Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | January 12, 2017

Reflections

I guess the thing I am most drawn to is the reflection of light and clouds on the wet cusp of sand left by the retreating backwash. It is so like an abstract pattern. Like a magic mix of colour and movement. There is also a change in air at those times, silence and peace and coolness descends on the beach. Sometimes,  a sea mist lifts off the backwash into the dunes.

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Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | December 18, 2016

Rainbird photography

This is my new photography site. There is sense of achievement about this, and a possibility for the future.

http://rainbirdphotography.com/

One of my photos was used on ABC open facebook page. It always cheers me up when my photos are used on ABC open.

 

Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | December 8, 2016

Gallows again

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Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | December 8, 2016

Look at me now Headland

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I made a stop here a week ago I liked the reflections in the rock pool. The tide was very low. I had an insect wing in my eye whilst taking this, my eye was watering, and my nose running. I will go through a lot to capture good light.

Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | November 25, 2016

A moment before the ocean

The waves smash and then fall on the other side of the rampart like a curtain. I yell with excitement like a child as the big waves put on a show for me. And if I am lucky, there is no one else on the headland to hear me shout at the sky and the waves, and call me a nUT.

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Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | November 23, 2016

Pastels at the Gallows

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First trip out taking seascapes for a while. The light was a pastel shade. Low clouds blocked out the best sunset clouds at sunset.

Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | November 8, 2016

Great Ocean Road

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Apollo Bay

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Twelve Apostles

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Gibson Steps

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Twelve Apostles

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Pink Bells

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Stackhousia spathulata

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Acacia sp.

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Leptospermum sp.

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Rulingia

I finally made it to the Great Ocean Road. The holiday I had planned for two weeks ago before I hurt my back. I am currently in Apollo Bay, which is about three hours west of Melbourne, Victoria.

After leaving Melbourne after a longish wait to get my hire car, I drove along the very busy freeway towards Geelong. The freeway was four lanes wide, but very busy with trucks and cars. There were cars speeding in and out of the lanes. I just stuck to the speed limit and kept my eye for road signs to Great Ocean Road.

It is a long scenic drive to get here. Between Angelsea and Apollo Bay it was a windy road with lots of hairpin bends and precipitous fall to a raging ocean on one side of the car and big coastal hills on the other. Some of the hills had a covering of dead trees and a ground cover of bright green regenerating ferns. These were scars from the big bush fires from a few years ago. I saw a few wildflowers in the bushland including white flowering broom tea tree.

I didn’t have much chance to enjoy the view and arrived quite late, I made it before reception closed. I got caught behind a slow driver and at a couple of traffic work red lights, one where a bridge was being repaired.

The coast is comprised of limestone geology, and is home to the iconic Twelve Apostles. These are large sea. stacks, several  have collapsed over time and now only eight are left.

I hope to get some photos there later in my stay.

Apollo Bay is a medium sized town located on the southern ocean. It has its own harbour and breakwater, and so reminds me of a temperate Coffs. After checking into my apartment, I bought some fish and chips, and ate it near the breakwall.

The sunset looked promising. What I noticed is that sunset is very late, 7:48, compared to Coffs. The days are much longer in this more southerly latitude. I found on Google maps an interesting beach with a limestone reef  beyond a strip of sand with rocks exposed at low tide and an array of seaweed, seagrass, shells, Neptune’s necklace.

There was really nice sunset light in the long streaky clouds to the west and it was reflected in the rock pools and along the wet sand. I spent an enjoyable hour or so taking photos. I shared the photo taking with a Sooty Oystercatcher who was pecking at shells behind me with its strong red bill. Then I walked back to my car in the near dark.

I had a good long sleep, I looked out the window before dawn but there weren’t any clouds, so I slept in.

Twelve Apostles.

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I headed west from Apollo Bay. I visited Shelley Beach which is a 900m walk through tall Eucalypt forest to the coast. A species of Olearia and spiny-leaved wattle were commonly flowering  along the road. I photographed these at the car park.

Shelley Beach was small area of sandy beach behind an extensive limestone rock platform.  The last bit of the walk was muddy and slippery, a spring fed water along the track.

