Friday, 11 February 2011

Chillagoe: A Karst of Thousands

Sorry for the title.

The helicopter tree (Gyrocarpus americanus) is a common species on limestone at Chillagoe. Most individuals had lost their leaves, but still managed to look windswept and interesting with their golden bark.


No, really. The bark is a lot more attractive than it appears in this picture. Think of it as Gyrocarpus's passport photo.

Two species of kurrajong are abundant here. This is the Chillagoe kurrajong (Brachychiton chillagoensis), which is also found in the Undara region. I produced a more detailed post about this and the widespread Brachychiton australis during my last trip to Chillagoe.

The dark bark of Brachychiton chillagoensis sets off the pale leaves.

There's more karst to come ...

14 comments:

Sherrie Y said...

Never, ever apologize for an eye-rolling title. Some days eye-rolling is the only exercise I get. No schist.

Snail said...

Sometimes it's easy to take it for granite.

budak said...

i has tree roodrawal syndrome

forestwalk/laura k said...

love that tree's passport photo...
and the rock formations!!

are there caves there?
...and i don't get it...what about the title? why an eye roll? my brows are furrowed in question...
i'm a little slow...or...it's a little early...or...a bit of both!

Ben and Carrie Tracks said...

What an incredible tree--- we had never heard of it before...the things you learn from blogging eh?

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Snail.
I am more taken with the rock. Didn't know you did limestone there.
Is it close t your place, or have you been blown off course, by Yasi?
Denis

biobabbler said...

Who can resist "A Karst of Thousands"? Not me. =) Good stuff.

Snail said...

Budak, am about to sort that out!

Snail said...

Laura, there are plenty of caves in the Chillagoe - Mungana area, some of which are easily accessible. Don't furrow your brow too much over the title! It's a weak pun on limestone karst formations and cast of thousands. Also, it doesn't actually make sense. But it was more logical than the alternative ---- 'karsting the runes' (or ruins).

Snail said...

Ben and Carrie, I'm learning a lot as I go. I must get back up to Chillagoe when Gyrocarpus is lovely and leafy. Should be easy to spot. That bark is unmistakeable. (Now watch me misidentify it next time!)

Snail said...

Denis, there's not much limestone in FNQ. Chillagoe - Mungana is the biggest occurrence in the area. It's WNW of me, about 200km by road. So not too far away.

Snail said...

Biobabbler, I think it's fortunate that I have run out of karst puns. I may have to move onto lime-based humour.

Denis Wilson said...

Thanks for the clarification.
Just a short ride with a Mary Poppins Umbrella on a Cyclone, eh?

I had never associated FNQ with Limestone.
Cheers
Denis

Snail said...

:) Just checked the atlas and it's about 125km as the nanny flies.

There is a little bit more limestone further west at Camooweal and Lawn Hill/Riversleigh, but I haven't been to either of those places. A bit more of an effort than a day trip!

There's also limestone inland from Townsville, but it's nowhere as extensive as it is along the S coast.