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Hiking the Bump Track - My Experience

My Partner and myself love hiking, but due to covid we haven’t been able to do much, and now that we are back at work finding time to go hiking has been hard. But finally we got a day off together and were able to go. We chose something close to home and a hike which we had been wanting to do since we moved to Port Douglas 3 years ago. This hike is famously known as the bump track. The bump track was originally created as a transport road from the gold mines inland to the sea at Port Douglas. The steep slopes were traversed by horse and cart in the early days. After the first world war motor vehicles started to become more popular and they began to use the bump track. However in some parts of the track it was too steep for the early cars to make it up, so horses were still used in these areas to pull the cars up the hill. This hard part of the track is known as steep point, and after climbing it we understand why. Luckily this is the first part of the hike and once you reach the top (the landing) it is pretty flat from there onwards.

The length of the track is 6km one way, but after about 4km there is a small path which leads off into the jungle. After about another 2 km on this smaller jungle path you end up at the top of the Mowbray falls.

This is a great place to stop and have some lunch and enjoy the view. As it is currently the end of our dry season, we were able to safely climb part way down the falls, which gave us a great opportunity to get some long exposure shots. However I made a rookie mistake and didn’t check the light when we first arrived at the falls. I was hungry after the 6km hike there and decided to have lunch first. By the time I had finished eating the sun was beginning to move more towards the west. This meant that for my long exposure shots I was mainly shooting into the sun, and I didn’t have much time before the waterfall started to drop into shadow.

Oh well, lesson learnt, I will just have to go back, and get up a little earlier next time...

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