I gave the walk to Elliott River a miss and headed to Cape Otway. On the drive in I came upon lots of caps parked by the side of the road with the tourists pointing their cameras up into the trees. There were Koalas in the trees.  I drove on, I have seen Koalas before, and I don’t have a zoom lens to get a decent photo of them.

The lighthouse  was accessed through a souvenir shop, it cost about 20 dollars, so I decided not to do it. I walked through the car park along a track signposted to Cape Otway Lighthouse lookout. It was a pretty average Lookout.  There were quite a lot of flies landing on me so I got back into the car and started towards Port Campbell and the Twelve Apostles.

Two cars slowed to a stop at a road bridge over a creek. In chalk on the road was launching pad. There was a Koalas in the middle of the road. It scampered off to the side of the road as fast as a Koalas can.

The road then headed away from the coast towards Mt Lavery and Princetown.  A car overtook me, and the red ute behind me, going about 160km/hr. Very dangerous. A lot of motorcyclists use the road, and of course Maui and Britz campervans.

Eventually the road turned towards the coast down towards the narrow strip of coastline and rugged coastline of Port Campbell National Park. I stopped at Loch Ard Gorge. I walked around with my mobile camera looking at vantage points.

The Twelve Apostles car park was busy with tourists. There was a kiosk that only had two pies left. The buzz of joy flight helicopters taking off and landing was a regular occurrence. It was a windy day and I imagined the helicopters being buffeted around the conditions.

I went to the Twelve Apostles lookout and the tourists were as thick as rhe flies that landed on my arms.

While I was there I was  asked to take photos of three other couples. This fired my anxiety up. One couple were English, the man had a tatoo down his arm, his partner was young with big breasts. I tried not to let my had shake as I took the photo. The next were a couple in their thirties, both were tall and attractive the woman had dark hair the man a beard. Their mobile was smashed and I took photos but wasn’t sure if they came out to their satisfaction. The last couple were shorter, with a European accent, I think they were happier with my efforts.

I went into Port Campbell for something to eat. The town is fairly small with a general store on the main street. The Port is  a small bay enclosed by a low limestone cliff on the western side of town. It was long wait until sunset. It was overcast most of the afternoon, so I wasn’t certain what sort of sunset would eventuate. The London Bridge feature was located west of town. It is no longer a bridge but an island. The part of it joining it to island collapsed a few years ago.

I drove to the Twelve Apostles car park and waited for sunset. I walked down to the lookout just after 6:00pm. The tourists were thick on the ground. A French tourist noticed my glasses on the ground and picked them up , they were identical to his. What a coincidence.

So I waited for sunset, the crowds thickened,  the clouds thinned. By sunset there were only a few thin streaks in the direction of the Apostles. I took some photos looking towards Castle Rock where the best of the clouds were located. In the sheer cliffs below the Castle Rock, little Corellas nested in cavities in the limestone a hundred metres above the ocean. They looped out in big arcs above the ocean, and some perched on limestone rock crevicex. A long wait for an average sunset. Even at average sunsets you always see things of interest.

Then it was long drive back to Apollo Bay. The wind had picked up and was a howling gale by the time I reached Apollo Bay. I saw another Koalas sitting motionless in the road. Not an intelligent place to sit.

Day 2

A long night of strong wind, and  morning greeted by heavy rain. I drove back towards Port Campbell and parts of the road were flooding, trees had fallen on the road overnight. I made it 33km before having to go back for my phone camera charger in the room.

I made it back to Port Campbell by midday and ate some lunch. Then I headed to my apartment, which is a comfortable 2 level apartment with bedrooms upstairs. The manager was also a photographer and he had a nice sunset photo of the twelve apostles hanging in the office for sale.

He spoke about some good vantage points; and photography in general. He mentioned that at times after rain a waterfall falls over the cliffs at the 12 Apostles.

Sure enough when I made it our to the lookout a waterfall was spilling over the cliff. I try to make it a focus of my photography. It was freezing cold and windy standing there at the viewing platform. The crowds of the night before were not present.

