New Year's Eve in Daintree

Friday, December 30, 1988
Daintree, Queensland, Australia
Dec 30
Set of flooking for Smith Creek junction . Went across falls. I blazed a trail through rainforest creek, uphill, and we found 2 glider-cut trees.
1230h lunch on hill slope under rocks as raining (this is rainforest remember?)
1430 collected water samples at Smith Creek, a place we named Glider Falls for its evidence of gliders.
!605h returned in the rain and cooked dinner of rice, tuna, veg, soup. Dried clothing with Alex. I had one yellow, sleeveless t-shirt one pair of green shorts, both cotton, which I wore throughout the expedition. In morning, would put on the t-shirt even when damp as it would soon be soaked in sweat or dry up on my body if not hiking.
Slept early 2100h.

Dec 31
0600h woken by mossies buzzing around my netted head. Unlike Alex and some others who had a full-bodied net rigged up within the tent, I only carried a head net. I shared a tent with Alex most of time and he laughed at me swatting at mosquitoes every morning. I washed and started a fire. Breakfast of oats with milk prepared by Alex. The mood this morning was decidedly sombre . I can think of a few reasons - it is wet, there are dark clouds blowing over this gorge, our food is not great; even if we get resupplied today, it would not be abundant nor delightfully different, there is no definitive and interesting objective, a repeat of yesterday's laborious trail blazing through the wet and steep undergrowth hills is not something to look forward to on a new year's eve.
0850h set off on cattle track going up steeply, saw river/falls and hilll in transit. Walked gradually up along ridge.
1205h lunched below peak. Saw most magnificent view from hill slope of rock overlooking East at over 1000m altitude. Kept going up, then did a loop. Was blazing trail all along, had problem establishing position. Saw 3 glider-cut trees today.
1600h cut across gully to other ridge. Walked along cattle track till hit the Smith Creek ridge, followed it down. It was a round trip on the ridges between the Daintree and Smith Creek.
1715h arrived back in BC to see support group arriving (the reason we chose in opposite direction, with food! All were bushed and all of us had a swim in the pool by the falls.
Other than victuals, the support group also brought mail. I received cards from Pui Lin and Esther in Geelong. And the NEWS was that I was accepted into ANU for a Graduate Diploma course.
Cooked a damper with sultanas, sugar, milk, cinnamon, and waited for the New Year around a fire. We applied Daylight Saving time (i.e. 1 hr earlier than Qld time). Chris from support group even brought a bottle of champagne (no wonder they were bushed). Weather held throughout tonight.
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