Mount Beerburrum Summit, Yul-Yan-Man Track, Jack Ferris Lookout, Trachyte Trail and Return by The Soldier Settlers Trail

Mount Beerburrum Summit, Yul-Yan-Man Track, Jack Ferris Lookout, Trachyte Trail and Return by The Soldier Settlers Trail


Posted 2023-09-19 by Cris follow
Hiking the Glass House Mountains National Park.

The Glass House Mountains National Park boasts a variety of hiking trails on the rugged ancient volcanic peaks.

The peaks are so important that they are protected in the Glass House Mountains National Park and they are so significant that they have been entered on the Queensland and National Heritage Register.

The beautiful peaks are surrounded by a mosaic of pine plantations, bushland, macadamia orchards, pineapple and strawberry fields.

Captain James Cook spotted the peaks when sailing down the east coast of Australia onboard the Endeavour in 1770. The unique peaks reminded him of the glass furnaces in Yorkshire, his hometown back in England and name them Glass House Mountains.

The following extract from Cook's journal on Thursday, 17 May 1770 noted:
"These hills lay but a little way inland and not far from each other, they are very remarkable on account of their singular form of elevation, which very much resemble glass houses which occasioned my giving them that name…"

The peaks and the forests surrounding the mountains offer a variety of vegetation and some of the plants can only be found in the Glass House Mountains. The vegetation provides habitat for wildlife including birds, reptiles and mammals.

Photo was taken on North West Beerwah, in the background Mount Tibrogargan and other Glass House Mountains. Image credit Daren Beaumont

Hiking a Loop in the Glass House Mountains National Park.

Starting at the Beerburrum carpark near the State School, walk to the summit of Mount Beerburrum and climb the fire tower. Descend the trail and follow Yul-yan-man on the rocky escarpment and continue on the Trachyte Circuit and climb up to the Jack Ferris Lookout.

From the lookout return on the Trachyte Circuit until the trail connects with the Soldier Settlers trail, which goes back to Beerburrum carpark.

The circuit is about 12km long, allow 5 hours, including a break for morning tea.

Sketch of the map with the hiking trails.

Mount Beerburrum.

The trail starts near the Beerburrum State School carpark. The distance is 3.5km return, allow about 1.5 hours. Mount Beerburrum is 280m above sea level. In the language of the Indigenous Kabi nation, "bir" means green parrot and "burru" mountain.

After about 1km, the trail gets very steep; the 750m climb to the summit is going to make your muscles work hard. Fitness is required to enjoy the trail.

The track is all sealed and allows to have glimpses through the vegetation of the neighbouring Glass House Mountains and landscapes.

At the beginning, the trail meanders in the wet eucalypt forest and then the vegetation turns into a drier and open forest.

The trail leads to the summit where there is a fire tower that offers great 360-degree views of the surrounding. You can climb on the tower and take photos. The fire tower is important for managing fires in the park.

Mount Beerburrum is a great location for sunrises and sunsets.

Along the trail it is possible to see some of the other Glass House Mountains, here is Mount Tibrogargan.

There are benches to take a break.

At the top of Mount Beerburrum there is a fire tower. It is possible to climb the tower for great views of the surrounding.

Views from the summit, in the background, are Mount Beerwah, Mount Coonowrin, Mount Tibberoowuccum and other mountains.

The views stretch up to the Pumicestone Passage and Bribie Island.

The Group Hiking South East Qld on top of Mount Beerburrum.

Lieutenant Matthew Flinders

Mount Beerburrum is part of the journey on the steps of Matthew Flinders.
Lieutenant Matthew Flinders climbed Mount Beerburrum on the 26 July 1798, together with two seamen and his Aboriginal guide Bongaree.

Lieutenant Matthew Flinders was the first explorer to enter Moreton Bay. He had sailed from Sydney on the HM Sloop Norfolk.

After climbing Mount Beerburrum, Flinders and his party camped overnight by Tibrogargan Creek.

Explorer and Navigator Matthew Flinders.

Bongaree was the Aboriginal who accompanied Matthew Flinders in his explorations. He was the first Australian to circumnavigate the continent.

Yul-Yan-Man Trail.

Descend Mount Beerburrum and at the intersection with Yul-yan-man, turn left. The distance from Beerburrum intersection with Yul-yan-man to the end of the Yul-yan-man trail is about 3.5Km.