The light shining on the cliffs was pleasingly golden, and those photo were probably the best of those I took. The sunset clouds were low and scudding rain laden clouds and they didn’t fire brightly at sunset. I left and headed back to the car after 8:00pm. Glad to go somewhere at get warm. The shops and service station were closed in Port Campbell. I got back to the apartment and got into bed to warm up.

Day 3

I slept in for sunrise. It wasn’t a colourful one. I came home and slept for a while. It wasn’t until lunch time that I headed out. I drove west of Port Campbell to Peterborough. I stopped at the Grotto, and the Bay of Martyrs and Bay of Islands. The limestone coast here was broken by sandy beaches and dunes.

I drove through Peterborough across a large river bridge. The Road left the coast and went through rural country on the way to Warnanbool, which is a town of over 33000 people. I filled up with petrol, and then drove into town a parked near the town beach. Warrnambool has a parkrun starting up.

Then it was shopping in Woolies and then back to Port Campbell. I was still thinking of Coffs Harbour problems even several days into my holiday and being thousands of kilometres away from there. There is no holiday from Coffs, the only way to have a break from Coffs is to leave permanently. It is as if the thoughts of Coffs eve pollute what should be an enjoyable holiday. At least I can go shopping in a Woolies in Warnanbool unlike Coffs.

I took a detour into Childers Cove, a nice sandy beach sheltered amongst limestone Headlands. The stairs down to the beach were closed due to damage.

Back at home I watched some movies. The Day the Earth stooder still with Keanu Reeves and Jennifer Connolly. It wasn’t too bad even if somewhat implausible.  I see some critics don’t like it because the message of humans destroying the planet is Hollywood liberalism, they preferred the religious overtones in the 1951 original.

Then I watched The Martian with Matt Damon. It was OK too, I really liked the rendering of the Martian landscape as he explored it in his Rover.  I really didn’t  get a sense of a lot of tension or drama of his experience until right at the end when he is shot out of the capsule. It was a pretty jovial film. The ending was unusual with all the characters congratulating themselves on another Aries launch, and their names being given as credits. I wouldn’t mind being by myself on a planet like Mars.

A bit of time to kill before the sunset. Another cold affair it was. The crowds at th he lookout were very thin. One of the last helicopters landed for the day. I put on an extra T shirt. I am dressed only in shorts, so that icy wind was cutting right through me as I waited for sunset.

The clouds were heavy and rain laden, with a thinner clouds in a gap above There were long rays appearing behind the clouds as they the sun lowered. I was hopeful that there would be a gap lower on the horizon letting colourfull sunset rays through, but they petered out.

It is a hard location to photograph, the Apostles are quite distant now that the nearest one collapsed. A portrait photo with my 100m macro seems to frame the Apostles and also get a little sky in the frame. The 35mm doesn’t really fill the frame.

It was good to get back to the car out of the wind, and back to my apartment at Port Campbell.

Day 4

The day started with sunrise over the Gibson steps. Which is a short walk down steps in the limestone cliff. I walked over to a few rocks and used them as a back drop for one the larger Apostles in the background. The sunrise was a drab affair very little colour got through. Grey skies with a tiny fringe of pink on the edges.

Back at home I jumped into bed as it was very cold, and slept for a while. I waited until 8:00am until the general store opened. I bought a Twelve Apostles Hoodie to keep me warmer.

Back home I watched another movie, Prometheus, which was interesting enough to keep me watching, but the actions of the crew seemed to be manipulated and implausible.  Particularly the part where a character has abdominal surgery, and then for the next few hours runs around saving herself actively from all sorts of catastrophes.

It wasn’t until after 5:00pm that I headed out to explore. I found an interesting dirt track that led to Sherbrooke Creek. I photographed flowers. A pink flowered Rulingia, a purple and yellow flowered exotic daisy, Senecio elegans, and a white flowered aromatic plant of the dunes. A sun orchid by the trail was in bud but not flowering, just my luck.

Sherbrooke River flowed directly over the sand into the ocean.

