Posts Tagged ‘Uralla’

453. Doors…

23/08/2015

It has been quite some time since I shared doors with you.

The last year, one way or another has been busy. Now that I have a forced relaxation and some time on my hands, (actually that should be singular hand as one is still out of action) trying to type and upload photos is strangely therapeutic and for a time at least, takes my mind off the discomfort…

For the life of me I cannot recall exactly the location of this door except it was in the village of Chemainus on Vancouver Island.

For the life of me I cannot recall exactly the location of this door except it was in the village of Chemainus on Vancouver Island.

Chemainus is a small village on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. It was an unincorporated logging village established in 1858. Later a wood chip mill was established but these days the village is better known for 39 murals throughout the shopping precinct along with local arts and crafts and funky eateries. Interesting buildings and doors add to its charm.

Catholic Church Armidale

Catholic Church Armidale

Saints Mary & Joseph Catholic Church at Armidale is well endowed with many interesting doors…external as well as internal

032 clock the rocks

Hmmm! I am unable to positively identify this doorway set in magnificent sandstone in a building in the area of Loftus and Bridge Streets Sydney. Any history or architecture readers are welcome to provide positive identification.

The old Citizens Mutual Life Insurance building at Inverell. NSW.

The old Citizens Mutual Life Insurance building at Inverell. NSW.

The CML Assurance company no longer exists but the building is now used by several businesses. I recall as a teenager, fresh from High School and just started work. Assurance salesmen were allowed to speak with you in the workplace. I agreed to accept a CML Life endowment policy which I maintained for 10 years finally cashing it in when we built our second house and needed funds.

Uralla. NSW.

Uralla. NSW.

The old town of Uralla has many old buildings and of course doors. The town of Uralla is in the New England district of NSW and is an historic town established in 1850 when gold was discovered at Rocky River. Along with the gold came bushrangers. The most famous of these was Captain Thunderbolt who wandered the New England District apparently robbing the rich and giving to the poor. Or at least giving to the poor who supported or gave him shelter. His grave is located in the Uralla Cemetery.

Dorrigo. NSW

Dorrigo. NSW

Dorrigo is another small historic town in the Bellingen District, sitting atop the Great Dividing Range looking towards the coastal strip. The original reason for the town was its location to cart Red Cedar via the escarpment to the coast as well as to Armidale, the next major town in the New England District. These days many of the old buildings are gone, along with the old style doors and architecture.

Theatre Church Glen Innes. NSW.

Theatre Church Glen Innes. NSW.

The Chapel Theatre was originally a Methodist Church built in 1885 in the New England District town of Glen Innes. The Glen Innes Arts Council purchased the church in 1983 and set about converting it to a modern cinema. So modern in fact that they screen 3D Digital Dolby Stereo movies.

Glenmore Hotel. The Rocks, Sydney. NSW.

Glenmore Hotel. The Rocks, Sydney. NSW.

The Glenmore Hotel was built in 1921 by the brewing company, Tooth & Co (it no longer exists) The hotel is a pre Harbour Bridge icon in Cumberland Street, The Rocks, Sydney and is still popular today, retaining some of the original architecture and walls. The rooftop garden which has grand views of the Opera House and Sydney Harbour is also open on weekends for lunch, dinner and music.

Once a door. Guyra NSW.

Once a door. Guyra NSW.

This is a “Once Upon A Time” doorway. There was once a door here. It gave access to a rooftop garden, The town of Guyra, New England District, NSW, was like many towns established in the mid to late 1800’s. It was wealthy town, somehow the wealth being accumulated via potato farming and dairying. The town is still well known for spuds and lamb.

Art & Crafts Hall Central Tilba. NSW.

Art & Crafts Hall Central Tilba. NSW.

Tilba on the south coast of NSW is a confusing town. It is also known as Central Tilba while the sister village a few Klms to the south is known as Tilba Tilba. Both villages it seems are classified by the National Trust. All the original buildings are maintained in a condition akin of the previous century.  The main industry is dairy.

More doors to come in the months ahead.

 

 

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355. Doors

19/01/2014

Doors can be wonderful conversation pieces if the are large or unusual. They can be totally ignored even when unusual. They tend to keep the outside world out and the inside world, umm err, in. In our travels we have captured images of interesting doors which highlights some of the many places we have visited.

