If I was a ninja looking to double think my opponents I’d put my top secret hidden base at a place called Hidden Valley. Which is probably why the platypus lives there.
Robyn and I had a nice getaway last night with our friends Chris and Julia. They’re visiting from Sydney. We were thinking of a day trip to Magnetic Island today but it’s raining so we decided the rainforest was the best option in this sort of weather. We made the trip via the Herveys Range Heritage Tea Rooms. Where we stopped for a leisurely lunch. They’ve now got baked potatoes on the menu – I think they’re a new addition. They do seem a little expensive though at $10.50 for two potatoes.
I rang the guys at Hidden Valley Cabins on Saturday and booked two cabins for Sunday night. I mentioned we were coming up in my Excel. They laughed. But said it should be ok. They were in the process of filling in pot holes.
10km of dirt road can feel like 100km. Particularly if you have to take the road at about 5km an hour to miss massive puddles, ditches and pot holes. If you’re going to make the drive in an Excel – wait until the road there is sealed by the Charters Towers Regional Council – that’s meant to happen in 2009. So stay tuned.
We made it up in one piece. Hidden Valley is Australia’s first carbon neutral resort. It’s also Australia’s first solar powered resort. Dinner at Hidden Valley is a family affair. We ate with owners Ian, Bonnie and Ross McLennan. Ross’s fiance Chelsea was back in town. All guests there get this kind of hospitality. It was a nice touch. Dinner was good too.
Prior to dinner we took a platypus tour. We didn’t see any platypus. There’d been a fair bit of water running through the areas they knew were platypus habitat so the poor little things had moved. Maybe. Turns out that platypus are the ninjas of the animal world. Here’s a list of their ninja attributes:
1. They have an inbuilt, poisonous, sharp sword on their back right leg. This can inflict pain on humans comparable to a stone fish.
2. They have an immunity to the poison of other platypus swords.
3. They hunt by detecting motion rather than sight, they have thousands of motion sensors on their bills.
4. They are nocturnal.
5. They’re almost invisible at night.
6. Light does not glimmer off their eyes.
7. They create intricate traps for predators in their burrows.
8. They are made for aerodynamic movement.
This morning we hit the waterholes in Paluma – Little Crystal was gushing, and Paradise Lagoon was nice until we got smashed by rain.