The other track went to Rutledge Creek. It was a slippery track lined by a low heath of tea-tree. A small waterfall fed over limestone rocks into the sea. There were footprints of kangaroos on the trail. It looked as if one Kangaroo had taken a slide. A large sea stack lay out to sea beyond an arc of limestone cliffs. Rutledge Creek spilled out over the edge of a small waterfall. A really pleasant spot hidden away from the crowds of torists.

I looked skywards and I thought that maybe there would be a great sunset for my last night at the Twelve Apostles. I had on a wincheater, and a Twelve Apostles hoodie that I bought at the general store to brave the cold standing there at the lookout waiting for sunset. It was sunset and the crowds were very thin at the lookout.

The sunset looked potentially promising but petered out like all the others. The sun set on the horizon as an orange glow low on the hroizon, but didn’t radiate out with any good light. One final burst of pink which was localised and way out to sea. The clouds closer to the Apostles where drab and dark.

I felt a sadness that my holiday was drawing to a close, and a trepidation that I am one week closer to work.

Day 5

Last Day. I was up again for sunrise. I drove over to the Gibson steps. The sunrise was completely blocked by grey clouds, with only some bruised pink light getting through. I didn’t even get out of the car for it.

I went for a walk on a trail to Broken Head and own the onto Sherbrooke River. A big sea cave has eroded the limestone under the cliffs. The park managers where doing Geotechnical investigations of tracks to discover in there was any subsidence. It is a very active and unstable limestone environment.

As I got back into my car, a blue wren appeared. It was pecking at my wind screen wipers trying to feed on windscreen insect kill, and attacking its reflection in the side view mirror. I took some photos and filmed it with my mobile phone camera. It really made me smile to see it, and all of my worrying thoughts left me. A moment of joy and wonder that’s what I am alive for.

I began to dream of working toward retirement and one day leaving the things that worry me behind and exploring Australia, and experiencing more great moments. Just my own company, with no worries of going back to an office. My office can be the beach and bushland, the wildflowers and wildlife.

I ate some breakfast, a sausage roll, and payed my final visit to the general store. Then I packed up an cleaned my apartment. The apartment manager recommended I go to Hopeton Falls on the way back to Melbourne.

That sadness of leaving Port Campbell filled me again. A good little holiday and now it was ending. I drove back to the walking track where the sun orchid was, but it was still in bud even though the sun was coming out.

Then I drove back towards Apollo Bay. To get to Hopeton Falls  I needed to drive through Beech Forest a small town with a cool name. I stopped to photograph Pink Bells flowering by the the side of the road. Gang Gang Cockatoos called from the trees above.

It was a 4km drive to get to Hopeton Falls, through pine plantations then a walk down a steep track of steps. The falls were quite impressive with a roar of water going over them. I took a few photos, but the midday light was not flattering, and it was hard to get a good angle on the falls.

Then I began the long haul back to Melbourne. Through Colac. About 2 hours 30 minutes, no time to stop for lunch. It would be touch and go to make my flight at 4:45. I filled up at Colac.

A few road work red lights slowed me down. Through Geelong with about 70km to go. I topped up again at a Setvice centre with about 40km to Melbourne.

The traffic started to slow on the M80 road approaching the airport. I got stuck in an outside lane and needed to manoeuvre to get across onto the right lane.

Then at the airport I got lost trying to find the rental car return parking. I drove around looking for it. Wasting time. I finally headed in the right direction and found the car return area. I dropped my car cleared it out. My nerves a mess. Then I checked in at just after 4:00pm.

I made it to my flight with only 10 minutes to spare. The flight to Sydney was a quick one about an hour.  Then it was only half an hour to my Coffs flight which arrived at 8:10pm. I was back in Coffs, but it never feels like coming home.

Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | September 13, 2016

Gibraltar House

Back to the Gibraltar Range House for the first time since 1999. The first time from before the fall. 16 tumultuous years. Having survived. Having not only survived, but having risen again, to run again, to run marathons and ultra marathons. To have found happiness as a feeling not a word; even for such a fleetingly short while.