The Yul-yan-man trail is classified as grade 5 by the Glass House Mountains National Park, meaning the trail is hard due to the rock scrambling; hiking experience is required and hiking equipment is paramount.

Yul-yan-man in the Kabi Kabi language means “walk slowly”. This is a great concept, take time to enjoy the beautiful views, and the rock scrambling challenges and consider the diversity of the vegetation.

Yul-yan-man trail is very rocky.

Yul-yan-man trail is marked with pink arrows.

Going down a steep section of the Yul-yan-man.

Trachyte Circuit and Jack Ferris Lookout.

Near the end of the Yul-yan-man, the trail intersects the Trachyte Circuit. Walk for about 400m to reach Jack Ferris Lookout where you can enjoy great views over the Glass House Mountains.

Jack Ferris Lookout was built to celebrate the Centenary of Federation. It is named after Jack Ferris, a pioneer of the district, who turned 100 in the centenary year.

The six British colonies of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and Western Australia formed one nation. The Constitution of Australia came into force on 1 January 1901, and the colonies together became the states of the Commonwealth of Australia.

Then retrace your steps back to the Trachyte Circuit and turn left at the intersection.
The Trachyte Circuit connects with the Soldiers Settlers Trail, which leads back to the Beerburrum carpark.

Views from Jack Ferris Lookout, in front is Mount Tibberoowuccum 220m, behind on the left is Mount Beerwah 556m and on the right is Mount Ngungun 263m.

Close Encounter with a Carpet Python.

Just after visiting Jack Ferris Lookout, we come across the biggest and longest carpet phyton we have ever seen! Not just it was very long, certainly more than 2 metres, but it was also very stocky and looked very healthy. A stunning reptile, in full day, probably out hunting. Since the female is bigger than the male, this probably was a female.

The reptile flicked her tongue out multiple times, in order to collect chemicals in the air. She wasn’t particularly concerned about the presence of many humans all busy taking photos and videos and she kept slithering along the trail minding her business.

Encountering wildlife is always very special, adding more meaning to the hike and how paramount is to protect the land for flora and fauna.

A huge carpet python in the scrub.

Ancient Peaks.

The Glass House Mountains were formed about 25 million years ago. They were volcanic plugs, the cores of volcanoes which erupted and buried the existing sandstone landscape.

Gradual weathering eroded away the volcanoes and the softer sandstone, leaving spectacular formations of hard rhyolite and trachyte.

The Glass House Mountains are very old volcanic plugs, the harder rock withstood the action of the sun, water and wind for millions of years.

Soldier Settlers Trail.

The Soldier Settler Trail is about 4km from the intersection with the Trachyte Circuit trail to the Beerburrum carpark.

It is an easy trail, mostly flat, with many plants, flowers and many Banksia species. The spectacular golden candlesticks Banksia spinulosa variety collina can be seen flowering from autumn to spring.

The Soldier Settlers trail section is named for the soldiers who returned home and began settling the area near Beerburrum in 1916.

Intersection of the Trachyte Circuit with Soldier Settlers Trail.

Along the trail there are many species of Banksia.

The Soldier Settlers Trail is easy and flat.

On the top left is Patersonia sericea; on the top right is Hardenbergia violacea, known by the common name of false sarsaparilla and happy wanderer; on the bottom left is Australian native pea flower; on the bottom right is Xanthorrea, endemic of Australia, known with the common name of grass tree.

What to Bring.

Bring with you plenty of water, especially on warm days, 2 litres; food such as sandwiches, tinned meat, dry fruit, fresh fruit, protein bars, small meals such as rice, boiled eggs, and healthy snacks.
Hiking gear: a medium hiking backpack (20L or 25L); hiking clothes: long trousers and shirt with long sleeves are preferable; hiking ankle supportive boots; gaiters; first aid kit; insect repellent (for environmental reasons use the roll-on and the cream; AVOID THE SPRAY, Bushman cream is good); hat, sunscreen, gloves; light raincoat; working torch; tissues; mobile phone; walking poles if you like to use them.

Having the right equipment, food and water, is paramount when hiking in remote areas.

True Story.

The Lone Pine.

On 6 August 1915, the 1st Australian Infantry Division launched a major offensive at Plateau 400 at Gallipoli, Turkey. The ridges were once covered with the Aleppo Pine (Pinus halepensis), however they have been cut down to cover and line trenches, leaving one solitary pine. Hence, it became known as Lone Pine Ridge.