Grain Growers Building Entrance, Inverell, Central Western NSW.

Grain Growers Building Entrance, Inverell, Central Western NSW.

Staff entrance? At an empty shop at Guyra, New England District, NSW.

Staff entrance? At an empty shop at Guyra, New England District, NSW.

Carriage House entrance in Argyle Street, The Rocks, Sydney, NSW.

Carriage House entrance in Argyle Street, The Rocks, Sydney, NSW.

Entrance to the Mill Museum, which, strangely was once a...Mill.. Uralla, New England District, NSW.

Entrance to the Mill Museum, which, strangely was once a…Mill.. Uralla, New England District, NSW.

This building was erected in 1845 in Cumberland Street in the Rocks district of Sydney and if you look closely at the lower keyhole it suggests thbis may have been the original door. It was once known as "LILLYDALE" as an Inn but was originally built to be a Gentlemens Residence.

This building was erected in 1845 in Cumberland Street in the Rocks district of Sydney and if you look closely at the lower keyhole it suggests this may have been the original door. It was once known as “LILLYDALE” as an Inn but was originally built to be a Gentlemens Residence.

What a wonderful gate which catches the eye instantly at Armidale, New England District, NSW. Even more interesting is it is a back gate opening onto a little used car park.

What a wonderful gate which catches the eye instantly at Armidale, New England District, NSW. Even more interesting is it is a back gate opening onto a little used car park.

Cataract Dam in the hinterland behind Wollongong has a number or turret like structures with sold timberr doors.

Cataract Dam in the hinterland behind Wollongong has a number or turret like structures with sold timberr doors.

Old church which is now a movie theatre at Glen Innes in the New England district of northern NSW.

Old church which is now a movie theatre at Glen Innes in the New England district of northern NSW.

The old tomber built Dromaderry Hotel at Central Tilba on the NSW South Coast is an interesting building its own right. However, standing across the street and looking at it with a critical eye it seems to be a fire hazard. Old, old timber and around 100 years of paint. I liked the door though.

The old tomber built Dromaderry Hotel at Central Tilba on the NSW South Coast is an interesting building its own right. However, standing across the street and looking at it with a critical eye it seems to be a fire hazard. Old, old timber and around 100 years of paint. I liked the door though.

A side gate on and old uninteresting house at Dorrigo NSW on the Great Dividing Range.

A side gate on and old uninteresting house at Dorrigo NSW on the Great Dividing Range.

315.Doors. Most often we take them for granted…

14/05/2013

In our travels we have spied many interesting doors. Many have been worthy of a photograph. In fact for the first year we never even thought to photograph these portals into another world. What follows, in no particular chronological order, are a collection of doors we encountered during our travels.

I stopped in Coolamon southern NSW while on my way north in October 2010. I stayed three nights in the council campground because:

It was cheap. Only $10 per night.

I had power and it was raining and cold. Power was used to fire up the reverse cycle air conditioner which was used to keep me warm.

The town had interesting buildings and history.

Most importantly I had nowhere to be for a few weeks so this town was as good as any to stay awhile.

 

Dunny door, Coolamon NSW.

Dunny door, Coolamon NSW.

All the shops fronting the big wide main street had a service lane-way behind them. Once upon a time all the shops had outside stables and toilets beside the back lane-way.

Typical stables and dunny behind Coolamon shops.

Typical stables and dunny behind Coolamon shops.

We travelled to Taylors Arm, the small town with the local hotel reputedly the place where the song, “The Pub With No Beer” was written.

Museum Taylors Arm, NSW.

Museum Taylors Arm, NSW.

This doorway to a Doctors surgery in The Rocks area of Sydney NSW is typical of many of the doors on the old buildings in the area.

Doctors surgery The Rocks, Sydney, NSW.

Doctors surgery The Rocks, Sydney, NSW.

Many of the oldest buildings in the New England district of NSW, particularly Armidale, Guyra, Glen Innes and Uralla are built from locally made clay bricks known as Armidale Blue. Typically the old buildings have sturdy doors as well.

Catholic church Guyra NSW.

Catholic church Guyra NSW.

