So I opted for the Minerva Hills out the back of Springsure. Of course, the road in there was closed as well but I’d made up my mind to walk it because road building lady had actually done it. I worked out it was 14 kms return but, after my pathetic effort two days before at climbing the mountain when I was stuffed after 40 minutes I wondered if age had caught up with me.
Still, I went for it and the walk was surprisingly easy along the made road. At one place I sidetracked to an ephemeral waterfall whose long splash made a noise that appeased the senses and aided a redolent atmosphere of calm that pervaded the bush.
I’d passed double barred finches, variegated wrens and a gospel of apostlebirds, so named because they were believed to rove in bands of twelve; and then there was that weird wasp like insect I’d run across, not to mention the strange fungus that had pushed up through the bitumen and the bevy of wildflowers that were merely a sprinkling compared to the blazing yellow wattle blooms.
The blue sky dazzled as it only can in Australia and it was so good to be walking again. I reached George’s Gorge (could have made a lot of that but I didn’t) which was a nice spot though not overly brilliant, then made my way the extra kilometre to Eclipse Gap lookout where the view was expansive without being stunning.
On the return journey I surprisingly ran into a middle aged couple who were heading up with only an hour’s sunlight left. I advised them it was around a 4 hour return journey and they seemed to heed my warning, saying they’d only go a little further.
Springsure is a supply town, somewhere to stop and somewhere to buy some food and maybe go to one of the local cafes.
There's not a lot to do here but the local information centre will help you as much as they can.
One of the things that does happen and is worth a look though is the floodlighting of Virgin Rock and Mount Zamia at night, from 7 p.m. onwards in winter which is when many tourists can be seen in the area and there's a free camp site right beneath the two mountains.
When travelling around Springsure, particularly early morn or at dusk, the kangaroos are grazing often near the road.
Many of the roads in the Orion District (named for the cluster of stars in the night sky) are narrow dirt roads . It is not flat country so a large 'roo can bound from higher ground right in front of you...hopefully not on to your car.
Best to avoid driving at these times. You can fit a little device to your car which makes a warning noise as the wind whitles through....and keep a very good'eye out'. Travel more slowly than usual.
But my son -in-law always advised NOT to swerve suddenly to try to avoid them.
Let someone know where you are heading if you choose to drive at danger time.