Last night we went to MacDonald  National Park to see if we could film, in spite of the park being closed to the public following the passage of ex-cyclone Oswald. The gravel path near the entrance was washed away and debris littered the ground. The going was most unsteady, so we abandoned our quest after walking about 150 metres. We agreed to try Palm Grove, having already accessed The Knoll and Joalah after the storm. It too was closed, but we ducked under the tape and kept walking. There appeared to be no damage to the path. After a while we saw an exquisite green moth hanging from a twig. Hugh and I went back to the car to get my camera while Mark stayed with the moth, which I duly filmed on my return. We continued on our way, encountering several pademelons which were too elusive for me to film.

My worst premonition was confirmed when we saw the vast bulk of perhaps the mountain’s grandest tree, the leaning Moreton Bay Fig, blocking the path. Tragically it had been uprooted by Oswald. Today, I returned to film it and pay it homage. The tree had created a large clearing in its fall. I once wrote that its incline was such that had it been the Leaning Tower of Pisa it would have been a heap of rubble. Instead, some of its roots dropped down from the trunk in such a way that one could walk between it and them, providing ingenious support to the tree. Thankfully all the visible large trees on the up and down slopes of the path remained in place. Unfortunately the rain which threatened at the start of my walk, started to fall before I could finish filming, necessitating another visit with the attendant risk of leeches. Though today I only flicked one leech off my sock when I got out of the car back at my place.