We stayed in a caravan park called Kidmans Camp on the north bank of the Darling River in the western NSW town of Bourke. The area is well known as the beginning of “the back o Bourke” a colloquialism for “in the middle of nowhere”. This old outdoor dunny became a telephone booth then as telephone booths became obsolete it is now a curiosity.

Once and outback dunny, now a public phone booth on the Kidman property, now a caravan park at Bourke, western NSW.

Once and outback dunny, now a public phone booth on the Kidman property, now a caravan park at Bourke, western NSW.

This gateway opens onto a brick paved courtyard between two buildings in Uralla NSW leads to an empty car-park.

Not so much a door but a gateway which leads to an empty carpark in the once prosperous New England, NSW town of Uralla.

Not so much a door but a gateway which leads to an empty carpark in the once prosperous New England, NSW town of Uralla.

Armidale Courthouse is a wonderful old building full of charm and character. It is a pity the building will become empty in 2013 when the court is moved to a newer building. Council is taking submissions for future use proposals.

Solid timber doors, as you would expect, are a feature of the Armidale Courthouse. The courthouse will be closed and moved to new premises. The old building is open to submissions from interested businesses and groups.

Solid timber doors, as you would expect, are a feature of the Armidale Courthouse. The courthouse will be closed and moved to new premises. The old building is open to submissions from interested businesses and groups.

The old Commercial banking Company of Sydney building at Inverell in NSW has been used by a number of tenants since the bank was amalgamated with National Australia Bank sometime in the 1980’s. Currently it is part of the courthouse precinct and houses the Sheriffs Office.

The north central NSW town of Inverell has lots of old buildings ewrected when the town was young and gold, precious gems and other in demand minerals were mined in the district. This is the original Commercial Banking Company of Sydney, Inverell branch doorway.

The north central NSW town of Inverell has lots of old buildings erected when the town was young and gold, precious gems and other in demand minerals were mined in the district. This is the original Commercial Banking Company of Sydney, Inverell branch doorway.

Ahhh! Tumburumba NSW in the southern NSW Alpine area. Those doors suggest it is warm inside.

This sturdy pair of doors is located in the small NSW Alpine town of Tumburumba.

This sturdy pair of doors is located in the small NSW Alpine town of Tumburumba.

I stayed here in September 2012. It was a great base for exploring around the Alpine areas of Victoria. The barn was toasty warm if I kept the slow combustion stove burning all day and night. I enjoyed staying here and the wonderful views of snow capped mountains all around the valley at Mt.Beauty.

These wonderful Redwood doors grace the wonderful barn I lived in late August and September 2012. The property is located in the Victorian Alps at Mt.Beauty, just below the snowline in sight of Mt.Bogong and several other snow capped mountains. The barn was heated by a wonderful wood burning stove and provided I kept the fire going 24/7 I was comfortable inside.

These wonderful Redwood door’s grace the wonderful barn I lived in late August and September 2012. The property is located in the Victorian Alps at Mt.Beauty, just below the snowline in sight of Mt.Bogong and several other snow capped mountains. The barn was heated by a wonderful wood burning stove and provided I kept the fire going 24/7 I was comfortable inside.

305. More Doors…

21/03/2013

Back at Post 288 at the beginning of December 2012 I introduced photos of DOORS. While we have been on the road I have often taken a photo of a door as it appealed to me. It seems I am not alone with this doortography as I have seen many photo collections and calendars and even paintings of doors.

So, here we go once more with another collection of 10 doors in random order.

Appropriately these doors made from Western Red Cedar in a barn like building made out of Western Red Cedar are located at Mt.Beauty in Victoria just below the snow line in the Victorian Alps. I lived here for six weeks in  August and September 2012 when I house sat for Peter and Lorna B. Although large and rambling it was a comfortable home with a wonderful wood fireplace which kept it all nice and cosy.

What a lovely set of doors at Mt. Beauty in Victoria.

What a lovely set of doors at Mt. Beauty in Victoria.

While on a visit to Tumbarumba NSW I found these solid timber doors begging to be photographed. I know there were many fine examples of interesting doors in the town but I was too busy being a rubber necked tourist to think too much about taking photos.

These double doors at Tumbarumba NSW were the entrance to a private residence within a commercial building.

These double doors at Tumbarumba NSW were the entrance to a private residence within a commercial building.