And each of those springs marked by the wildflowers in this magnificent park. I greet the flowers each spring like familiar friends. I understand flowers, birds ,the change of light  better than people. How many springs do I have left? 16? I hope they are more peaceful.

I retreat to the edge as far from the human world as possible. At the lip of a waterfall or on the edge of an ocean my mind becomes free in moments, and I lose the crushing weight of identity and become an open soul delighting in experience; the sight of long diagonal crimson rays filling a distant sunset valley, the echoing call of a lyrebird mimicking a Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo, the sense of cold, clear mountain air filling my lungs.

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The Granites Lookout

It is a paradox that I have achieved more in this 15 years with a mental illness than at any time in my life. I have experienced life, really experienced life, the absolute despairing lows and the unbelievable magnificent highs.

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Hakea macrorryncha

Arrival

I parked my car alongside the house under the wattle dropping flowers on my car like confetti, and became overwhelmed by memory, and I had to sit on the steps to recompose myself. A life lived poorly it seems to me, opportunities I didn’t make the most of.

Howver, opportunity is never completely lost, it can be recovered, or reborn as a new opportunity.

Alarmed

The house has an alarm and you need an access number to get inside. The house is quite isolated and a bit of a lonely place to be all on my own.

There was the occasion when a man who had stolen a car approached me near the generator out the back of the house. He had a crazed look in his eyes and the back window of the Red Commodore was smashed in.

“I’ll be seeing you layer.” He said. He tried to steal stuff from some campers at Washpool National Park. They arrived at the house seeking  help, I tried to ring the Police but couldn’t contact them. Then they drove to Glenn Innes. Later the police arrived and had the man under arrest. A very interesting evening that one.

The furniture is modern and there are nice photos of tablelands country on the walls. In 1999 the house was  dusty and dirty.The house is more open plan than back then. The kitchen opens up onto the dining room. The house now runs on solar electricity. In 1999 it operated on a generator, which droned away into the night until such time as you went to bed and flicked the generator off switch. And slowly the lights would dim and silence descended except for the occasional roar of trucks on the Gwydir Highway.

Vegetation Survey

I remember  the German work experience student, my assistant on the vegetation survey  who beat me at Scrabble. She hated leeches. Good company, good memories.

Once I hid out in a cave under a granite tor, as a thunder and hail storm rolled over, before emerging to continue my ascent of Waratah Trig. I watched lighting strike nearby granite outcrops. On the drive down the sweeping bends of the Gwydir Highway hail had piled up to about 2 metres in depth

Full circle. Perhaps this is the time to end this long  nightmare and try to get back to the person I was before the fall. I can live a much better life. The potential is there.

Lost

I remember the night I became lost ascending the Junction Spur. I wandered off the trail into the darkness, couldn’t see the hand in front of my face. I’ve always felt like an outsider in this life, but that night in the dark I have never so alone. I stumbled around being strangled by vines and scratched by spines. By some miracle I stumbleb onto another path, and felt my way along like a blind feeling the tracks with my hand. In the distance I saw glow worms marking the embankment at the track intersection. I saw them and felt wonder, and didn’t feel so alone. They helped me guide me back to my car at 2:00am in the morning.

Day 1

A poor night sleep I was itchy all over perhaps my hair needs a wash. Really worried, I seem to be living a nightmare again, and I am not sure what to do. I am thinking of trying pills. An overcast morning I hope I can enjoy my day in the bush, my worries won’t leave me, and the closer I get to work the more worried I become.

It is overcast outside, or perhaps it is a fog. I will get going soon, I plan to walk up to Waratah Trig. I was over at the Granites Lookout for sunset. The needle hakea was flowering.  The sunset was a dramatic one with heavy clouds above a small amount of reds and pinks filtering through a distant Valley.

Next morning  I travelled back over to the Granites Lookout  because I lost my glasses. I found the other pair which had fallen from my bag. While there I took photos of the Needle Hakea which was in flower. The clouds were beginning to lift and some sun was breaking through. Then I drove back to the highway and began looking for the walking track to Waratah Trig. I drove back and forwards on the highway trying to find it. The track has been closed to the public as Waratah Trig is a significant site to Aboriginals. The track is on longer maintained.

