Day 52

Litchfield

We had such a busy day today.  That means I have stacks of photos to share!

The kids had fun exploring around the camp site this morning.  They made a few interesting discoveries.

Coconuts! They spent all their spare time at the caravan park trying to crack one open.  Unsuccessfully too. Tough nuts.

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And an old, no longer used, green ants’ nest.

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I decided to be the driver for the day today.  First stop was the furthest location we decided to visit for the day. The Lost City. I even got to do a good long run of offroad driving to get there. I enjoyed it.  I’m not sure if everyone else did.

The Lost City was so interesting.  All these different rock formations that we are seeing fascinate me.

So much of it really was like a city that had been left to ruin.

lost_city1We even saw a person or two among the ‘buildings’?.

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I got distracted for a moment there, back to the city.

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lost_city10So much to look at.  So much to see.  Even if you’re not taking a good close look.  But if you are, sometimes you see small details to hold your interest for a while.  Well, I do at least.

Flowers

lost_city_11The texture of the rocks.

lost_city12Trees calling an unusual place home.

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Rocky windows

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Even thrones.

lost_city15From here we started heading back towards home, making more stops along the way.  Next stop. Wangi Falls.  Another amazing spot. Interestingly enough, we heard later that this pool has since been closed as a freshwater crocodile was found in or near the plunge pool. Glad we got to enjoy it.

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Here’s another green ants’ nest we spotted.

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These falls are in an area of monsoonal rainforest, and there is a boardwalk and tree top walk through it.  We didn’t do the whole loop, but we went as far as the tree top part, and then doubled back.  And we saw so much!

Lots of noisy bats and plenty of other wildlife.

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wangi8And it’s not a great photo, but we even saw a wild pig.

wangi9There were a couple of piglets too, but I completely missed those.

Aside from the fauna, there was plenty of interesting flora too.

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I love looking at the textures and patterns of tree trunks… do you think that is strange.  Paperbarks have to be one of my top two.  They’ve got the added bonus of feeling nice too.

wangi12And the moss in this trunk was gorgeous.

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Brett noticed (or perhaps he knew) that all the vines in the forest grew around the tree trunks the same way.  That interesting fact garnered a photo of a vine on a tree trunk.  Aren’t you glad.

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The rainforest was so lush – even ferns were growing in some areas.

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We had eaten lunch before discovering the Falls and their surrounds, but decided after so much adventuring a snack was called for.  And some hamming it up for the camera.  Jos does such a good job he got two in the blog.

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wangi16Yes, the beard is growing well!

wangi19And Jos wants you to know that he can wink.

wangi20Next stop: Buleys Rockhole. We almost didn’t come here as we’d already been swimming.  I’m glad… and injured because we did.

Glad, because it was so different to anything we’ve seen so far.

buleys1It is a series of cascades and plunge pools.  The kids were pretty disappointed (or maybe upset is the more appropriate word) at first because the first plunge pools we checked out were all very deep.  But as we clambered up higher we found a few shallower ones.  The rocks were very slippery and pretty much all of us had a fall during our time here.  Brett’s was particularly spectacular.

My injury had nothing to do with a fall.  I decided to take Cayley down one of the cascades.  Because the water flow was quite strong, I got her to sit behind me so she didn’t get thrown down by the force of the water.  I’m not completely certain what happened, but I think another person also came down behind us and bumped into us.  I was taking it very slowly down, but just at the moment we got bumped into, my foot got jammed. Ouchies.

Here’s where we were going down.

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There were some people sitting along the side who were quite concerned, but I was okay enough to get out of the water and back up to the car – Brett had taken Jos to the toilet.  Time to move on again, but this time no driving for me.

The next place we stopped, was the most exciting for me.  I’d been looking forward to coming here ever since we decided we’d ‘do’ Litchfield.

The magnetic termite mounds.

They’re amazing.  All their mounds face north-south to avoid the sun and keep it cool.  They’re very thin to avoid heat on the east-west sides.  I first heard of these from an Attenborough documentary.  He got to stand in the middle of them.  We had to stay on the fenced boardwalk. Lucky David!

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magnetic_termite5Because we arrived to late in the afternoon the sun really played havoc with the photos.  But here’s a few to show you what they’re like.

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In the background of the photo above you can see a different type of termite mound.  A cathedral termite.  The magnetic termites are in a band of floodplain that gets inundated in the wet season but scorching hot too.  No other termites are in this band, and the magnetic termites did not appear to live outside of it.

Almost like a graveyard full of tombstones when there is a lot of them together.

magnetic_termite4Apparently the termites have an inbuilt compass of some sort.  They’ve tested this by disturbing the magnetic poles and the termites build the mounds on a different angle.

Just across the other side of the car park road were some cathedral termite mounds you were able to look at close up.  So different.

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cathedral_termite2Oooh, look a pandanus fruit. So funky.

pandanus_fruitWith all the walking my foot was so sore.  There may have been much mentioning it and perhaps even tears.  Time to head home to the caravan.  I hope we don’t have to go to the hospital for my foot. We’ll see what tomorrow brings.

 

 

 

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