Thursday, June 30, 2011

Blue Mountians.

Next days was frosty.
And the day was so clear.

The Mount Tombah  botanic gardens.
And the blue was there again.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Blue Mountains.

Winter sunset at Echo Point. 

And they mountains are blue.

Bass Point and Minnamurra.

Where the river meets the sea. Photographs cannot do justice to the day. Absolutely breathtaking.  We didn't want dusk to fall.

 dolphins, of the friendly variety

and whales.  I waited in vain for him/her to do a tail splash again.  no chance.  Bugger!!!!  One day, matey.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Great Pacific Drive.

 Looking South, back towards Wollongong.

 The road in all the publicity material.  The original road ran along, about 50 feet above the bottom of the cliff.  Must have been a bit of hairy drive with the falling rocks and all.

The Sea Cliff Bridge is a place where, following the wreck of their ship, the survivors noticed coal seams in the cliffs above them.  Black Gold.   No surprise to learn then that the nearest village is Coalcliff.

Saturday, June 25, 2011


It is over there.  Sydney is not on Botany Bay like what I thought.  Well, the Southern suburbs and the airport are but not the Opera house and the Famous Bridge.  Sydney is in the next estuary up the coast, that of  the River Parramatta.  Cook noted it but having just provisioned his ship,  sailed past on his way north from Botany Bay.

Becoming a habit..........catching Australian cities in profile.  All of them are going to be in deep doo daa if  the sea level does in fact rise as predicted.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Joseph Banks.

Joseph Banks was the principle naturalist on the endeavour.  For some strange reason, his memorial is much posher than Cook's.  This may reflect the character of the two men,  if Hough is correct.  Cook a navy man through and through, Banks an aristocrat. Banks brought, amongest other things, two grey hounds on the 2 year voyage.

One Laughing Kookaburra.  Wonder if Bank's shot one?

Then there were two.  Heads back for a good old laugh.  Apparently these birds aren't native to Western Australia,  having been introduced there by early European settlers from the East of the country.

No laughing matter is hunting.  The birds sat on the branch watching the grass below, before swooping down on some poor unsuspecting bug.

This guy,  a Forest Raven I think,  was always eying our lunch.  Wollongong library is to thank I am for the bird identifications.  Great places, libraries, to get free WiFi.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Little Pied Cormorants.

Very cute they are too.

The sea is at almost the exact same level where the granite meets the softer limestone rocks.

This bit of serentipity has given rise to this fabulous coast line.  Add the rollers from the Pasific and you cannot stop watching the dance.

Botany Bay and Captain James Cook.

Botany Bay.  This was the first landing place of the Endeavour.  Since Zachary Hicks first sighted land, at Hicks Point,  Cook had to travel some 200 km before he could find a safe anchorage for his ship.  I have been reading Richard Hough's biography of Cook, making this visit to landing spot feel very real.

Took a 100 years before a monument was placed at the landing site.  Having read about the extraordinary sea trips that Cook and his like undertook in the 16 and 17 hundreds,  this road trip of ours  is a walk in the park.

 Today the Bay is still welcoming visitors form across the planet,

and taking delivery of manufactured good.  This container ship is coming through the same passage the Endeavour did 240 + years ago.

Very narrow it is too.  The smaller smudge is a surfer paddling his way out to sea.  What is he on???

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


 Third largest city in NSW, after Sydney and Canberra.

 The city owes it's existence to coal.  There is a deep pit still here, somewhere in this South facing view.

 To the north is the Great Pacific Drive leading to Botany Bay.  That is tomorrow's day out.

But first,  coffee and sticky date pudding.  Keira Mount cafe.  Very nice too. The days are beautifully bright and warm in the sun.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Forest and more forest

This South East corner of Victoria and New South Wales has large forested areas.  Great driving roads too!!!  Really should have a Morgan here.  Round Oz in a Mog!!!!

Too many maps can be confusing.  Still, no major U turns needed.

Friday, June 17, 2011


On the road between Batemans Bay and Wollongong.....Jervis Bay or rather the coast by Jervis Bay.  This  photo was taken at the max on my 300mm lense. See the faint plume?

Well it was a whale.  Amazing my Cannon.  Don't know what is in the picture till you get it home and on the computer.  So difficult to get a pic with the ocean swell that was running at the time.  This whale must have surfaced on the crest of the wave.  He/she wasn't on his/her own.  There were at least 4 of them,  counting the blows that went up every now and then.  They have arrived early.  Usually they are seen in early/mid July heading north.  No Orcas this time.

 How many more wave photos!!!!!

But the power in them is something to marvel at.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Book - The future of Life.

Road trip reading.  So,  we are approaching a bottleneck.   We have to get through this bottleneck with most of our ecosystems in tack, or at least in a state where they can be rebuilt if humans are to live on this planet.  No problem for Life.  It has gone through worse than what is coming.  But humans? 

The problem?  Get all the humans alive now and born in the next 50 years to an acceptable standard of well being without needing 4 additional planet earths to achieve it.  This book was published in 2002.  Progress has been made since,  but very, very slow it is.  Still,  I'm optimistic.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

90 Mile Beach - East End

This is the end of a 90 mile,  144 km, sandy beach.

This being a Sunday, this angling scene will no doubt be repeated along the whole 90 miles....even if it is cool to cold.

How rare are rainbows in the sea?

Post take digital enhance....but I like the effect.

Better run for home I think.

Monday, June 13, 2011


Behind this eastern end of the 90 Mile Beach are a number of interconnected fresh water lakes. 
Looks cold, yeh?  This guy built this craft himself out of three lengths of drainage pipes which he stuffed with polystyrene foam making it almost unsinkable.  The pilot, a dog,  is sitting in the backward facing chair.  Off the pub for a meal, turns out.  Brilliant fishing platform, complete with sun shade,  not needed today.

 I think this is a Skua.  There were a number on the beach.  I have been attacked by their cousin's off the coast of Scotland.  A very Hitchcock experience that was!!!

 In the fresh water lake,  these are Royal Spoonbills both pretending sleep, standing on one leg.

A Cape Barren Goose.  A solitary fellow, unlike geese and ducks that like company.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Sun Rise View.

 The view from the door of our luxurious accommodation.  Not a red sun rise, But interesting non the less.

And even this local was feeling a little chilled.