Je bekijkt de reis...
Reisverslag 13th till 15th Day
28 november 2016
13th till 15th Day
Arrived at our accommodation in Walpole yesterday afternoon. The accommodation is a cabin on a farm property. There are 4 cabins in line with plenty of space between them for privacy and they all face a wooded area with decent size trees, Karri and Sheoak mainly. The owner’s house is on the other side of the wood. It is a shame that the trees block, what I imagine a view over nice undulating country with green meadows and bush with tall trees. The cabin is from the eighties and never updated, so basic but comfortable. In particular, it had a nice little wood burner, which we needed to use at night to heat the place as it was rather cool. So the 2 nights we stayed there we were very cosy and warm. It also had a twin tub washing machine (something from the sixties), a washing tub on one side and a spinning tub next to it, noting automatic or programmed and here Jan again showed her skills in getting any equipment going, she said: “oh mum used to have one of these” and proceeded to do all our washing.
Walpole is the country of tall timber, the “Valley of the Giants” and the trees are indeed bigggggg.
So in the morning we went to the main attraction, the “Tree Top Walk”. This walk is located in a national park and is the only area in Australia (and only 60,000 hectares) where the Tingle trees grow and these trees are the main attraction of the Tree Top Walk. This walk is on a metal structure that rises to 40 meters above the ground, reaching into the canopy of the trees and is built in a circle of about 300 meters long. So from that structure you see a lot of tree below you, but also still a lot above you.
The Tingle tree is a curious tree, it is a variety of stringy bark (a eucalyptus). It grows quickly tall then with swaying of the tree top it gets wider at the base, which it needs to as its roots are shallow and it does not have a central tap root, so as it ages it gets very wide at the base. There used to be an old Tingle tree where you could drive a car through its central base, but it died because the roots are shallow and the many cars crushed the radiating roots.
The centre of the tree hollows out from a fungus and this is usually then exacerbated by fire, causing in the case of very old trees cathedral size hollows. Often central tops are removed in nature by lightning strikes or in the park by arborists to prevent falling timber.
All this Tingle tree knowledge was conveyed to us by a park volunteer, a lovely, very bright, older lady. Well she would not have been much older than us and that realisation scares me a bit as that is what very soon (once I look like I am retired) other people will say about me, not bright and lovely, but older. I have decided that I am going to try to be graceful (patient, courteous, kind and generous) then people will see that and not so much my age. And wear hot coloured shirts!
The area is also home to the Karri tree, another majestic tree, easily growing to 75 to 90 meters tall. I think this tree is even more beautiful, as it’s trunk is perfectly smooth and straight for at least 30 meters.
The “Tree Top Walk” is really a bit of a disappointment. I think such a structure must have been first used in the tropics to allow observation of life in the tree tops, which is prolific in the tropics, but not here. Here the structure just provides a bit of excitement as it is so high (40 meters) and sways a fair bit as people walk on it and the size of the trees is as impressive on the ground as at 40 meters in the air. Anyway one just has to go and do it I suppose. In the afternoon we walked in the woods around it and saw many fantastic trees, it is such a beautiful forest and no amount of my photographs do justice to such majestic beauty or even show anything close to it.
The small walk we did was along the Bibbulmun Track, a walking track from Albany to Busselton (?), a few hundred kilometres long and going through the most beautiful countryside that south WA has to offer and if the bit we did is anything to go by then the whole track must be fabulous. I would love to walk it in bits, but unfortunately it is a long way from Ballarat.
Pack up time at the cabin.
Windows of the car washed.
Coffee from the petrol station in Walpole, high octane content, tasted fine.
Finished update of blog, the word document, at a park bench, there is no Wifi.
Walpole is half a street with a pub, a small supermarket, a petrol station, a café and half a dozen other buildings all on one side of the street and a reputation of wilderness fun on the other.
The drive to Pemberton, about 120Km was a bit of a zigzag route and slow and lazy. Windy harbour was lovely, a large sea and large granite boulders rolling into the sea and the sea rolling with a ferocious white force on to the beach.
In Northcliffe, another tiny place, we had real hamburgers, they tasted sooooo good. The CWA ladies had a meeting inside the café and the retired men were bullshitting outside.
On the road just outside Windy Harbour I rescued a long neck turtle crossing the road. He was singing “Chanson d’amour” so he was a bit slow and I had to encourage him to hurry up otherwise he would be flattened. Nice chap he was.
