As Cyclone Ita worked her way to the coast and then followed it south she whipped up the place with some cyclonic winds and dumped a load of rain on the area. She hit the coast as a category 4 (the highest is a 5) and then decreased down to a category 3 but not before ravaging Hopevale and Cooktown. From all reports everyone up there thought they got of very lightly and the damage doesn't look too widespread. By the time she made it down to the Cairns area she was down to a category 1. Now the joke that goes around is that unless it is above a category 1 or 2 cyclone the locals don't bother about it. I can tell you why. A category 1 cyclone is like a windy, rainy day. I have see worse storms in other areas. A category 5 cyclone (which was what was predicted and coming until Ita lost strength is another matter).
Now the deluge of rain she dumped in places did cause some flooding that ultimately cut the main highway to North QLD. It reopened today, the rail yesterday. This meant that until last night/ today there was no new produce, groceries or anything else that gets shipped up here. The shops did well though. Yes, there was a shortage of milk, water, tinned goods, noodles and anything else people rushed out to buy 'just in case' Ita turned up to do her worst. But the thing is everyone should have had them in their house, that is why there was none left in the shops.
Now a couple of days didn't hurt anyone but sometimes is can be a lot longer. Our very smart premier decided to tell everyone of the north what they already knew, have know for years, that when there is flooding nothing comes into the North (really, he is smart). He also decided a new route needs to be built to get here. Well I have some solutions for him ...
1. Don't send everything grown/made up in the North down South and then proceed to bring it back to put in the shops.
2. Bitumen the road between Charters Towers and the Atherton Tablelands tada! new route made.
3. Don't build roads and railway lines on flood prone areas and if you are going to, build them higher then the highest known flood.
4. Send it by boat, that is how everything gets to the Islands of North QLD
5. Who cares, people have lived with it for years.
Okay so I think that is enough blahing and time for me to throw up some pictures.
Walsh's Pyramid South of Cairns now has very visible waterfalls flowing down it (not so visible in this picture) and some paddocks of sugar cane are now looking a bit tousled or a bit flatter. Mr Sparky said most of it should be okay because it is older and tougher then if it got hit earlier.
The Gillies Highway/ range, the Kuranda Range, the highway North and the highway heading South were all closed but not for too long.
The Mulgrave River swelled almost making it over the Gillies Highway.
By Sunday morning it had already started going down.
But like all rivers and creeks in the areas had a new, rushing lease on life.
The Gillies Range was shedding water with waterfalls found all along the road. There are a few hundred drains that go under the road from these waterfalls to stop them going over the road.
There were also some mini rock slides but nothing too major.
It was amazing to see the Gillies Range with a slightly different look on. So much water and so many waterfalls.
Other then the water in rivers, creeks and the new waterfalls even on the Tablelands it was hard to tell there had been that much rain, let alone a cyclone. We went back down the Kuranda Range and the North certainly copped it a bit more then the South but even then it wasn't too bad.
More waterfall photos to come but of a different waterfall.