Paluma Dam to Volk Rd, Bruce Highway
Rumor has it that Roberts Foxlee had a falling out with Tom Andrews, also known as Bullocky Tom, and decided to cut a new track instead of using Bullocky Tom's Track.
In 1903, Foxlee planned and cut the new route up to the tin mines.
Phil Foxlee opened his track over an arduous route from Saltwater (now Crystal Creek) passing along the range at the lookout which bears his name and connecting with the other network at Mount Spec - These tracks were opened in the 1880-1890 period.
For this walk, I suggest you start at Paluma Dam and walk via DCK Shelter past the old mines to the start of the track. Cross the two creeks, splendid in green moss and ferns, to walk along the old mining race. The rain forest is moist and a few leeches are present. Past Garde's battery and a short steep climb up to the tin mine sites. Once at Foxlee's track junction, dawdle down the track to arrive at Foxlee's lookout - 65 minutes hike from DCK hut.
In 1920, the Townsville mayor at the time can be seen in a photograph at Foxlee's Lookout discussing the possibilities of a housing community development in the Mt Spec area.
While you're in the area around DCK, you may want to look at Buttercup lookout, another short steep climb, where many orchids, including buttercups, are on display.
Even in summer Paluma's high altitude provides a pleasant temperature for walking; it's about 7 degrees cooler than Townsville. You will hear a lot of birdlife all day as you walk through the rainforest. You may even see Tooth-billed Bower Bird bower and the golden bower bird bower on the side of the Paluma tracks.
Mt Leach is not far from Foxlee's Lookout and is just off the track. However, it's just a hump int eh rainforest with no views to see.
I host advenutres every weekend around Townsville. If you are fit and capable, join us on these expeditions by visiting Townsville Advenutres.
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