2017 Brown Signs

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2017 is the year Brown Signs was first published. It wasn’t until late in 2017, but the hunt began in 2016. As 2018 begins, we have a look back on what has been added to the Brown Signs destinations list, the types of destinations, and which ones where the highlights.

The first destination of the year was Wombeyan Caves in NSW, on the 1st of January, having initiating the Brown Signs idea 7 days prior. It was the first time going to Wombeyan Caves, in spite having driven passed it a number of times and never stopping. It was fitting to start 2017 visiting a brown sign that I have often wondered what they are like when passing the signs, but never went there.

Only 6 additional destinations were visited until November, when the website was brought online. Sign hunting started properly in Bundaberg and surrounding areas, while in the area visiting family, adding another 9 destinations in 3 days. I didn’t go to the destinations simply because I wanted to go, I went because there was a brown sign. This brought Brown Sign’s destination count passed 25.

December saw the first dedicated brown sign hunting trip, planning to follow the Bunya Tourist Drive, the trip was shorted due to restrictions on dates and family issues that required returning home earlier than the time required to do the entire planned route. It was a successful trip, finding more than expected, with a total of 29 additional destinations to add to 2017, and the destination count passed 50 before the year ended (they were not published until January 2018).

Between Christmas and New Year’s, an opportunity to take my brother and his partner through the Falls Drive came up. We were camping along with my parents, cousins, their children, and my two boys, at Flanagan’s Reserve – another brown sign destination. On our way home, me and the boys checked out another 3 destinations to add a total of 10 more to the listing count. 2017’s destinations took the total published destinations to 74.

Categories of destinations are difficult to define sometimes, as destinations can often fit into more than one category, but each destination is assigned to only one. Including destinations before 2017, the most common categories are historical, lookouts and museums, with historical on top. Some categories were only just created late in 2017, so it will be interesting to see how they shape up by the end of 2018.

Below are all the destinations from 2017:

  • Wombeyan Caves – The Wombeyan Caves are limestone caves in the Wombeyan Karst Conservation Reserve, created from over 400 million years
  • Moonbi Park and Lookout – Moonbi Park and Lookout is north of Moonbi just off the New England Hwy, views over Moonbi township and Cockburn Valley, free camp
  • Mother of Ducks Lagoon – Mother of Ducks Lagoon is a nature reserve at Guyra, a rare breeding place for several freshwater wetland birds, with an overnight free camp area
  • Osprey House – The Osprey House is an environmental centre that provides a natural environment for osprey and other local fauna, and an osprey nest with a cam
  • Bullocky Rest – Bullocky Rest is a day use area on Lake Samsonvale, with plenty of space, lots of BBQs and sheltered tables
  • Aussie World – Aussie World is a family oriented theme park at Palmview on the Sunshine Coast, north of Brisbane
  • Wild Horse Mountain – Wild Horse Mountain Lookout with 360 degree views including Glasshouse Mountains, and towards Brisbane, Redcliffe, Moreton Island, Bribie Island, and more
  • Fairymead House – Fairymead House is an old plantation house built in the late 1800s, now showcases the history of the sugar industry, and the pioneering families
  • Schmeider’s Cooperage – Schmeider’s Cooperage is not far from the Bundaberg Rum Distillery, learn about the process of making kegs
  • The Hummock – The Hummock is a hill with a lookout in an otherwise very flat Bundaberg and surrounds, the weathered remains of a small basaltic volcano
  • Barolin Point Dive Site – Barolin Point Dive Site is a rocky outcrop along the coast at Coral Cove, a popular shore based diving site
  • Barolin Homestead Historic Site – Barolin Homestead was originally built by Nugent Wade Brown in the 1875. Subdivided by the Innes family, starting the town Innes Park
  • Lavender Farm – Amandine Lavender is a small family owned and operated lavender farm near Bargara. A gift shop has many lavender gifts, including locally made
  • Mon Repos Beach Turtle Rookery – Mon Repos Regional Park is on the coast between Bargara and Burnett Heads, with the Mon Repos Turtle Centre, and Mon Repos Turtle Encounters
  • Historical Burnett Heads Lighthouse – The Historical Burnett Heads Lighthouse is the original lighthouse at Burnett Heads from 1873
  • Bundaberg Railway Museum – The Bundaberg Railway Museum is the original train station for Bundaberg, with a collection of railway memorabilia and a variety of carriages
  • Tinchi Tamba Wetlands -Tinchi Tamba Wetlands is on the North Pine River. Tinchi Tamba is named after the Aboriginal words for ibis and mangroves
  • Chimney – Chimney is the remains of the Mount Clara Smelter built in 1873, one of the earliest to be built in Queensland
  • Kilkivan Museum – Kilkivan Museum contains a display of ore and mineral samples common to the district, other mining related exhibits and artefacts, and historical room displays
  • Rail Trail – Kilkivan – The Kilkivan to Kingaroy Rail Trail is a shared-use path re-used from abandoned railway corridor, walking, bike riding, horse riding
  • Kinbombi Falls – The falls is a cascade of falls through a rocky gorge along the Kinbombi Creek, with a free rest area and picnic grounds
  • Policeman’s Hill – Policeman’s Hill is the hill used during the Goomeri Pumpkin Festival, an annual event held on the last Sunday in May
  • Boat Mountain Conservation Park – Boat Mountain Conservation Park is west of Goomeri and north of Murgon, with Braithwaite’s Lookout, Daniel’s Lookout, and Silburn Vine Scrub walk
  • Jack Smith Scrub – Jack Smith Scrub Conservation Park is a small softwood scrub in an area once a vast dry rainforest, mostly cleared for agriculture use
  • Queensland Dairy & Heritage Museum – The Queensland Dairy & Heritage Museum has displays on the dairy industry, including memorabilia of the dairy industry, and heritage displays from the local area
  • Allan “Snow” Huston Memorial Park – Allan “Snow” Huston Memorial Park is between Murgon and Wondai along the Bunya Highway, a quiet rest stop away from the Bunya Highway
  • Ficks Crossing – On the banks of Barambah Creek, Fick’s Crossing is a nice spot to stop for a break or stay for a while
  • Wondai Heritage Museum – The Wondai Heritage Museum has a variety of heritage collections, with a formal collection, hospital theatre, machinery, and themed rooms
  • Timber Museum – The Timber Museum in Wondai is part of the Wondai Visitor Information Centre. Inside is a timber display depicting early life in the timber industry
  • Wooroolin Wetlands – The Wooroolin Wetlands is a palustrine wetland (inland without flowing water), with a walking trail and bird hide
  • Gordonbrook Dam – Gordonbrook Dam is the water supply to Kingaroy, with a day use area, walking trails and bird hide
  • Mount Wooroolin – Mount Wooroolin Lookout is just over 4km west of Kingaroy, park at the lookout or walk the trail from below the mountain to the top
  • Kingaroy Heritage Museum – The Kingaroy Heritage Museum is adjoined to the Kingaroy Information Centre, with machinery from the peanut industry, and other heritage items from the area
