Post 105 – Katherine Gorge

Ian Collard
November 4, 2018

Katherine Gorge

 

We did the tourist thing and took a boat trip up the first two gorges.

A boat trip is really the only way of accessing the gorges. There are about 13 connected gorges in total but you can only drive to the first one and the walks to the subsequent gorges get pretty long.

This section of the gorge shows Jedda's rock made famous in the movie where Jedda jumped off this cliff face. ( I can't remember was it just Jedda or did they both jump?)

Fresh Water Crocodile

 

This poor crocodile was trying to hide in the cool of this crevice. I am not sure he wanted 50 tourists on a boat knowing he was in there.

Katherine 2nd Gorge

 

This couple were enjoying their paddle in the second gorge.

Aboriginal Art Work

 

The boat can not traverse the dry rock bar between the 1st and 2nd gorges. We had to walk. The walk goes past this panel of rock art. It is estimated to be 4000 years old.

Katherine Gorge

 

I made the climb up to the lookout overlooking the entrance to the first gorge.

Post 104 – Litchfield

Ian Collard
November 4, 2018

Litchfield - Lost City

 

We took Clifford down the 4x4 track into the sandstone rock formations called The Lost City. The track wasn't a problem only one section where you needed the high clearance.

Litchfield - Lost City

 

There is a short walk meandering though the "skyscrapers"

Litchfield - Florence Falls

 

Swimming in the pool at the bottom of Florence Falls. I did the circuit walk around this pool. When you get down there it is quite small and there were a lot of people. I would hate to be there during the peak season.

Litchfield - Tolmer Falls

Wangi Falls

This pool is still a dedicated swimming area but the warning sign has now changed. It is a low risk area. The rangers monitor the pool and there is a crocodile trap set up down stream.

Bamboo Creek Tin Mine

Seems like there were a lot of small family owned tin mines through out the area. This is probably one of the larger ones. This shot is of the shed that contained the crusher and shaking table that used water to seperate the tin ore from the dirt.

It was interesting in that there was a lot of mica chips around. I am not sure if mica and tin go together.

Lichfield to Daly River Road

 

We wanted to see the Blyth Homestead which is part way along the 4x4 track south out of Litchfield National Park. We didn't let signs such as this deter us.

Lichfield to Daly River Road Blyth Homestead

 

While it looks like a pretty nice location reading the Sargent family information inside it was a very tough life. It was basically an outpost for the older children to work long hours in the family Tin mine.

At the yards Bill (I am unsure of the name) nearly severed his foot at the heel when the adze he was using slipped. By the time the stockman who was with him got word to his family and they transported him to Darwin it was a week. The tracks were impassible and he had to be stretched by hand or  horseback and swum across the high creeks. Unfortunately he died the next day in Darwin hospital. So it was a tough life.

Surprise Creek Falls

 

Not a lot a water. Just a trickle still flowing down between these pools.

 

Magnetic Termites

 

We drove through several fields of these skinny, largely North South aligned termite mounds.

 

Steep creek exit

 

We had driven through the deep creek before Blyth Homestead - where the sign indicated 500mm and the sign said salt water crocodile seen here recently so no walking. We had negotiated the Reynolds river which reports had said can be difficult. It was to be an easy drive now to the bitumen. We went into this small creek with a bend in the crossing to be confronted with this.

Fortunately those are our tracks and we made it up.

 

Feeding the birds

 

Feeding the birds at the Batchelor Caravan Park

 

 

Post 103 – Kakadu Rock Art – Nourlangie

Ian Collard
November 3, 2018

Nourlangie

 

 

Nourlangie is not just one gallery but a series of sites in close proximity.

In this shot the smaller figure on the top right is Namarrgon the lightning man he creates the lightning and thunder that come with the storms.

The large figure is more interesting. He is Namarndjolg. He committed incest on the rock above this gallery and later was turned into Ginga (Salt Water Crocodile)

The third figure is Barrginj the wife of Namarrgon the lightning man

Post 102 – Kakadu Rock Art – Nanguluwur

Ian Collard
November 3, 2018

Nanguluwur Gallery - Sailing Ship.

 

 

We really wanted to see this gallery because of this drawing of a european sailing ship. The gallery is not as popular as some others, the walk in is a little further and the gallery not as big. For us it was not to be missed and there are interesting pieces apart from the sailing ship.

Nanguluwur Gallery - Algaihgo

 

 

Algaihgo is one of the original creation spirits she is in this shot. She planted the yellow banksias and has two attached to her head along with 4 arms.

 

Nanguluwur Gallery - Nayuhyunggi

 

 

Nayuhyunggi are also spirit figures. They are invisible to humans. They live in hollow trees and caves and come out at night. They like to eat human flesh. Some are drawn with extra fingers, and or elongated nipples, some carry dilly bags for the human kidneys, liver, heart and lungs.

I think if I was a child these stories would be enough to keep me close to camp at night time.

Nanguluwur Gallery - Grinding Stone

 

 

It wasn't until we were about ready to leave that we noticed this grinding stone. It was possible to imagine women grinding seed while the men? created the art works and told dream time stories to the children.

 

Post 101 – Kakadu Rock Art – Ubirr

Ian Collard
November 2, 2018

Ubirr Rock Art.

 

 

Some places are forbidden for aboriginal people. This painting is a warning to people of the consequences of disturbing the stones at a site  on the East Alligator river. You will contract Miyamiya - an illness that results in swollen bones as shown in this picture.

 

 

 

Ubirr Rock Art

 

 

The Ubirr site is a series of art sites in close proximity to each other. Some like this are just a few paintings under a over hang.

 

Ubirr Rock Art

 

 

The main gallery is a huge wall full of large pieces of art such as these x-ray drawings of fish.

