High up on our left a pimple of rock poked out – Glen Rock: the outcrop after which this park was named.
We rolled for a while through head-high “fukawi” grass. I silently hoped there were no hidden logs or angry snakes under the grass.
We were in luck.
We tried bravely to ride through, but most of us got our feet wet at the first creek crossing.
The second one was even deeper.
John powered through until his bike disappeared, then walked the rest of the way.
The rest of us waded through, carrying our bikes.
This scenario repeated many times. I was glad I’d worn some well-draining shoes. They filled up with water as I walked through the creek, then drained out afterwards. Soon after my feet felt reasonably dry again.
We continued up the valley through endless fields of emerald-green grass.
We stopped for a break at Abbots Yards – an old stockyard. The flies were thick, so a few of us donned bug nets to keep the insects out of our faces.
It’s only when you’re surrounded by a swarm of flies that you realize how useful a bug net is.
I was glad I brought mine.
Forty-five minutes later we arrived at “Top Yards” – the second historic cattle yard in the National Park.
This whole area was heavily damaged by bushfires three months earlier.
The trunks of the eucalypts were burned black, but lush green regrowth sprouted ouf of the trunks.
These trees have an amazing regenerative capability after fire. They spring to life with a flourish of new shoots, eager to bounce back after the destruction. It’s a wonderful thing to behold.
Towards the top of the valley the track grew steep.
It was getting close to noon, so we decided this would be a good spot to stop, have a break, then turn around and make our way back to the start.
Better late than never, Keith eventually caught up with us at the half-way point.
He had arrived half an hour late at the start of the day, and had been chasing us all morning.
The ride back down the valley was much quicker.
All morning we had been gradually riding uphill. The gradient was so gentle it was imperceptible – until we turned around.
Now we were rolling down the valley at twice the speed we rode up it.
Max elevation: 495 m
Min elevation: 231 m
Total climbing: 748 m
Total descent: -732 m
Average speed: 15.17 km/h
Total time: 05:02:07
We rode a total of forty-seven kilometres in five hours. During that time we climbed about five hundred metres in elevation, and I burned about 2,500 kcal.
This was an easy ride in stunning surroundings – good for the soul.
I’ll rate it 6 out of 10 on the tough-o-meter. Be prepared to get wet feet!
Thanks Calum, Russel, Kaye, Adam, Jason, Eric, John and Keith for a fun day out.