The Mount Clunie Cabins are located on a property bordering the World Heritage listed Mt Clunie National Park, a 2hr drive from Brisbane. The cabins have no electricity and paltry phone coverage. The stove, fridge, lights and hot water are all gas powered, and there is a wood heater for the cooler nights. It is an easy place in which to relax and unwind and the deck even extends past the veranda roof to allow for viewing the stars. There are numerous bushwalks on offer, and 190 species of bird have been twitched.
However the real highlight, other than the cabin’s mountain outlooks in almost every direction, was Fran and Jim’s (the hosts), amazing garden. It was full of grevillas from across the country, as well as banksias and kangaroo paws. I have never seen so many Eastern Spinebills – they were flitting around everywhere, as well as families of superb fairy-wrens, pairs of Eastern yellow robins and numerous other honeyeaters. Apparently the garden is also visited by black cockatoos, regent and satin bowerbirds and azure kingfishers! It was lovely to stroll around in and much easier birdwatching than in the surrounding rain forest…
Jim also took us on a spotlighting trip with the target species being the greater glider. Reading though the reference books supplied in our cabin, I and was surprised by how big it was (body length up to 45cm) and with such a long tail (up to 60cm long).
Jim said for every 100 people who had seen a koala, only 0.2% would have seen a greater glider, but after only glimpsing a pair of glowing eyes in a far away tree, I can’t yet put myself in that exclusive group!
However, the spotlighting trip was still lots of fun and we ended up learning lots about the different trees of both the rainforest and dry sclerophyll forest. Also, the trees don’t move in the dark which makes spotting them much easier than looking for nocturnal animals!
After only staying for 2 nights, we didn’t get a chance to explore all the trails on offer. There are also lots of walks that could be done in surrounding national parks. Fran recommended that we visit Tooloom national park for the short rainforest walk there, and we found this to be a lovely pocket of forest with lots of mature trees filled with epiphytes.
We would recommend staying 3 nights at Mount Clunie to properly relax and allow ample time to investigate the walks on the property, admire the stunning grevilla garden, visit some of the surrounding national parks and hopefully spot a few birds or gliders.