National Parks closures Gold Coast and Northern Rivers

Mt Warning Road is now open, with access to accommodation and cafes/restaurants also open for business, but the Wollumbin / Mount Warning Summit walk in Wollumbin National Park is closed due to storm damage.

Popular camping areas in Border Ranges National Park and Nightcap National Park are open.  See summaries below.

For alternative camping options see Big Volcano Campgrounds and Big Volcano Caravan Parks and Holiday Parks

For latest official details see Gold Coast hinterland national parks alerts at https://www.npsr.qld.gov.au/park-alerts and NSW NPWS Alerts at http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/alerts/alerts-list

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Gold Coast hinterland national parks alerts

Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk (view park page)

Lamington National Park closed due to ex-tropical cyclone Debbie

Lamington National Park (view park page)

Lamington National Park closed due to ex-tropical cyclone Debbie

Springbrook National Park (view park page)

Springbrook National Park closed due to ex-tropical cyclone Debbie

Cascades track in Mount Cougal section closed due to ex-tropical cyclone Debbie

As a result of damage from ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie, the above mentioned protected areas will remain closed until declared safe.

QPWS rangers are currently working on repairs. Observe all signage, barriers and directions from rangers, and do not enter closed areas.

Commercial tour operators and other permit or agreement holders are not permitted to enter closed areas.

Tamborine National Park (view park page)

Caution required: creek crossing on Lower Creek circuit at Joalah

Corbould and Cedar Creek fire trails closed due to ex-tropical cyclone Debbie

Northern Rivers national parks alerts

Border Ranges National Park  Last reviewed: Thu 06 Apr 2017, 1.29pm.

Tweed Range Scenic Drive and Brindle Creek Loop Road are closed due to affects of Tropical Cyclone Debbie. Sheepstation Creek campground is open and can only be accessed via Lynches Creek Road from Wiangaree.  All walking tracks will remain closed until further assessment. This closure may be extended and any extension will be posted as soon as possible.

Mooball National Park  Last reviewed: Fri 07 Apr 2017, 12.36pm.

This park is closed due to storm damage associated with ex tropical cyclone Debbie, unless the closure is otherwise extended or removed.

Mount Clunie National Park Last reviewed: Tue 31 May 2016, 10.12am.

Mt Clunie road is closed until further notice due to a collapsed bridge. There is a locked gate and access is restricted.

Mount Jerusalem National Park Last reviewed: Fri 07 Apr 2017, 12.00pm.

This park is closed due to storm damage and blockages related to trees and landslips. This closure remains in place unless otherwise extended or removed.

Nightcap National Park / Whian Whian State Conservation Area  Last reviewed: Fri 07 Apr 2017, 4.07pm.

Terania Creek picnic area, Protestors Falls and various walking tracks in Nightcap National Park and Whian Whian State Conservation Area are closed due to flooding. This closure may be extended and any extension will be posted as soon as possible.

Minyon Grass and Minyon Falls picnic areas remain open. Rummery Park campground is also open.

Please drive safely and be aware of road conditions.

Toonumbar National Park  Last reviewed: Fri 07 Apr 2017, 12.36pm.

This park is closed due to storm damage associated with ex tropical cyclone Debbie, unless the closure is otherwise extended or removed.  For more information, please contact the NPWS Tweed-Kyogle area office on (02) 6632 0000 (Kyogle) or (02) 6670 8600 (Murwillumbah)

Wollumbin National Park Last reviewed: Fri 07 Apr 2017, 12.36pm.

This park is closed due to storm damage, unless the closure is otherwise extended or removed. … The Wollumbin / Mount Warning Summit walk is closed due to storm damage.

See Gold Coast hinterland national parks alerts at https://www.npsr.qld.gov.au/park-alerts and NSW NPWS Alerts at http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/alerts/alerts-list for full details.

Alternative Attractions to National Parks

See also Big Volcano Regional Tourist and Visitor Guide or blog posts: Wollumbin National Park closed for other options, and also Mt Warning Climb Alternatives, two 2013 posts offering some other choices to a climb or rainforest walk.  (Some of these suggestions will be closed as above.)

Murwillumbah Museum reopens

Last days to see breastplate exhibition
Tweed Regional Museum Murwillumbah reopened yesterday – Tuesday 17th January, 2017, after a temporary closure as a safety precaution during repairs to the building’s air conditioning system.

The Queensland Road facility was closed last week after a piece of the air conditioner ceiling ducting became loose, prompting concerns about public safety.

A solution to secure the ducting, to protect the safety of visitors and staff, has been put in place by Monday as an interim measure until full repairs to the air conditioning system can be completed.

Breastplates exhibition ends this Saturday

Only a few days remain to see one of the Museum’s most significant and thought-provoking exhibitions – of breastplates given to Aboriginal people associated with the Northern Rivers in the late 1800s and early 1900s – before the display ends this Saturday.

