Busy, busy, busy
Apologies to my loyal readers.
I’ve haven’t posted here for quite a few weeks – I’ve been very busy and then I went away for a few weeks caravanning with my wife and some dear friends. Like the photo of the autumn leaves above, I have quite a few new photos to share here. While I didn’t go snap happy, I did get some great shots of the Victorian high country, as well as autumn leaves in several centres such as Bright and Mt Beauty.
I’ll get to those photos and travel experiences in a few weeks. In the meantime, I still have quite a few photos of our trip to Morocco to share here, so in the coming days, expect more of those.
A sad case of environmental neglect
Sydney Trip June 2011
In recent days I have written about our short stay in the Hattah-Kulkyne National Park in north west Victoria earlier this year. This was on the last day of our holiday staying with family in Sydney.
We had lunch on the shore of Lake Hattah. This park, and the lake in particular, is one of our favourite places. We’ve had many wonderful weeks camping here. This included many hours canoeing the network of lakes which fill when the nearby River Murray is in flood. Sadly this area, and the catchment area for the river system has been in drought for many years. The lakes have suffered terribly as a result of this lack of water.
This is a Ramsar site – you can read some details on the photo of one of the signs near Lake Hattah. The managers of the national parks can do little about a drought, that I will grant. But to allow the lakes, camping grounds, picnic areas and other amenities to deteriorate like they are at present is a deplorable state of affairs. At best, I would describe it as environmental neglect. I could be really nasty and call it more like environmental vandalism. Lack of governmental funding is probably an element as well.
Sure – the whole region suffered during the drought, and the irrigators would have been demanding all the water they could get. But if we are to have sites like this listed as Ramsar sites – international agreements on environmental protection – then it has to backed up with action – not mere tokenism, posturing and hollow words.
Lunch at Lake Hattah
Sydney Trip June 2011
On the last day of our trip home from Sydney in June this year, we stopped at Lake Hattah for lunch. We found a convenient log on which to sit and enjoyed a quiet, peaceful time. We reminisced about the many times we’d been camping here over the years. This area still holds a special place in the memories of our children too, now long since grown up.
We’ve also enjoyed many hours of canoeing on the system of lakes which fill from the nearby River Murray when it’s in flood. Sadly, the lakes have suffered over the last decade due to severe drought. Now they are once again full there is some hope for the future of this wonderful environment.
Wildflowers, Hattah-Kulkyne National Park
Sydney Trip June 2010
On our wanderings through Hattah-Kulkyne National Park I not only had my head held up looking for birds to photograph, I also looked around on the ground – well, below eye level, anyway – for any bushes and trees in flower. My wife spotted this beautiful example of an Atriplex plant (we’re not sure which species), a member of the saltbush family of plants.
It’s a very attractive plant, I’m sure you’ll agree.
Road trip: Murray Bridge to Narrandera
On the first day of our road trip to Sydney earlier this year we covered a lot of territory on the first day. We left home in Murray Bridge early in the morning , had morning tea at Lameroo, lunch at Ouyen and arrived in Narrandera in the dark for a late dinner. Along the way we didn’t stop much, only to change drivers or to grab a quick bite to eat.
As we drove I kept a lookout for birds, making short lists here and there, especially taking note of interesting birds. I’ve already written about some of these on my Trevor’s Birding site. Instead of repeating that here, I’ve made some links back to that site:
- Australasian Grebe at Lameroo
- There were no Galahs at Galah
- Some birds seen in Ouyen
- Ouyen to Narrandera
It was a very tiring day of driving and we were pleased to have arrived at our motel in Narrandera. Even though this was near the intersection of two very busy highways, the noise of trucks throughout the night couldn’t keep us awake.