Southern Forests

Trip Start Mar 03, 2007
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Trip End Apr 2009


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Flag of Australia  ,
Saturday, February 23, 2008

With a short but sweet stay in Margaret River and a more organized departure we set off on a two day drive towards Esperance. It was to be yet another gorgeous drive winding us through a huge section of giant Karri Trees. The journey took us down into quaint Pemberton, deep within Karri territory. After lunch here we headed to the Gloucester Tree, which you can climb via a spiraling ladder that ascends 60 meters into the canopy. The tree is one of a collection that were used in the past to spot forrest fires. We were far too lazy to climb the tree as we had planned to climb another section later. We were charged $10 per car to enter the national park and we had two. So in hindsight we could have saved us $10 for more beer by ditching one of the cars.



From Pemberton we headed down towards Walpole with the with the weather taking a turn for the worse. We had all thought that our trek across Australia was going to be a sweltering affair but the nights were very cold down south as we soon found out with our lack of warm clothing options. We started camping out in some free camping spots which would become a mainstay of our trip and I even saw my first alive, wild kangaroo (all previous encounters with the elusive Roos had been with road kill specimens).

Just outside of Walpole we headed to the famous tree top walk among the giant tingle trees. Here we took a series of platforms climbing into the canopy of the trees and taking us for a 40 meter elevated trek. The platforms are designed to gently sway in the breeze to mimick life in the tree tops. Back down on the ground we took a trek through the bases of the trees some as large as 16 meters round. We also managed to spot a little Woylie a local marsupial.



After this we headed into Denmark and then onto West Cape Howe National Park. Our destination was an off the beaten track spot called Shelley Beach. The drive was over a series of step gravel roads but the effort was well worth it as we advanced over the ridge to a stunning location set below the cliffs, surrounded by greenery and a ragging aqua blue ocean. The only downfall of the place was there was a huge gail blowing. That night we partook in a few games of cards whilst finishing off a few odd bottle of spirits that I had brought with me form my once grand collection back in Perth.



The next day we headed back up the hillside, almost hitting a stray kangaroo and headed towards Albany, where we stopped for lunch. After this we made a final push towards Esperance.
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