  • Kingaroy Observatory – Kingaroy Observatory provides day and night shows of the sky, moon, planets, sun and the solar system
  • Bora Ring – Coolabunia – A bora ring is a circle or oval shape with a raised embankment, used in for important ceremonies in aboriginal culture
  • Pottique Lavender Farm – Pottique Lavender Farm is a cafe and shop with lavender based and other products at Coolabunia near Kingaroy
  • 7 Mile Diggings – Seven Mile Diggings is an old gold fossicking area, with most of the mining taking place from 1876 to 1900. Alluvial gold can still be found
  • Coomba Falls – The Coomba Falls comes through a wide gorge of granite cliffs before falling into a deep waterhole, great for swimming and jumping off the rocks into the deep waterhole
  • Dandabah – Dandabah is one of three three camping areas in the Bunya Mountains National Park, with walking trails through bunya pines in wet and dry rainforests
  • Burtons Well – Burtons Well is a camping area in the Bunya Mountains, and the site of the Burtons Well itself, and access to the walk leading to the top of Mt Kiangarow, the highest peak in the Bunya Mountains
  • Winters Way – Winters Way is of the road built to the Bunya Mountains from the Kumbia side, created by teams including Charlie Winter and his boys
  • Boiling Springs Lookout – Boiling Springs Lookout is a lookout along the Dingo Fence not far from the start of the Dingo Fence
  • Dingo Fence – The start of the 5,600km Dingo Fence near Jandowae, ending in South Australia
  • Army Flying Museum – Located near Oakey, the Australian Army Flying Museum displays include a variety of aircraft and army artefacts and memorabilia
  • Bernborough Statue – Bernborough Statue is of the Australian bred thoroughbred racehorse in the 1940s, one of the five inaugural inductees on the Australian Racing Hall of Fame
  • Laurel Bank Park – Laurel Bank Park is a gardens near the centre of Toowoomba, featuring floral displays, topiary, and scented gardens for the vision impaired
  • Japanese Gardens – Japanese gardens in Toowoomba, named Ju Raku En, which means ‘to enjoy peace and longevity in a public place’
  • Picnic Point – Picnic Point in Toowoomba is on the eastern side on the edge of the Great Dividing Range, looking over the Lockyer Valley and Table Top Mountain, with lookouts, gardens, picnic areas, playground, waterfall, and walks
  • Mt French National Park – Mount French is a volcanic peak near the township of Boonah, with two easy walks to Logans Lookout with views over the Fassifern Valley and Mee-bor-rum circuit with views on the eastern side
  • Flanagan Reserve – Flanagan Reserve is a camping ground in the Scenic Rim overlooked by Mt Maroon, with fresh water Logan River running along the length of it
  • Teviot Falls – Teviot Falls is along the Falls Drive on the edge of the Scenic Rim, close to the border of Queensland and New South Wales. The falls are from the Teviot Brook in Teviot Gap, near the head of the Condamine River between Boonah and Killarney
  • Browns Falls – Browns Falls is a waterfall on Spring Creek, a 15 metre waterfall over basalt columns, along The Falls Drive in the Darling Downs region. It is a rough 600 metre walk along the creek up to the falls
  • Daggs Falls Lookout – Daggs Falls is a plunge waterfall on Spring Creek with a lookout viewing platform at an elevated position of the waterfall, providing a view of the cascading water over the rocks leading to the drop of the falls
  • Queen Mary Falls – Queen Mary Falls is a 40 metre plunge waterfall, located in the Darling Downs region, along The Falls Drive. Walking trails lead to views from the top and to the base of the waterfall
  • Carrs Lookout – Carr’s Lookout is along The Falls Drive on Spring Creek Road, with views across the head of the Condamine River, and mountains in the Scenic Rim region
  • Boonah via White Swamp – White Swamp is an area in New South Wales, near the Queensland border. Once a village containing two general stores, a post office, school, cemetery, and a timber mill, but is now all but disappeared
  • Bigriggan Reserve (Bigriggen Park) – Bigriggen Park is a bush camping ground in the Scenic Rim, between Boonah and Rathdowney. It offers beautifully kept grassy camp grounds, and fresh water flowing along the Logan River running beside it
  • Maroon Dam – Maroon Dam was built to allow expansion of irrigation along Burnett Creek and the Logan River, open for recreational use, boating, jet skiing, water skiing, wake boarding, tubing, canoeing, fishing, and kayaking
  • Flinders Plum Picnic Area – Flinders Plum Picnic Area is within the Flinders-Goolman Conservation Estate. It lies along Sandy Creek, between Mt Blaine and Flinders Peak. Walks to Flinders Peak, Mt Blaine, and the Flinders Goolman Trail
  • Hardings Paddock Picnic Area – Hardings Paddock Picnic Area is within the Flinders-Goolman Conservation Estate with walking trails, accommodating horse riding. It has a day use picnic area, camping area, and stables



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