Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category

Time Out

September 8, 2017
A couple of weekends ago Kim and I took the opportunity to slip away to the East coast of Tassie.  We have wanted to see Wineglass Bay for a while now, and it seemed like a good opportunity since Lydia had some time off and could help look after things at home.  We stayed (another winter 2 nights for the price of 1 deal) at the Lodge in Freycinet National Park and arrived late afternoon on the Friday.

The Hazards certainly stand out when you drive into Coles Bay, with their rocky faces above the trees.

The cabins looked rustic but were nice and comfortable inside.  We had a family cabin which had the benefit of having a tiny kitchen so we were not reliant on buying meals.

Inside the Lodge itself was warm and spacious,

and had a wonderful view over Great Oyster Bay.  The sunset on Friday night was pretty spectacular starting off yellow then going orange and finally turning pink.  The creator God can put on an amazing light show!

Saturday broke cloudy but dry, however Kim had a headache and I spent the day snuffling and sneezing with a head cold!  We decided we were not up to the Wineglass Bay walk, but contented ourselves by driving around doing some sightseeing on smaller walks.  This is Kim at Friendly Beaches.  It brought back memories of the beaches in Albany with it’s squeaky white sand.
Our favourite walk of the day was a boardwalk near a lighthouse with spectacular views of cliffs and over the ocean.

They had a telescope set up so you could view these rocky islands that had seals on them.

Zoomed in on Kim’s photo you can see the seals even better than with the telescope.

Bennets Wallabies seemed fairly common in the area and fearlessly put on a show for the tourists,
and we saw wombats at Friendly Beaches too.
One feature of the whole area are the pinky coloured rocks.  They definitely stand out and are moulded into lots of interesting shapes.

Sunday morning we awoke feeling somewhat better, and decided we would make the attempt to climb to the Wineglass Bay lookout.  The track to the bay itself was closed for upgrades, so we didn’t have to feel guilty about not going the whole way.  🙂  The weather started sunny and windy, though it had deteriorated to rainy periods by the time we got back to the car park.  Kim’s chronic fatigue has been pretty bad lately, but there were seats along the path so we just took the walk slowly and rested whenever he felt the need.
The track itself was easy to walk on with some interesting boulders along the way.
Towards the end of the track we had been warned there was about 300 steps to climb, which proved pretty accurate.
It was a cold and very windy trip, but we finally made it to the lookout and could cast our eyes on Wineglass bay itself which, despite the wind, looked pretty calm.
Given that it was winter and not terribly accomodating weather it was surprising how many other folk were in the area and making the climb.  Even the lodge would have been at least 3/4 full.  I think the place must be frightfully crowded in Summer, so we were just as glad to be there at a quieter time of year.
Finally we headed back home via St Marys.  We drove through Elephant Pass, which I remember petrified me when we visited Tasmania 25ish years ago.  This time I drove it without any concerns at all – I guess I have adjusted to Tassie roads – plus I was not on the cliff side which definitely helps!  We managed to arrive in Launceston at 4pm so could go to the afternoon service of our favourite church “The Branch”.  All in all it was a nice trip away, and some time out that we rather felt we needed.
Just around the corner from our place there is good progress being made in building a replacement bridge over the Mersey River.  The old bridge is still in use with the new one being built alongside.  It is interesting to see them working on it, they have a large pontoon in the river that they can take the big machinery down onto.  They have been working for a few months already and will be a fair bit longer still before they are done I would think.
And that is enough news for now!  Take care all.

