Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Day 7......Apollo Bay

First stop en route to Apollo Bay was Port Campbell,after stopping to see the scenic Bay of Islands and London Bridge. The scenery was spectacular! I couldn't resist a photo of Trev with London Bridge in the background because the last time I took a similar photo,the actual 'bridge' was still intact! On our journey to the Otway lighthouse we stopped to see an amazing sight.A beautiful Koala was calmly walking along the roadside beneath tall gum trees filled with sleeping koalas!The scene was so natural and unaffected by tourists or 'staged'. Driving along, we passed by spectacular scenery of rich green undulating hills (dairy country) alongside the Otway Ranges National Park. Having reached the Otway Lighthouse we climbed all the way to the top and admired the sensational views. We finally arrived at Apollo Bay in light rain which set in by the evening.Very calming way to fall asleep......

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Road Trip......Day 6

Journey to Port Fairy. First stop, Port Mc.Donnell. This lovely Port is the home of the Australian Rock Lobster Fleet.Unfortunately, all fishing boats were still out at sea when we dropped by. Port Mc.Donnell was also the first place where St.Mary Mc.Killop set sail for Port Adelaide to take her Final Vows. Next stop....Portland.A brief stop here for a yummy morning tea. Port Fairy. We went for a lovely,leisurely walk by the sea and saw fishermen and gorgeous holiday homes with direct sea views. Enjoyrd a delightful lunch of fish and chips by the water. Later, we toured the many local craft shops and Artist Galleries. A very relaxing and enjoyable day!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Road Trip....Day 5

Whilst at Mt.Gambier, we went to view the screening of 'Volcano'. This documentary is a must in order to help understand the interesting background of the 'Limestone Coast', old volcanoes.sink holes and lakes. Drove round to view Valley Lake and the beautiful Blue Lake. Explored the amazing 'Engelbrecht Cave'. There are really two very different dry limestone caves to explore,one of which has an extensive underground lake whose water is so clear you would think you were looking through a mirror! These caves are an experienced diver's paradise! No fish can be found in the waters of these caves only minute, blind crustaceans, older than the dinosaurs!!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Road Trip....Day 4

Travelled to Mt.Gambier for a two night stay. First stop....Naracoorte Caves. These were fascinating underground caves with very high ceilings in some parts.The limestone ceilings were often pock marked with deep 'avens' or holes.These caves were dry caves so the usual stalactites and stalagmites associated with 'wet' limestone caves were not to be seen. I was amazed by the large peppercorn tree growing from virtually the rock face of the cave entrance! Stopped at Penola (St.Mary Mackillop association).A lovely little town with great galleries and eating places to enjoy! We drove past kilometres of wineries,each one alongside another and decided to stop and visit Wynn's. The founder of this winery region and a great deal more of Mt.Gambier was a gentleman named 'John Riddoch'.I thought my son Stephan would be quietly amused by this association..... After several wine purchases we drove on to Mt.Gambier. That late afternoon, we visited Umpherston Sinkhole. I was gobsmacked! This virtual deep hole in a city street was an amazing garden with overhanging curtains of ivy! Perhaps you can estimate the depth of this sinkhole garden from my photos. A lovely dinner followed by a trip to the cinema ended an astonishing day which also happened to be my birthday! (The huge sculpture is of a prehistoric wombat located in the grounds at Naracoorte Caves.It was so lifelike!)

Road Trip.....Day 3

Journey to Hall's Gap. Our first stop was made at Mc.Kenzie Falls.We went on a lovely bush walk walking amongst and near towering gum trees and other native flora.Unusual and ever so pretty native wildflowers greeted us on our journey to the Falls. I stopped beside a towering 'Blackboy' or xanthranthus australis'. I had never before seen one growing so tall! Next stop....Wartok Reservoir. This huge reservoir was full and very expansive! Our approach to Hall's Gap was so scenic! Magnificent scenery and rugged mountain range. Whilst at Hall's Gap we visited the Native Wildflower Exhibition.I especially loved the dainty native orchids on display. Travelling on, we stopped at Mt.Zero Olives.Acres and acres of olive trees at the foot of towering Mt.Zero.I was particularly surprised but impressed by all the wildflowers growing in the sandy soil beneath the many trees.It looked like the olive trees were springing up from a blue carpet!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Road Trip Day 2.....

Our journey To Horsham led us through St.Arnaud and Warracknabeal. En route we passed acres and acres of golden canola crop as far as the eye could see! In St.Arnaud, whilst walking along quiet, sleepy streets, I caught sight of prolific beds and nature strips planted with bright arctotis and gazania flowers. These plantings were like carpets of flowers in shades of gold,red,bronze and apricot colours. A central sculpture located at a prominent roundabout in Warracknabeal depicted a flock of sheep being rounded up by a sheep dog. Further in town at another roundabout,a sculpture depicting the same sheep dog but this time,atop bales of wool! These sculptures were adorable and so lifelike. Journey to Horsham involved driving through very flat country with many acres of farmland, mainly canola,wheat and sheep.
We walked along the peaceful and full Wimmera River before dinner and saw many lovely tall gum trees.I came across a huge fallen gum and wanted to stop for a photo. Overlooking parts of this River were many new homes which we admired and wondered how much their owners enjoyed their location.....

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Spring road trip.....Day 1

Early October,glorious Spring day and Trev and I commenced our week long road trip around Victoria and briefly touching South Australia. First stop was visiting the Elmore Field Days. Acres upon acres of rural displays ranging from the latest in agricultural and rural machinery, eco systems,'country' lifestyle choices,farm machinery,delicious home made ice cream and much much more! On arrival, I first caught sight of this impressive,big,black, shiny cadillac in the carpark opposite to where we parked.It looked so out of place amongst the many varieties of utes and 4wd's and large trucks! Perfect excuse for my first holiday snap!! Couldn't resist taking a photo of Trev standing in front of a tyre belonging to this humungous piece of equipment. We could actually almost stand upright beneath its front section. Amazing!