Category 5 Tropical Cyclone Yasi left quite an impact on the ancient Daintree Rainforest. On an underlying frequency of one every fifty years, 2.7-million Category 5 cyclones would have wrought their impacts upon the Daintree Rainforest over its 135-million year existence. As has previously been described, cyclones dislodge a significant proportion of canopy to the forest floor, permitting a temporary increase in sunlight onto a nutrient super-rich forest floor, bringing a consequential flowering and fruiting that is otherwise unparalleled in its benefits to the population interests of rainforest inhabitants.
Cyclones can cause disruption to trail networks and Cooper Creek Wilderness got to work re-establishing thoroughfare where it was severed almost as soon as the initial clean-up began. The final difficulty has now been overcome with the re-establishment of the 3-hour Greater Wilderness experience.
Two major amendments have been incorporated and in both instances the improvements are fantastic. Firstly, a section in the middle reach of the three-hour experience suffered major damage. Re-defining thoroughfare was not easy. A radical deviation took the route into largely unchartered territory, bypassing the entire area of collapsed giants. The result traverses an ephemeral watercourse and follows fan-palm dominated open forest with completely different habitat values (and feel), adding another vegetation community to the mosaic of experiences already included.
The second major variation had long posed a challenge for the safe traversing of a major watercourse with (perhaps) 10-metre high embankments. In conditions that were ideal for a spectacular suspension bridge, a more gentle, natural descent was established by following the watercourse along its high bank for 100-metres or so, to reach a natural promentory that ramped down into a tight elbow bend in the water course. The final run is only about a metre wide with great views up and down the same watercourse. The trail climbs a simple ascent back into the pristine grandeur of old-growth rainforest, at the halfway point in the journey.
Overall, these amendments make the Greater Wilderness experience significantly better than its former glory.