Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Under Down Under Tour - Day 4

Well, here we are, up to day four of my Tassie tour...

We woke up bright and early, fought the teenagers for kitchen space so we could have our breakfast... and bid a fond farewell to Cradle Mountain.

Our first stop was the rainforest of Montezuma Falls... another beautiful rainforest for me to enjoy! Unfortunately, the day was, yet again, very cold... and it was also raining. So, we walked in the cold rain to get to another waterfall... but, the forest was beautiful, so it didn't bother me TOO much. The walk was about 3 hours, round trip... I decided that I wanted to take my time on the walk, and fell back behind everyone so I could enjoy the sounds of the rainforest... I was also hoping I'd see a snake or some other kind of critter, and I figured that I'd have a better chance to see one if it was just me, walking quietly.

Well, I didn't see any little critters, but I did see a neat little abandoned mine shaft on the way to the falls. It was too dark to really see anything in there, but I just kept flashing my camera when I looked inside to make sure there wasn't anything too dangerous waiting to pounce on me. You can see that there were a bunch of webs, but nothing much else! I couldn't see much farther than you see in the photo... again, I was wishing for a flashlight!

Well, I finally got to the falls, (about 10 minutes after everyone else had left it... I was walking pretty slow) and again, it was beautiful... it seemed like each waterfall I would see was more spectacular than the next! This one was fun, because I had to walk across a scary swinging bridge in order to see it...

And if you want to know what I saw when I looked down... yes, you get another foot shot! And yes, it's the Yoga Slides that let me down on Cradle Mountain!

The waterfall was huge... again, I really wish I could edit the colors/lightness/darkeness of my pics before posting them so you'd be able to see the waterfall more clearly, but I guess you'll have to leave it up to your imagination. I'm still learning the finer points of using my Casio Exilim.

Years back, there used to be a train line that went through this forest, and it was so near the falls that the windows of the train was actually splashed by water as it passed... That is how powerfull this waterfall was!

So, after our rainforest walk, we headed to the Henty Sand Dunes, which were HUGE sand dunes... that were not so easy to climb. Unfortunately, I didn't get any pics of the sand dunes from a distance (weird, I wonder why?) but here is a picture I took when I was on top of one of the dunes...

I told everyone in my group that we weren't allowed to climb on the sand dunes in New Jersey... because I remember that to be true. But now I'm wondering if maybe I was thinking of just one PART of New Jersey where this was true... I know there was at least ONE place where there were signs telling us to stay off the dunes, because they were protected. New Jersyians? Can you help me out? Was I a big liar or not?

Anyhow, it was still cold, but we spent a little bit of time running and jumping off the edge of the dune and sliding down. Here is my jump... it was really wimpy compared to some of the guys... but for doing it the first time, it was scarier than it looked! I'm sure if I went again I would have put everyone else to shame!

After the dunes, we went to our last stop of the day, Ocean Beach. It was a very pretty beach, but it was SO COLD again... and the Roaring Forties (what the wind coming in over that part of Australia is called) were blowing... so we spent probably all of 20 minutes there, oooing and ahhing at the pretty water.

If you thought you noticed that there is someone in the water in the picture above, you are correct, and your eyes are not deceiving you! 'Who could that crazy person be?' you ask. 'Surely not someone from Karen's group, after she was just complaining about the cold!' HAH! We did have one crazy person who decided to go for a swim in the FREEZING cold water on the FREEZING cold day.

And I am not exaggerating about the cold. Again... a picture tells a thousand words.

Well, after the short stop at Ocean Beach, we headed back to our last hostel of the tour. Awww, it was so sad knowing that tomorrow, after our last adventure, we'd all be going our seperate ways! We decided to stay up late, with some good wine and beer, and play a few card games.

And amazingly enough, we played 3 different games, and I had never heard of any of them! Pass the Ace, Bonsieur Monsieur (yeah I probably can't spell in French), and Mao (a very fun game). Ladies and gentlemen, be prepared for tons of fun in May, because now I have 3 new games to play when I get back to the states!

So, after a few hours of cards and beer, we stumbled off to our beds, looking forward to the next day of fun!

Next... Day 5! The Conclusion!


lisah0822@comcast.net said...

hahaha!! sledding on a sand dune. pretty cool!! wow, that bridge looked scary, but beautiful none the less. and the falls....no words. i love waterfalls and i can only imagine how much more beautiful it is in person.

btw, your hangin w/ some whack jobs, swimming in the freezing cold, lol. its funny, cuz i was squinting my eyes trying to see what was in the water (thought it was one of those penguins, lol) then i saw you wrote "yes, your eyes arent decieving...." LOL. funny, you read my mind before i even saw the picture, lol.

miss u mucho!!

Dad said...

You are absolutely right about the sand dunes,at least at Long Beach Island. There are signs posted to keep off because they're considered to be the first line of defense to protect against storms. Walking on them breaks down the dune grass and the dunes - making the sand easier to wash away.

PMH said...

Wonderful pictures again, Kare! We have dunes here by Lake Michigan that we are able to climb, but I don't know anyone who slides down them. They do slide down the mud slides by the river, though.

Hey, you're sending the kids cards from Australia? Where is mine??

Nicola said...

That bridge looks so scary! idk if i could do it. ps loved the casio shout out! Stacy tell you she jumped on board? And her case is WAY smaller then ours! Dangit!

samantha7420 said...

That is awesome Karen! Tell me again why I didnt go with you???? I cant wait for your Florida trip to stay up drink wine, play new card games and pretend we are in Australia. Miss you!

stacy122982 said...

Lisa, fyi, nonetheless is one word, not three.

As for that bridge, WHAT!?! You are NUTS! It would be hard enough getting the group I was with to convince me to come across it, but you weren't even WITH the group when you crossed it! Who was motivating you to walk across it???
Man, that's serious.

And yes, Nicola is correct. I jumped aboard the Casio Wagon, and now own the same camera you got mom for Christmas. I LOVE IT!
PS...It came with TWO camera cases, a small hard one, and a small, leather type of cover. GREAT!