Current exhibitions also include some of the most beautiful butterflies from Australia, Asia and South America, featured in the Collector’s Cabinet until 25 February.

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Tweed Regional Museum Murwillumbah is located at 2 Queensland Rd, Murwillumbah and is open Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 4pm.

For further information about the Museum visit http://museum.tweed.nsw.gov.au/ or http://www.bigvolcano.com.au/community/trhs/index.html 

Photo captions:
1. Only a few days remain to see the thought-provoking Aboriginal breastplates exhibition at Tweed Regional Museum Murwillumbah. Photo by Justin Ealand.
2. The Richmond Birdwing featured in the Beautiful Butterflies exhibition on display in the Collector’s Cabinet until 25 February. Photo by Trevor Worden.

Don’t Flush! Council welcomes wet wipe legal action

Wipes in pipes clogging sewer systems

Tweed Shire Council (TSC) has welcomed news that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has launched legal action against the manufacturers of ‘flushable’ wet wipes.

The ACCC is taking legal action against two manufacturers on the grounds that labelling the wipes ‘flushable’ is misleading, as it suggests consumers can safely flush them down the toilet.

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“This is great news not only for Tweed Shire Council but for all local government and water authorities worldwide,” said Manager Water and Wastewater Anthony Burnham.

“Wet wipes clogging our sewers and breaking our pumps is one of the daily challenges we face in keeping the Tweed’s sewer system operating.

“Every day we are called to an average of 20 blockages and most of them are caused by materials that should never be flushed, including wet wipes.

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Photo:  Water Engineer Elizabeth Seidl demonstrates that wet wipes do not break down (jar on left) like toilet paper does (jar on right). The wipe has remained intact in the water for five months to date.

“Australia-wide, the wet wipes problem is estimated to be costing the community up to $15 million a year in fees to remove the items from sewers, pump stations and treatment plants.”

Here in the Tweed, it takes two workers and a truck up to two hours to clear a blockage.

For each blockage, Council fitters have to travel to site, lift the pump with a crane truck, dismantle the pump, remove the blockage, re-assemble the pump and put the station back on line.

“Every time there is a blockage we also risk damaging the pump, the pipework and the electrical equipment, not to mention the excess power used by the pump trying to push the blockage through,” said Mr Burnham.

Council believes the legal action is a step forward in tackling the issue of consumers flushing these products, which do not break down.

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Photo: Reticulation Assistant Darryn Gunton fishes wet wipes and nappies from a sewer manhole at Murwillumbah.

“The next step is to educate consumers to keep wipes out of our pipes,” said Mr Burnham.

“It’s a message we hope will be heard loud and clear because if that blockage occurs on private property, it is the property owner who has to pay to unblock it. Then there’s the risk of raw sewerage overflow into neighbouring properties or the environment.”

Other items that should never be flushed are women’s sanitary products, medical dressings, cotton buds, condoms, colostomy bags and disposable nappies.

These materials should be bagged and disposed of in a rubbish bin.

To view media releases online visit http://www.tweed.nsw.gov.au/MediaCentre/MediaCentre.aspx
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Teaming up to fight bank erosion and weeds

Tweed Shire Council will work with participating private landowners to improve the health of the Rous River between Chillingham and Murwillumbah over the next three years, thanks to $100,000 in funding through the NSW Environmental Trust. 

The NSW Environmental Trust grant was announced last week by the Minister for Environment and Heritage, Mark Speakman and Member for Lismore, Thomas George. The grant will be matched by funds from Tweed Shire Council.

Rous_River_health_112517_640 Photo:  The health of the Rous River will be improved through a NSW Environmental Trust grant, matched by funding from Tweed Shire Council

Council Project Officer – Waterways, Matthew Bloor, said the Rous River has high conservation values and is located in a highly valuable agricultural landscape.  “Bank erosion and environmental weeds are having a big impact on the river but also threaten the values of adjacent land,” Mr Bloor said.

“In recognition of Council’s work with private landowners through its River Health Grants program, the NSW Environmental Trust has offered Council $100,000 to work with landowners to protect, restore and connect native riparian vegetation along the Rous River.”

Participating landowners will be eligible to receive assistance for stock fencing and watering infrastructure, weed control, bush regeneration, revegetation and bank erosion. Landowners will also receive management advice and restoration plans for their river bank based on current condition and use.

“Waterway health is directly related to the condition of banks and adjacent land. Landowners who take an active role in protecting the health of our waterways supply a vital service to the community and should be supported to do this.

“River Health Grants have supported around 160 landowners to improve over 65 kilometres of waterways in the Tweed Shire over the last 10 years. Council will match the Environmental Trust grant with $100,000 through this program to maximise the benefits this project will bring to the Rous River.”

Council to look into establishing a canoe trail along scenic Rous River

Council will also investigate establishing a canoe trail along the Rous River to promote the recreational use of the Rous River.

