land of green trees

land of green trees
the desert no more...

Monday, 21 November 2011

Go west...

We decided to make the most of a window between fires, and storms, to rediscover our Western boundary. Cravens Peak and Ethabuka adjoin the Northern Territory on both of their Western borders, so we were able to skirt the neighbouring property in the middle and drop back into Ethabuka. We cut out West a few hours through the incredible Painted Gorge with petroglyphs aplenty, then South another few hours travelling in the Territory. On the way we drove through the burnt areas, Cravens Peak has about 80% burnt, and Ethabuka probably has about 70% burnt. Thats around 900 000 acres of the properties we manage that have burnt! Its been declared a disaster zone so hopefully Bush Heritage will be able to recoup some of its costs from fighting them. Where a few mm of rain had fallen was incredible, green shoots spred a lawn across the blackened earth. Seeds from the trees are lying in chaotic piles, some scorched black from the heat, but others looked good, having all cracked open from the heat and are lying waiting for moisture. We ended up at an amazing swamp with coolibahs poking out through the still expanse of water, the sounds of water birds in the distance was amazing. There were storm clouds brewing though so we didn't linger, as we would never have gotten out of there with wet ground. Hundreds of kilometres of dunefields lay to the west of us, and there were more to the East, and South, and a few North also. The riverline that we followed to our campsite was dry, but edged with red gums, coolibahs and desert poplars. at one point we drove through a thicket of a tall, spindly plants with a delicate purple flower. It was so tall it hung right over the roof of the car, and went on for a few hundred metres, before disappearing into the endless spinifex.

No comments:

Post a Comment