Lake Pedder Trip

August 5, 2016
I’m afraid I am going to inundate you with photos again! This time they are of a trip we took to Lake Pedder in the South West National Park here in Tassie.  Last weekend we found ourselves with a rare opportunity to go away – Lydia was not working, church was having a combined service elsewhere, the weather was not bad, the car was working and the Pedder Wilderness Lodge was offering two nights for the price of one – so Kim and I “seized the moment” and took off.
We enjoyed staying right in the heart of the national park at the lodge.  The large lounge/restaurant/bar room was lovely with it’s views over the lake and it’s warm fires, and the staff were enthusiastic and welcoming.  We chatted to other visitors in the evenings and I even tried out the indoor heated swimming pool.
Kim was up before dawn to get this photo looking out over Lake Pedder from the Lodge grounds.
Lake Pedder, South West National Park
And looking back towards the Lodge.
Pedder Wilderness Lodge before sunrise, South West National Park
This is the daytime view from the lodge of Lake Pedder.  It had high water levels after recent rains.
Lake Pedder, South West National Park
After breakfast, we drove out to do some sight seeing, and checked out the photos of what Lake Pedder looked like before they put in the road and dams to make the hydroelectric system.  The only folk who could get here then were serious hikers and rich folk in planes.
Cathy at the look out near Strathgordon, South West National Park
Then we headed off to Gordon Lake and Dam.  Despite recent rains that Lake was still low. The ramp to the hydro outlet is way above the water level!
Lake Gordon, South West National Park
Kim went down to look at the dam itself.  With my fear of heights I’m afraid there was no way I was going to enjoy that, so I kept my distance.  Other’s, however, were not so fearful.  One couple abseiled down the 140m of dam wall.
      Abseiling down the 140m dam wall, Gordon Dam, South West National Park
It’s a long way down, can you see one of them in this shot?  Then I guess they had the fun of climbing all the way up those ladders to get back to the top again.
 Abseiling down the 140m dam wall, Gordon Dam, South West National Park
After sightseeing around the dams we moved on to Wedge Mountain.  I have fond memories of Wedge Mountain as it was the first place I saw the beautiful moss covered rainforest when we were down this way 23 years ago.
Mount Wedge, South West National Park
However the bushfires last January had been through, so the rainforest I remembered was gone.  However it was good to see that the bushland was starting to regenerate already alongside the river.
Regrowth after fires near Mount Wedge, South West National Park
After that we wandered through the Creepy Crawly walk where I got to enjoy the rainforest that I remembered well, and Kim had to take photos for me.  🙂
Such lovely greenery.
Creepy Crawly Walk, South West National Park
Then it was back to the lodge before the rain came back, to have some dinner and more conversation with the other guests.
On Sunday we decided to take the long way home.  Once again we enjoyed seeing places we hadn’t been to since we visited Tasmania 23 years ago, albeit briefly this time.  🙂
We stopped at Mt Field National Park and got wet in the spray at Russell falls – so I don’t have a photo of that.  There was some nice rainforest type scenery by the river though.
Rainforest, Mount Field National Park
We dropped in at Lake St Clair.
Lake St Clair
And had lunch nearby – yes that is snow.
Cathy making lunch in a snow covered picnic area near Lake St Clair
Nelson Falls was more amenable to being photographed than Russell Falls had been.
Nelson Falls
And again I loved the greenery and the river that we saw on the walk to the falls.
Flowing River near Nelson Falls
We went through Queenstown too, and were interested to see that the “moonscape” caused by the copper mine is slowly regenerating at last, although the 5km approach to the town is still pretty hair raising – at least for someone who really does not enjoy heights.

Waterfalls near Queenstown

We started to think about it getting dark then and we still had a fair bit of driving to do so we couldn’t stop anymore despite seeing some lovely sights.  Eventually we got home safely around 7pm, weary but happy.  It was all too brief a time away, especially at the places we saw on Sunday, but it was lovely to have the opportunity to do it.  I fear we may have rekindled a love of travelling to the wild places of Tasmania, and I can see us plotting and planning to escape again sometime soon!

Creaming things back at home

June 27, 2014
We safely returned from our trip to WA late Monday.  All went well at home while we were away with the 3 older kids taking up the reins of the chores including feeding all the stock and milking twice a day.  They even had to fix one of our internal fence lines when the strainer post snapped and they coped with that just fine too.
Kim and myself had a good time away, we enjoyed seeing Albany again, catching up with numerous friends and spending precious time with family.  Thanks very much to everyone who put us up (or as Sam says – put up with us) and fed us and spent time with us while we were there.  We could have talked for hours more, but really value what time we did have.
Josiah exercised his adventurous side at the Katanning all ages playground, and also had a great time at SciTech.
Since being home we have been back into the swing of our do it yourself lifestyle.  First up we tried eating squab, which Lydia had to “process” while we were away.  Turns out it is delicious, rather like chicken only with more flavour and is very tender.  We are looking forward to having some more.
We tried out the cream separator too and it was really fun to see the milk coming out of one spout and lovely thick cream coming out of the other.  I am thrilled that now I can quickly and easily whip up Twinkle’s cream, which didn’t happen when I just tried to spoon the cream off the top of the milk.  Homemade whipped cream is delicious with some homemade brownie too.
And with just a bit more whipping the cream readily turns into butter.  I am SO pleased.  Thanks again for the separator Aunty Mary and Uncle Norm, it works a treat!!!!
We are getting about 10 litres of milk a day at the moment, and a bit under 10% of that is cream.  We will use the cream for butter and ice cream at least, and are open to other suggestions.  I tried a fetta cheese recipe yesterday, and may have to attempt a few more cheeses and yoghurt while I have such an abundance of milk.  Meanwhile the one remaining pig is getting the overflow, and he is not complaining.
It is certainly cool here now, we had the first snow on the mountains yesterday.  The firewood is holding out so far, hopefully we have enough to last us through this year.  Wood fires are great for the seriously cold days.
Well, I think that is about all of our news for the moment.  Take care all.