Got to Pemberton at 3.30pm.
We were booked in at Cottage 21.
Pemberton is again a small community in wonderful country side.
Undulating country with more green meadows and national parks everywhere. Bush unbelievable beautiful. Orchards of avocado and vineyards scattered here and there, all neat and tidy, marching in line across hills. Narrow roads bordered with stately trees weave through bush and meadows up and down the hills. And all of this is bathed in glorious sunshine. Just the sort of country of Noddy and Big Ears in their little red car.
Cottage 21 is a wooden, 3 bedroom house, completely built from local Karri timber in the nineteen thirties. The timber mill must have been big in those days and built heaps of the houses for its workers, all the same and they are now heritage listed. Our cottage is pretty much still in its original state except for a gas stove and some Ikea kitchen items, very suitable for older people. It has a beautiful polished Karri floor and a wonderful nostalgic atmosphere.
In the morning we went on the Pemberton Tram. A 2 hour tram ride into the bush using the rails of an old railway between Northcliffe and Pemberton to transport wooden logs. It was slow so it filled in a bit of time!
In the afternoon we walked around Big Brook Dam, a dam created in 1986 to provide drinking water for Pemberton. It is a wonderful lake with a walk and bike path of 4.2Km all around and a small beach for swimming and canoeing access. There were also 3 or 4 bird hides, a total misnomer for these wooden huts, as there are never any birds hiding in these structures only people, but they looked lovely among the green reeds and bushes along the edge of the water.
Having done some exercise on a hot day I found my mind drifting to a nice cold beer and Pemberton has a nice old pub. So in no time my lips touched a large golden glass off “one fifty lashes”, ahh Mr Squires you have done a true service to mankind!
For an evening meal we had fresh Black River whiting for dinner, Jan thought the meal was so so.
For today we had planned to first go to the Community Resource Centre and use their Wifi. I had completed notes of a few days of our trip so it was time to upload it again.
For such a small town the centre was well resourced with computers, faxes, printers and even a 3-D printer, which they were trialling. We were the only users of the IT section and it was all free for seniors. Another great perk getting with the pension.
The weather was again superb, blue skies everywhere, not to hot, about 24 degrees with a gentle breeze. We had decided the day before to do a walk in the Warren National Park. The walk was a circular walk of about 11 Km, all in the bush, with some hills, views and a substantial stretch along the Warren River. The park is known for a prolific collection of big Karri trees and it did not disappoint. The forest was beautiful, majestic trees with their smooth grey blue bark, all clean and straight trunks, towering in the sky. The undergrowth was dense and green, patches of ochre red dirt, bright coloured flowers, shy and single here and there or more robust in clumps. And this was all bathed in bright sunshine or soft shadows, constantly on the move, with pattern of small and large secrets always trying to hide from the light.
The calls of black parrots and tweets of little birds were as bright stars among the constant black hum of the flies, an engine that never stops, but only gets louder with the increasing heat of the day. And then from time to time the enormous trees carried their soft sighs and groans on the waves of the wind, everything felt perfect and it was as if I was walking in a painting by McCubbin.
It was a strenuous walk, we had brought lunch and a drink bottle each, but after 3 hours our food gone and bottles empty and very tired, I got worried that we might get thirsty, dehydrate and not make it. My survival instinct already well and truly alight, I suggested to Jan as casual as I could that we may have to drink our urine if necessary, it was then that the gods smiled on us and we spotted the start of the walk and our vehicle with 4 wheels. Ahh the motorcar, what an invention! Taking us in lightning speed to the local hotel, a cold beer and the deep satisfaction of having had a great walk in a fantastic forest.
No internet or phone service at our current accommodation in Deepdene.
Traveled to Dunsborough, using their beautiful library to access internet.
Foto's bij verslag (7)
28 november 2016 16:47 | Door: Jan & Alda
Hello Peter & Jan
Thanks for your updates. We really enjoy your travel reports. Thanks also for the botanical and zoological information that you share so generous with us. You would be an asset for my gentleman’s walking society ‘The Running Ear’!
29 november 2016 11:21 | Door: marg n rob
Bloody marvelous!! Travel brochures and guides are so informative!!
Thank god for the 60's and the twin tub..well done Jan...did you have electricity or was it bicycle powered??
Marg n rob
2 december 2016 13:19 | Door: Paul Lendfers
Great for reading, we follow you, with the finger on the map have fun and enjoy traveling.
Paul en Truus. XX