My secret spot: Kroombit is just tops
MY SECRET SPOT: Brent Taylor has lived in Gladstone for two years - he moved here from Mackay with his partner and three children - but already he knows many of our hidden beauties.
His favourite is Kroombit Tops. The owner of Opposite Lock four wheel drive store hears many stories of popular spots in the region.
"You talk to locals and regular customers about the out-of-the-way spots that they know about and not many others seem to," he said. Here's his story:
KROOMBIT Tops is not on your regular beat and tracks. It's very natural, very preserved up there.
It's a nice drive all the way up through the mountains and grazing lands.
It's the sort of place that you don't need to have an extreme four wheel drive to access and get to.
When you're at the top, it's up so high that the lookouts through the valley are just beautiful.
We normally take a picnic up there. We'll stop off at a couple of different spots.
There's one called the wall, where you can camp.
It's not a big camping area but it's a really nice spot. It's a sheer wall of rock tucked away in a nice little area, and it's very peaceful when there's not a gazillion other people around.
The first time I went was Australia Day last year. It's such a nice spot. Being part of a national park it's very peaceful and a really nice drive to get up there.
We've probably been back three times. We seem to do the same thing each time, but there are a few other spots we could explore if we liked.
Up to Kroombit Tops itself is about one and a half hours' drive from Calliope. If we're going up there with other people we'll meet at the servo.
Often we go by ourselves, but other times we go with other people. My partner and three kids love it.
There's plenty of room that they can get out.
They love being outdoors - they don't have much choice I suppose.
They have plenty of room to run around when we stop off for lunch or smoko. They love collecting sticks and doing what kids do.
Beautiful Betsy - it was a bit of a walk in but it was very nice.
Obviously Betsy is the bomber. The wall is definitely a nice spot.
Along the top of the ridge there's heaps of little spots that you can pull in and get a really nice view along the valley.
There's some good walking spots but I'm a four wheel driver rather than a walker.