Time to head for the hills

>As we cast an eye towards our west, the mountainous backdrop that frames our bush capital sets the tenor, the tone of life here in the nation’s capital.

These mountains shape our urban existence providing crystal clear drinking water, a cool sanctuary on a hot summer’s day, a place to recharge.

A spectacular landscape in which we can simply immerse ourselves.

Evidence suggests that being absorbed in a mountainous landscape can help alleviate the stresses and strains of a modern busy lifestyle. Mountains can provide inspiration, a real sense of perspective.

Mountains, like nature, can indeed nurture the mind, the body, the soul.

With temperatures rising and the days getting longer, there is more than just a hint of summer in the air. Now is the perfect time to head for the hills.

After a snow-covered winter, the mountains are blooming with a profusion of color. A rich tapestry of endemic native species forms a stunning visual display.

To get the most from your wildflower mountain experience, pick up a field guide from the Namadgi Visitor Information Centre. Beautifully illustrated, authored by subject matter experts, these highly informative guides are a wonderful companion to any wildflower walk.

If you are looking for a rewarding, yet invigorating hike, Stockyard Spur is for you. Your gateway to the mountains is nestled at the end of Corin Dam Road. As you rise over 800 metres, pause to soak up the spectacular views across the Bimberi Wilderness area of Namadgi National Park.

Beneath your feet you’ll find a kaleidoscope of Mountain Pink Bells, Alpine Shaggy Peas and Billy Buttons complementing a vast array of stunning native orchids. Collectively, they form an incredible carpet of wildflowers.

Looking to drive?  Head for the mountains via the Brindabella Road out past the Cotter. Once you are on the Mt Franklin Road, pull over at the historic Mt Franklin Interpretative Shelter, the site of the former Franklin Ski Chalet. Revel in the eye catching display of the delicate Rice Flower, discover the intriguing Trigger Plant and be amazed by the stunning Purple Eyebrights that abound. A short walk to the summit of Mt Franklin won’t disappoint.

From Mt Franklin, hop back in your car and follow the road to the top of Mt Ginini. The incredible view will leave you wondering why you haven’t been to this special part of the world before.

With a spectacular concoction of colour, cool crisp air and breathtaking scenery, the mountains are calling this summer. You must go.

Photo caption:  After a snow-capped winter, the mountains are blooming such as these spring flowers on Mt Gingera. Photo by Michael Maconachie.

Brett McNamara is with ACT Parks & Conservation Service.

Brett Mac

Brett McNamara - Regional Manager with ACT Parks & Conservation Service

Brett loves our national parks almost as much as the Gang-gang on his uniform. He is prone to using the word 'majestic' when referring to the bush capital. He loves talking. A lot. His favourite animal is the playful platypus.

Article also appeared on 6 November 2018 in The Chronicle