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The granites storms lifting.

After about half an hour I found the old service trail. I slipped on some trousers, as the regrowth  vegetation on the trail is sharp and scratchy. Two years ago I walked part of the trail in shorts and my legs were scratched badly. After about a kilometre the trail turns left onto a T-intersection.  This trail heads towards the start of the ascent to Waratah Trig. You need to cross a small creek through very tall Gahnias and some Coral fern.

Then it is uphill through the increasingly rocky terrain. Over rock slabs and around tors. The way is marked by rock cairns and reflective colour markers. There are also blobs of yellow paint from old track markings. I was happy to see some wax flower Eriostemon australasius in flower. There was also some Lacy Wedge Fern Lindsaea microphylla. The trail emerged on the exposed rock platform. Here there was Phebalium woombye beginning to flower, and also lots of Boronia anethifolia. Dillwynia rupestris was also in flower.

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Eriostemon australasius

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Phebalium Woombye

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Brachyscome stuartii

The trail took a turn down into a gully. A bright yellow Pomaderris was flowering here. The climb up to the top was really steep on an exposed rock slabs.  Most of the flowering plants here I already had photos of. Leionema denatum, Acacia brunioides.  I did get a photo of Eucalyptus codonocarpa and on the way back down I managed to spot one flower of Brachyscome stuartii. The red-flowered Callistemon flavovirens was not flowering. And some of the individuals had dead branches. For quite a long walk the return was very average only 5 species.

Flying high above a Peregrine Falcon emitted an alarm call.

I considered walking to a more distant outcrop but the going was too steep. So I headed back down on the southern fall of the rock outcrop. It was hard going I needed to bum slide and push through shrub, and work my way around precipitous slopes. At one stage I put my weight down on a thick patch of Coral fern in a rock crevice and finished up to my neck. I was unable to reach my camera tripod. I dragged myself out straight onto a nest of ants, and a few bit me. It is hard going getting through scrubby vegetation like this and I cursed and swore quite a lot.

I made it back to the bottom of the rock platform. It took a while for me to find the cairn marking the continuation of the indistinct track. I disturbed a roosting Boobook Owl into a short flight. I made it back to the small creek. I was quite tired, it was nearly 2:00pm. I was relieved to get back to my car on the highway and take a drink of water.

After that I drove into Glen Innes for some supplies, and ate lunch. I returned to Gibraltar House after dusk.

Day 2

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Lyrebird Falls

Next morning was overcast, it wasn’t as cold as the previous night. I drove to Boundary Falls and walked to Lyrebird Falls. A narrow ribbon of white water falling over a sheer rock face into a deep forested gorge. On the steep slope above the falls was a dead tree lying on the edge it crown hanging down into the air. The roots of the trees near edge clung desperately for a hold in the shallow soil. The way out to the falls was a forest road that went through tall grassy wet sclerophyll forest. The small tree layer was filled with colour of flowering wattle. I heard a lyrebird imitating other bird species. There wasn’t much else in flower some White beard and Hardenbergia. A few light rain drops had started to fall.

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Leucopogon lanceolatus

I headed over to Raspberry Lookout. I wanted to walk down a ridge to see if I could find some dry rainforest. At first I tried the wrong ridge. I’d done this walk 20 years ago, but I couldn’t remember which way I’d gone down. I parked at the lookout itself and realised I’d walked down the ridge through the cleared area of vegetation immediately below the lookout. I managed to get mobile reception at the lookout and was writing some observations down. A guy came over to my car to see if I was OK. Apparently I had my head down. I told him I was alright, about how I had walked down to the bottom of the hill. I guess the guy was being kind, but in some ways I resented the intrusion. Maybe my anxiety bugged him, because he kept on talking once he got back in his car. Wasn’t sure if he was talking to himself or someone else in the car. I was glad when he drove off.

