Location: Slacks Creek, Queensland

Event: Yowie Sighting

Date: 1980/1

Time: Mid to Late Afternoon

Weather: Mostly sunny



My family moved to the area in 1979 when I was 13. We lived a short walk from Meakin Park, where Scrubby Creek meets Slacks Creek. Though the area had been farmed in the past, there were still thick tracts of bush and swampland along the creeks and wildlife was abundant. My younger neighbour and I used to spend entire days roaming around and exploring as far as the Logan River and Daisy Hill. There were turtles, eels, crayfish, catfish and mullet in the creeks. Snakes, lizards, ducks, quails, sugar gliders, bandicoots and the odd wallaby and echidna were also about. It would have been a 'fat and juicy place' for the prior Indigenous inhabitants, and after completing a brief course in cultural archaeology when I was 14, I recognised an old campsite by fragments of chipped stone very near the junction of the two creeks.


My friend and I were pretty adventurous and had little fear of wading barefoot through chest-high grass or waist-deep through swamps. On this particular day, which would have been during the school holidays in the summer of 1980/81, we waded from Meakin Road through shallow water and very long grass and reeds towards an area that lay on the southeast side of the junction of Paradise Road and the Pacific Highway, and where another creek also entered the system from Mabel Park.


The area must have had heavy machinery through it in the past because we came across vertical concrete 'chimneys' that rose above an underground sewerage pipeline. When we made it to one chimney that was close to where a few houses and properties backed down to the swamp from what is now the populous Valencia Way, we sat down on it for a rest. It would possibly have been around 3 or 4 in the afternoon. I remember sitting there for 10 or 15 minutes, just gazing across a stretch of reeds toward a grove of paperbarks, when something caught my attention by 'winking' in my peripheral vision. While idly chatting with my friend it happened again but I could spot nothing moving. He was sitting to my right and if I looked across to him I could occasionally catch a glimpse through other trees of cars moving along Paradise Road in the near distance. I thought that the 'winks' may have been brief flashes of cars through the paperbark grove as they travelled further along. To determine if this was so, I fixed my eyes on where I thought I had last seen movement and waited.


At the exact spot where I was looking, from the right hand side of a tree (as I faced it), a dark brown, hairy head leant out and looked directly into my eyes. I'm not sure if I said anything, but in one movement I had leapt up, swung around, and bolted for the Pacific Highway. I cleared a barbed wire fence at a jump and raced through somebody's property until I reached the road breathless, shivering and nearly in tears.


My friend caught up, not having a clue what had happened, and walked me home the long way as I tried to explain what I had seen.


To the best of my memory, and I thought on it deeply over the following weeks, this is what I saw. A head that was a little smaller than an adult human, covered in mid to dark brown hair that seemed to flow down around the face into a kind of short, but pendulous beard about a hand span long. It contrasted well against the paler trunk of the paperbark tree it was behind. Of the rest of the face I can't give a detailed description because it was how the eyes locked onto mine that fixed my attention. Eyes darker than the hair, yet piercing. Glistening almost.


The head was not held absolutely vertical but slightly askew. I also noticed a sloping left shoulder and short length of upper left arm, both also covered with the same coloured hair. It was as if the being had swung out to look at me by extending its right arm which gripped the back of the tree. In that terrain it's difficult to judge exactly how tall the being was, but I would guess its head was around 4 or 5 feet above ground and I did not see the rest of its body.

It's distance from me was within a throw of a tennis ball. I use the word 'being' because it was instantly apparent from the eyes that it was curious, intelligent, and had intent. I would have stared into its eyes for no longer than 2 or 3 seconds before the 'run for your life' reaction kicked in.


Up to that time I had only read about one yowie sighting in an Australian Post magazine. It was spotted in a creek bed near Kilcoy by two students from Kedron High, my old school. I think they took a shot at it. The thing I saw didn't fit with my idea of a huge hairy man and I had no idea what it could have been. It was years afterwards that I began reading about Jonjarries/Junjuddies, Nyols and Net-Nets and started to wonder if it had been another, smaller kind of being than an adult yowie.


I tried to paint a watercolour of it and the scene afterwards, which I may still have somewhere, but a poem I wrote about it in after years best expressed my feelings about the incident.


It may seem unlikely that it was so close to urbanised areas, but a treed, watered corridor existed for a long way back along Scrubby Creek and forwards to the Logan River. And if you crossed the Pacific Highway you were in regenerated bushland all the way to Daisy Hill and the Venman Bushland Reserve. It looks quite different on google earth today, but you can still surmise the corridors quite easily.


When the Logan River floods it can still reach as far as Meakin Park. The mullet used to run up and I have a newspaper clipping of a bloke holding a sizeable flathead that he caught on the soccer oval. I also once came upon a semi-stranded lungfish on the bank of Scrubby Creek after a flood, which I tried to unsuccessfully capture.


Nobody believes me about that, though lungfish had been introduced to a few areas. So I've told the stranger story related here to even less people. I'm no longer in touch with my friend of those years.


I've had a few other experiences, but I think I'd prefer to talk with you personally about those if you care to get in touch. Feels good to get that one out.



Thank you, and keep up the good work.









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