 

Ubirr Rock Art

 

 

As well as showing an x-ray artwork of a kangaroo it also shows a "white-fella".  This man's hands disappear into the pockets of his trousers, his feet are encased in boots.

 

Ubirr Rock Art

 

 

Another white man in this shot - except he is painted in yellow ochre. As well as hands in pockets he is smoking a pipe.

 

Ubirr Rock Art

 

 

The previous two pieces of art can't be very old as they show white men. While not clear in the Centre of this shot is a figure that appears to be a Thylacine ( a dog figure with stripes at the rear) Speculation is that several thousand years ago there were Thylacines in the top end and that this painting is thousands of years old.

 

Ubirr Rock Art

 

 

This art work is a prompt for a story about not stealing. Short story is this man (Mabuyu) had caught some fish and while he was carrying them back to camp they were stolen. When the thieves retired to a cave after eating the stolen fish he sealed the cave up and they all died. Moral don't steal.

 

Post 100 – Cahill’s Crossing

Ian Collard
October 30, 2018

Cahill's Crossing

 

 

We found the infamous Cahill's Crossing just next to the Ubirr rock arts sites. Is it a vehicle crossing or a "crocodile" crossing?

There certainly was no problem spotting a croc in the time we were there.

 

 

Cahill's Crossing - Vehicular Traffic

I am not sure how deep the crossing gets at high tide, but it was pretty low while we were there and consequently there was a reasonable amount of traffic traversing it. No we didn't take Clifford across.

 

Cahill's Crossing

 

 

The Crossing is quite a tourist attraction in its own right. This bus driver let their passengers out on the far side. On our side the southern side there is a large viewing area high up on the bank well out of the water.

Yes there were a couple of blokes flicking lures when we first got there. They seemed to be pretty croc aware though and were standing well away from the water.

 

Post 99 – Corroboree Billabong

Ian Collard
October 28, 2018

Sunset Cruise on Corroboree Billabong

 

 

Yes it is getting warm, but it is also getting quiet - most of the southern tourists have left.

We had no trouble getting a powered site at the Corroboree Tavern even though it was their 30th birthday celebration. The cruise we booked was less than half full.

The edges of the billabong had lots of these large lotus lily pads.

 

Juvenile Jabiru

 

 

I was probably disappointed that we didn't see mum and dad but there were a pair of young Jabirus on the shore and the guide later pointed out their nest way in the distance.

 

Forest Kingfisher

 

 

We saw several Auzure Kingfishers and this Forest Kingfisher. As you can see they are pretty small and this was the best shot I got of them.

There are some other larger bird shots in the gallery on the home page.

 

Crocodile

 

 

This fellow was at least 4m. Even though we were in a big boat I was pretty uncomfortable being as close as we were. The croc on the other hand gave no indication of being intimidated by us at all.

Again see the home page galleries for more crocodile photos.

Sunset

 

 

Well it was a sunset cruise. We had a nice evening, fresh and salt water crocodiles, lots of birds, flowering lilies, and a sunset 🙂

 

Post 98 – Darwin Aviation Museum

Ian Collard
October 26, 2018

Darwin

 

So we are in Darwin.

We did find the port area with a couple of displays regarding the original bombing of Darwin. I hadn't really realised how big a military exercise it was by the Japanese. They had close to 200 aircraft involved in the two raids on the first day of bombing. I still thought it was small group who got lucky when the harbour was caught by surprise and largely undefended.

We did go to the Mindel Beach Sunset Markets yesterday evening. Lots of different things to choose from for tea.

This is the Darwin Aviation Museum. Quite unassuming from the outside with an apron of derelict aircraft, but it was well set up and interesting on the inside.

I think that is an Orion on the apron, I am not sure what it is doing here.

 

Darwin B52

 

 

The B 52 takes up most of the hanger and is impressive.

 

Darwin B52

 

 

 

 

Darwin F111

 

 

The iconic nose of the F111.

 

Post 97 – Gregory NP – Nawulbinbin walk.

Ian Collard
October 25, 2018

Gregory Tree

 

Who was Gregory? Apparently he took a ship from Brisbane around the coast and then up the Victoria river as far as here, where he set up a camp for 12 months while he explored the local area. Then no the 2nd of July 1856 he set off overland back to Brisbane.

Hence the Gregory National Park, which has now been renamed Judbarra.

Nawulbinbin Walk

Once again the country had been affected by fires.

Nawulbinbin Walk

 

After a steep walk up to the escarpmen, and then scrambling over rocks along the base of the escarpment, we were rewarded with finding some rock art and even a little explanation.

During the dreamtime beings that were both animal and human, and could change form, left their images on the rocks. These images were traced over and are the images we see today. This frog with a human head now makes sense.

 

Nawulbinbin Walk

 

The first green shoots after the fire.

 

 

Post 96 – Keep River National Park.

Ian Collard
October 25, 2018

Keep River NP

 

 

Because of bush fires the Keep River National Park has been closed for several weeks, but the southern section is now open.

Goorrandalng Campground

Goorrandalng campground is in the shadow of this sandstone bluff. We were theatened with a couple of small storms in the afternoon and some showers in the morning.

Goorrandalng Campground

 

 

A different "Sunset" photo.

Sandstone Window

 

I almost got wet along The Gorrandalng (Brogla Dreaming) Walk. I had to take shelter under a overhang.

Yet another natural window carved into the sandstone. It doesn't seem the first one we photographed in the Kalbarri National Park was unique. 🙂

 

 

Goorrandalng Walk

 

I think the showers made for some pretty special shots. Sorry not exactly straight out of camera I had to balance the light sky with the dark foreground on the computer.

Other shots from this series are in a gallery on the home page.