Fire Trail Final

by John Robertson

At 1300 on Saturday, 8th August the same team of Wil, Don and Robbo set off in 51 to complete the clearing of the lower part of the Showgrounds to Wonglepong fire trail. This was done from the end of Bambling Road upwards so we had a truck to carry our stuff. The drill was as before with Wil on his trusty chainsaw but there was no rakehoe work. Indeed, for part of the way an adjacent owner brought along his Mustang and cleared the medium and small timber for us. Beats handling! But for most of it clearing was still by hand.

Wil wanted to be sure that the cleared track did not become an open invitation to motor bike invasion. So rather than sawing up some of the big, fallen trees we dragged them aside so that they can be dragged back later to block the trail when it is not in legitimate use. This we did using 51 as motive power along with the ‘light’ snatch strap used as a long, strong rope. Don looped the strap onto a big, fallen tree, passed it around a tree base a little off the track and 51 dragged it to the required position clear of the trail. The process will be reversed when the track is out of use.
The very first use of the track will be this month as the Mountain section of the ‘Drumley Walk’ see; www.thedrumleywalk.com. This annual walk from Beaudesert to the Coast via Tamborine Mountain celebrates the life and achievements of local hero Billy Drumley. He lived to be almost a hundred and at age 86 completed the walk in one day. Would that any of us will be able match that!
Maps and photos of the areas discussed may be viewed here.
The first Google map shows the area to be burnt – that is the forest zone lying between the two upper red markers and the two lower yellow ones. The yellow markers show the route of the power lines up the Mountain which was the northern boundary of the burn two years ago. The intended new burn will have that as its southern boundary and the cleared fire trail as its northern boundary. About 300 hectares of forest lie in between. On the second map the two red markers indicate the start and end points of the fire trail which we cleared. The trail is not visible on the satellite image as it was completely overgrown when that was taken.
Having cleared all but a 20 metre buffer we set off for home and were back at the Station at 17:45 – not a moment too soon as the headlights on 51 had failed yet again. A useful and interesting afternoon.”

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