Then I walked down the ridge through the regrowth vegetation they chop down to maintain the view from the lookout. The ridge headed down steeply it was a very dry ridge, and there was little in flower. I saw Cangai wattle and Podolobium aestivum, not in flower. I got a photo of some Glycine in flower. Then the macro lens gave an error message and wouldn’t take photos. I felt like getting back in the car and driving home. What good would it be to see plants in flower and not be able to get photos of them.

I walked further down the ridge, my mobile still had reception and I could use Google maps to locate myself in proximity to the dry rainforest I wanted to find. The way down into the rainforest was extremely steep and on sparse slidey soil. I gave up and turned back, my joggers were giving me much purchase on the soil at all.

So some long hours in the bush and I only had 9 species of plant photographed. I headed back into Glen Innes for lunch and more food and something to drink. I’d gone nearly 2 days without Pepsi Max. My thoughts were a little bit lighter. On the first day I had a few bleak moments, feelings of deep  despair about my life and who I am, anger and hopelessness about some situations I find myself in back in Coffs, and also grief for my friend Lenny and a desire to leave the present and to go to some place like home.

Today the same thoughts were there but lighter with the edge taken off them. I was going to go for a bushwalk when I returned to Gibraltar House but it was raining. So I lay down to rest and slept for much of the night. I woke at 3:30am and started writing this diary. It has rained overnight and I am not sure if I will get more photos for my book tomorrow. I think I will do the Needles track.

Day 3

It rained overnight, but cleared in the early morning, so I was able to do a bushwalk to the needles. The Needles Lookout itself was obsucured by mist. I did get a photo of the species I was after Ricinocarpos specious, there was also a Pomaderris in flower too, which I photographed not sure if I had photographed this species before. There are dendrobium orchids on the rocks, but they were starting to come in bud, not flowering.

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Ricinocarpos speciosus

On the way back to Mulligans Hut the rain started to set in. I walked over to Barra Nula cascades, there is a population of Leionema ambiens nearby. I thought I could see a plant on the other side of the fast flowing Dandahra Creek. It was not possible to cross at that location.

So I walked back to the metal bridge over Dandahra Creek and walked though the bush on the other side of the creek bank. The going wasn’t too bad, the understory of Lomandra, with the ocassional tea tree to walk around. The rocky granite country came down towards the creek and the vegetation became more dense. I dragged myself through the scrub, the camera tripod dragging behind and getting caught on branches.

It took me twenty minutes to find the plant I was looking for. Leionema ambiens. The plant is very impressive with its stem-clasping leaves and white flowers. This is the only place in the park where it known to grow, and the population consists of only about 30 plants. It was growing in the shelter of a granite tor, perhaps protected by fire?

A soft rain was falling on me and my camera as I took photos. For me, I was happier than a pig in mud, it might’ve been raining, but for me seeing this plant was like the sun coming out. It made my day, it made three days up in the Gibraltar Range.

After the long trudge back through the bush I was drenched. But man, how I was enjoying myself. I got back in my car, and drove back to Coffs, with a newly renovated unit to enjoy.

A happy ever now.

Leionema_ambiens_1.jpg

Leionema ambiens

 

Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | September 1, 2016

Crepuscular Rays

I lose my myself amongst the hidden country of rock, sand, ocean and sky, and in those rare seconds the heavens share with me moments of unique colour and detail,  that carry me away to a place closer to the home I remember I once had.

Rays_1

I come from the saltwater people, we always live by the sea.

My Island Home Warumpi Band

Here_comes_the_ sun_3

Posted by: Paul Sheringhams blog: a place of running dreams come true | August 28, 2016

My latest story

http://antisf.com.au/the-stories/his-favourite-dance

So I have had a another story published online at Antipodean Science Fiction.

”His favourite dance.”

This is my sixth story published there. This story is based a on a true story of a refugee runner who competed for Australia. I was moved to write a story in which the protagonist found the better place he dreamed of.

Of course I am a runner too, so there is a considerable amount of write what you know is this story. And my obsession with birds and flying seems to make it nto my stories. It is why my new photo web site will be called “Rainbird Photography.”

 

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