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Saturday, April 24, 2010

She Returns

My Esperance Trip - A Quick Reflection

Day 1: Fly to Esperance, get ripped off by the Taxi driver and can you believe they don't take Credit Cards!!! Check into motel. Find room, why do they always smell so much - sweet sickly carpet cleaner or something - phew, not good for people like me with allergies.

Day 2: Get picked up by my wonderful colleague and drive to Stokes National Park - all up that day we did around 450 kms. Ended the day with deep sand 4WDriving, towards sunset, on the boundary of the national park. Next to us is a large farm, its paddocks full of grey kangaroos - think I lost count at around 40. Hard work trying to stay in my seat as we rocketed through deep white sand - apparently the way not to get bogged is to go fast - who would have thought. Ended up at the coast overlooking the majestic southern ocean, truly breathtaking - shame about the trip back down the sand track in the dark - watchful for roos, luckily they heard and saw us coming and hopped out of our way in lots of time. An 11 hour day - but what fun.

Day 3: Get picked up and off to Cape Le Grand and Cape Arid National Parks - we drove on the hard white sand flanked by aqua ocean for miles. Saw so many birds - Pacific Gulls, Crested Terns, Hooded Plover, Red Capped Plovers, Pied Oystercatchers, Sooty Oystercatchers, Silver Gulls - what a job, bliss. Amazed by the granite outcrops meeting the ocean. The white 'squeaky' sand beaches, the aqua ocean, the friendliness of staff I meet. Encounter with a carpet python right on the beach. Saddened by the dying banksia, struck down by Dieback, that is slowly working its way through our Parks. 30kms of corrugated track out to Poison Creek, lunch on the beach, more birds, fish jumping in the creek just before it makes it way into the ocean. Then 30kms back on the same road - reckon I lost cms off my bum - isn't that how those vibration machines work. More kangaroos and then some emus. Soaring wedge-tailed eagles. 650kms today.

Day 4: Off to Peak Charles National Park, miles of bitumen road before we turn off and drive down more dirt roads - through mud, over corrugation but most pretty good. Peak Charles and Peak Eleanora loom in the distance. Driving through woodlands now, salmon gums, then gimlet with it's bronzed stems, lots of mallee. Some very wet patches on the way out, a river crossing, then miles of straight road. Back to town to check out the Nature Reserves surrounding the 3 lakes, more dieback here, beautiful grey paperbarks fringing the lake edge. 450 kms today.

Day 5: A day in the office to debrief before flying back to Perth. Arrive late, very tired and glad to be home. My darling hubby has bought KAZZOOM to the airport so I could drive home in my little black beauty. Purring down the highway with no bumps in sight - bliss.

Day 1 : the beaches of Stokes NP (below)

Day 2 : Driving along beach to Cape Le Grand NP (below)

Encounter with carpet python at Hellfire Bay

Hellfire Bay

Death - Dieback disease

Death : wildfire Hellfire Bay

Old Man Banksia

Life : healthy banksia speciosa - stunning

Nature's sculpture : Cape Le Grand NP

Hakea laurina : also susceptible to dieback
Birth : Hakea laurina in stages of opening

Day 3: Peak Charles (below)

Peak Charles and Peak Eleanora

Salmon gums and gimlet

Day 3 : wetlands

Death : banksia sculpture against the grey evening sky

Paperbark sentinels


  1. Oh, my goodness, what gorgeous shots! I can't even pick my favorite, I love them all! (With the possible exception of the snake. That would've scared the TAR out of me!!)

  2. Oh, so gorgeous! My god, just stunning. What a job you have. Simply beautiful.

  3. Gorgeous to see those shots and gorgeosu to see you back!

  4. God, I miss Australia. I didn't even realise how much until I saw these photos. Thank you for sharing, love xx

  5. Welcome back. Beautiful photos, what a sensory indulgence!

  6. Gorgeous photos!!
    Thank you for sharing them. :)

  7. Thanks ladies, the weather was not conducive to taking great shots, plus we were rushing from one place to the next, but I thought I would share the best ones and really appreciate your comments. xxx

  8. Your photographs is just so good these days....I don't think Cliff W took any better shots than these of yours. Another wonderful skill you have mastered.
    I envy you the sights you saw but not the bumpy rides.....not sure good for a dodgy back altho' you seem to have survived it OK. xxx



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