During three days of fighting, the ANZACs lost 2,000 men and the Turks losses were estimated at 7,000.

Lance Corporal Benjamin Charles Smith of the 3rd Battalion sent back several pinecones to his mother in Inverell, New South Wales. Mrs McMullen sowed some of the seeds, about 13 years later. Two seedlings managed to grow and one was presented to the town of Inverell.

The Duke of Gloucester planted the second tree at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.

Sergeant Keith McDowell of the 24th Battalion brought back a pinecone and gave it to his aunt, Mrs Emma Gray, of Warrnambool, Victoria. From the seeds, four seedlings grew and they were planted at several Shrines of Remembrance in Victoria.

In 1990, two trees were taken back to Gallipoli by war veterans who attended the memorial service that marked the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of the Lone Pine Ridge.

Australian troops in the Turkish Lone Pine trenches, captured by the AIF 1st Brigade under Brigadier General Walker. Image credit

Australian Native Stingless Bees.

Near the trailhead to Beerburrum and Yul-yan-man, there are manmade native bees' special beehives to keep the bees cool.

The honey in Australia is produced by European bees which were introduced in the country in the early 1800s.

However, Australia has its own native stingless bees, which have been present since the era of the dinosaurs and have pollinated Australian plants for millions of years.

The Aboriginal people used to collect the honey produced by the native bees and use it as food and medicine. Native honey was also presented to tribal elders as a sign of respect.

Like European bees, native bees have a queen, and workers and produce honey, but in small amounts. Their honey has antimicrobial and antioxidant properties.

Native bees are vulnerable to heat waves. In many parts of the world, artificial hives use a variety of insulation materials that are appropriate for the temperature and geographical region. The insulation of hives for both cold and hot climatic conditions means native bees can now survive in areas where otherwise they would have perished.

Artificial beehive for native bees.

After the Hike.

The General On Beerburrum and Cafe Phillies are opposite the Beerburrum State School, just across the main road.

The General On Beerburrum is a cafe and bakery offering fresh croissants, cold and hot drinks, sweet pastries, pies and sausage rolls.

Next to the General Store is Cafe Phillies on Beerburrum, which has a detailed menu with breakfast and lunch. Both businesses are run by the same family, so you can grab what you prefer and sit down in both venues.

Business Hours of Cafe Phillies: Monday and Tuesday the cafe is closed; all the other days of the week the cafe opens at 7am and closes at 2pm.

The General On Beerburrum is open every day from 6am to 4pm.

Sweet and savoury pies are available every day at the General Store in Beerburrum.

The Ping Gift S Craft and Doll Shop.

Next to the General on Beerburrum is a delightful Pink Shop Oz-Gift Craft and Doll. The shop is privately owned and operated by Glenice Show. There are many lovely dolls and teddy bears and Glenice makes many of the hand made items on sale on the shelves.
A great place to find a special gift for a special person.

Inside the shop there are many adorable handmade items that make great presents.

Intersecting Landscapes.

Intersecting Landscapes, by Glenn Manning and Kathy Daly, 2019, is an art installation, just near the Beerburrum carpark. The piece of art explores layers of history and changing landscapes. References to geology, geography, flora and fauna unique to Beerburrum are presented through a dynamic process of abstraction to engage the viewer's sense of perception.

Familiar forms, textures and evocative colours are interwoven through layers of geological time and contrasting landscapes.

Intersecting Landscapes, by Glenn Manning and Kathy Daly, 2019.

Directions to Beerburrum Trailhead.

From Brisbane City drive on the Bruce Hwy and then turn on the Steve Irwin Way. Turn left onto Beerburrum Rod and once in Beerburrum, turn right into Beerburrum State School, where you can park your car.

The head trail to Beerburrum and Yul-yan-man is near the Beerburrum carpark.

Top Highlights.
Enjoy the 360-degree views from the fire tower on top of Mount Beerburrum.
Encounter the biggest ever carpet python.
Walk in a group with a bunch of great hikers.
Experience nature with the diverse flora and fauna.
Standing on more than 25 million years old volcanic plugs.
Having refreshments at Cafe Phillies sitting outside.

The group having a break and enjoying the views of the peaks.


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261758 - 2023-08-02 10:48:00


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