“Tidal reaches from Boat Harbour to Tumbulgum can be paddled year round.  Exploring our waterways in a canoe or kayak is a fun and healthy activity and great way to appreciate the unique environment of the Tweed Shire,” Mr Bloor said.

For more information contact Matthew Bloor, Project Officer – Waterways on (02) 6670 2580 or email mbloor@tweed.nsw.gov.au

Courtesy: Tweed Shire Council Newsroom
Tuesday 31 May, 2016
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See also Big Volcano Visitor Guide / Volcano Towns / Murwillumbah and / Volcano Villages / Chillingham

Good news for Pottsville’s endangered koalas

A new koala project in the Pottsville Wetland will encourage community involvement to help protect and restore koala habitat.

A_koala_160834_640Photo: A koala in a newly planted tree shows how restoring koala habitat can help populations recover

The project will be funded by a grant of $99,283 over three years from the NSW Environmental Trust and a Tweed Shire Council cash and in-kind contribution of $170,000.

NSW Minister for Environment and Heritage, Mark Speakman announced the grant onsite at Pottsville on Monday 25th May.

The project aims to:

  • Increase primary koala habitat within and adjacent to the Pottsville Wetland
  • Reduce threats to koalas from domestic dogs
  • Reduce threats to other threatened fauna (such as ground nesting birds) from foxes and cats
  • Improve habitat condition and reduce weeds
  • Improve fire management
  • Involve the community and schools through koala conservation activities

Council’s Director Community and Natural Resources, Tracey Stinson, welcomed the funding.  “The Tweed Coast’s koala community was recently declared endangered by the NSW Scientific Committee, which just highlights the importance of projects such as this,” Ms Stinson said.

“Pottsville Wetland is a unique environmental asset at the back door of the Pottsville community that provides critical habitat for the declining Tweed Coast koala population,” Council’s Director Community and Natural Resources, Tracey Stinson, said.

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Photo: An aerial view of the Pottsville Wetland which provides critical habitat for the declining Tweed Coast koala population

“As part of this project, we will engage with the community and encourage the active involvement of neighbours of the Pottsville Wetland and the broader community, so we can work together to protect and enhance Pottsville Wetland and its koalas.”

“As a bonus, this project will also benefit a host of other threatened species and Endangered Ecological Communities at this site as well as complementing similar actions Council is undertaking across 268 hectares of its adjoining coastal koala reserve system at Pottsville,” she said.

This project will form part of the overall Comprehensive Koala Plan of Management to help the Tweed Coast koala population recover to more sustainable levels over the next 20 years. For more information see www.tweed.nsw.gov.au/Koalas

Courtesy: Tweed Shire Council Newsroom
Thursday 26 May, 2016
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See also: Big Volcano Visitor Guide / Volcano Villages / Cabarita, Pottsville Beach & Hastings Point

A few of your favourite things

Mullumbimby artist Oksana Waterfall showcasing work at Tweed Regional Gallery.

Lelli_2015_thr142809_640Photo:  Lelli (detail) 2015, graphite, thread and found object on paper

Hailing from Mullumbimby, artist Oksana Waterfall’s  showcase “Object of Affection”, is a series of works on display until Sunday 10 July 2016 at Tweed Regional Gallery, that explores how people select their most treasured items.

Reflecting the artist’s Ukrainian heritage, where intricate embroidered fabric is often regarded as a family heirloom, Ms Waterfall said that “It is the thread of memory for me and I have incorporated it into each work… a thread that binds me to my culture and my past, and a thread of mark-making that links all the works in the series”.

She said her long and abiding interest in people and the objects they bonded with in the course of their lives were part of the inspiration for her work.  “We all tend to accumulate things as we move through the world,” she said.

“Amongst the myriad of objects that pass through our hands, there are some that seem to exert a special attraction and influence over us.  “As an artist, it intrigues me that people often cling to the mundane as valuable; this can be an object from their childhood or a present from a friend, sometimes without intrinsic value except to the owner,” she said.

“It can be commonplace or uncommon, rare or simply charged with the value of personal use.”  The artist said patterns and stories started to emerge amongst the myriad of random objects.

“We can tell a lot about the owners from the objects they choose as sentiment finds its way into their choices and mundane objects become supercharged with emotions and distilled memories,” Ms Waterfall said.

Gallery Director Susi Muddiman said visitors would be intrigued by the seemingly simple works. “Closer observations reveal the intricate detail involved in Oksana’s practice,” Ms Muddiman commented.

“She tells the story of people through the things they selected and the things they treasure. She specifically asks people to nominate the objects that are most precious to them. “Surprisingly, people didn’t always select the most valuable thing they own and these often remain as impersonal objects to them.

“It is often object, plus memory, that equals a favourite thing.”

Courtesy: Tweed Shire Council Newsroom
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See also: Big Volcano Visitor GuideTweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre