In Ancient Footsteps

Mossman Gorge, 20 km north of Port Douglas in far north Queensland, is part of the World Heritage listed Daintree Rainforest. The Kuku Yalanji people, whose ancestors have lived here for thousands of years, manage the gorge and the visitor centre.

P1040984A walk through the gorge begins on a wide boardwalk raised over creek beds and the forest floor. The path leads to a suspension bridge over the Mossman River, swollen after unseasonal rain has fallen in the mountains.

P1040977When the boardwalk ends the track becomes rougher, rocks and tree roots create hazards for the unwary and at times the path almost merges with the forest.

The circuit passes ancient stands of trees and strangler figs which have long ago taken over their hosts. On the forest floor, richly coloured fungi glow like jewels. The sound of the river rushing over massive granite boulders combines with the song of unseen birds hiding high in the canopy.

With pristine waters and lush vegetation, this rainforest landscape is the much the same now as it was when the Kuku Yalanji lived here. It’s almost as if they’ve just walked by.


14 thoughts on “In Ancient Footsteps

    • Instead of the usual four seasons there are only two in the north – the wet and the dry. The dry season is pleasant, mid 20s and the wet season is hotter, low to mid 30s. It isn’t humid in the dry season but come the wet season and the humidity is very high. It’s funny how quickly you get used to it though. We lived in Darwin in the 1980s and the first wet season we really felt it but the second wet season we hardly noticed. There are problems with mosquitoes but we didn’t see any when we were there in July.


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