Some Gloucester Environment Group walkers met on August 18 to explore an area of Lansdowne Forest just north of Taree. The guide for the day was Noel Barton from the Mid North Coast National Parks Association. Our walk took us into the cool forest with many picturesque mossy creek beds which still had small pools of water running through them despite the lack of rain at that time.
Despite the past logging of the area the forest was full of tall trees looking for light with numerous birds flitting about. There was also still evidence of tree stumps with the telltale cut outs used by loggers. What a magnificent site it would have been to see these trees before they were taken away.
A climb up out of the forest took us to a recently burnt area and a steep climb up to Vincent’s Lookout. Our efforts were rewarded with magnificent views across the Lower Manning Valley towards the ocean and a great spot for lunch.
The adventure continued after lunch with some off track walking through the forest to get back to our starting point and the cars. Bush bashing through the forest was certainly an energy draining experience but definitely a great way to see its beauty. An insight into how it may have been for those early harvesters of our native trees.
We drove back to the nearby Forestry headquarters in Coopernook and sat at picnic tables with warming cups of tea while Noel, an enthusiast of sustaining the history of the Langley Vale Tramway, having done much work to keep the trails passable in the area, provided us with details and history of the area.
The Lansdowne State Forest has a long logging history. Access to prime hardwood was often too difficult until the building of a tramway in the 1890s. Initially the tramway was powered by teams of horses until steam traction was introduced.
The tramways were in use until the 1940s when the industry fell into decline following bushfires, the Depression and closure of the local timber mill. Relics of the tramway still remain, as the group discovered.
Please contact Alison Lyon if you would like any information: email@example.com or call 0409 718 795.
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