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The Scenic Highway of the North
To-day motorists from Atherton (the largest town on the Tableland and centre of the undulating maize country) and from Malanda in the heart of the dairying district, travel the 50 odd miles to the port in less than three hours. Emerald green paspalum grass paddocks, feeding great dairy herds, replace tropical scrub until the road winds through the 1,225 acre reserve surrounding Lake Barrine. Here, in the stillness and silence, oppressive or invigorating according to temperament, giant trees, including kauri pines 25ft in girth and red cedars even larger, grow 150ft to the light.
The passage of the Upper Gate is a solemn matter. Cerberus, in the guise of a large gentleman, supplies the check tickets which will indicate to the keeper of the bottom toil whether the driver has taken the prescribed time on the Range. The two gatekeepers converse by telephone, and the "speed king" must therefore curb his impatience and stifle his exhuberance behind the last curves on the road.
Gillies Highway. Named for Edward William Hesketh (Ted) Heale who planned the route the Gillies Road would take. He was Chairman of Eacham Shire from 1912-1919 & a member of the Cairns Harbour Board 1915-137 including Chairman in 1931-32. Originally called Heale's Outlook, it was named after him in recognition of his persistent efforts to have the Atherton Tableland linked with the port of Cairns. On his death a memorial to him was erected by public subscription at this site but was removed in about 1979 because of vandalism.