I visited the town of Inverell NSW and one of my plans was to locate the Commercial Bank of Australia premises but I saw many doors walking the streets (more photos in future posts) and still did not find the CBA bank building. I did however, find the CBC bank building.

 

These solid doors are the original on the Commercial Banking Company of Sydney (now absorbed/taken over by/aquired by the National Australia Bank) at Inverell NSW.

These solid doors are the original on the Commercial Banking Company of Sydney (now absorbed/taken over /aquired by the National Australia Bank) at Inverell NSW.

The Courthouse at Armidale was built 1859-1860. A new courthouse is being built nearby. The courthouse is still business as usual and staff were a little uncomfortable with photographs being taken inside the building. These Red Cedar doors leading to courtroom 2 are typical of the ornate timber work throughout the building.

Ab

One of several heavy timber doors gracing the old Courthouse at Armidale.

One of several heavy timber doors gracing the old Courthouse at Armidale.

About 15 Klms from the historic town  City of Armidale is the equally historic town of Uralla. The old buildings provided many doortography opportunities. Although strictly speaking this is not a door but is was eye catching anyway.

OK OK its not a door but it is inside a covered area between two buildings forming an arcade with nothing in it and leading to a car-park at Uralla NSW.

OK OK its not a door but it is inside a covered area between two buildings forming an arcade with nothing in it and leading to a car-park at Uralla NSW.

Way out in western NSW on the edge of the desert in the beginning of the red sand country is the old historic town of Bourke. There are so many old buildings with intriguing doors that I wandered around the main streets but had forgotten my camera. Duh! This photo of an old “dunny”    ( Dunny or dunny can is Australian slang for toilet, either the room or the specific fixture, especially an outhouse or other outdoor toilets.) was taken at the Kidman Bush Camp Camp Ground where we were staying. The old dunny is now used as a a public phone booth.

The door on this wonderful useful old builing was once a privacy screen on an outside toilet in the western NSW town of Bourke.

The door on this wonderful useful old building was once a privacy screen on an outside toilet in the western NSW town of Bourke.

St.Mary of the Angel Catholic Church at Guyra is built from bricks made from clay found only at a site near Armidale Airport. The clay is no longer available but many buildings, particularly churches and public buildings in Armidale, Guyra, Glen Innes and Uralla were made from the “Armidale Blue” bricks. Oh, and the church doors are solid wood.

Another solid timber door on the Catholic Church at Guyra NSW.

Another solid timber door on the Catholic Church at Guyra NSW.

While doing our December 2012, walking tour around The Rocks,  original settlement of Australia, there were so many interesting doors I thought I would never stop taking photos. Reason prevailed and only one is shown here today. This door opens to a doctors surgery in one of the original heritage listed buildings at 37 George St Sydney.

This door on a terrace house at Lower George Street Sydney NSW is the entrance to a doctors surgery. Note the traditional doctors surgery red light to the top right of the door.

This door on a terrace house at Lower George Street Sydney NSW is the entrance to a doctors surgery. Note the traditional doctors surgery red light to the top right of the door.

Taylors Arm is a small community west of Kempsey NSW. The town pushes the theory that this was the location of the original Pub With No Beer. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Pub_with_No_Beer ) This distinction is challenged by  the town of Ingham in north Queensland but numbers seem to favour Taylors Arm as the original. At the back of the Pub With No Beer is a small historical museum which itself is of some interest. The building is an old church and was rescued from demolition by the publican and carted to its present location. The museum houses all sorts of memorabillia about the area and the PWNB.

The Pub With No Beer song was purportedly written about the pub at Taylors Arm near Kempsey NSW. These doors open onto the little museum to honour the Pub With No Beer.

The Pub With No Beer song was purportedly written about the pub at Taylors Arm near Kempsey NSW. These doors open onto the little museum to honour the Pub With No Beer.

The words to the famous song are…

Songwriters: Parsons, Gordon Noel

 

Oh it’s-a lonesome away from your kindred and all
By the campfire at night we’ll hear the wild dingoes call
But there’s-a nothing so lonesome, morbid or drear
Than to stand in the bar of a pub with no beer
Now the publican’s anxious for the quota to come
And there’s a far away look on the face of the bum
The maid’s gone all cranky and the cook’s acting queer
Oh what a terrible place is a pub with no beer
Then the stockman rides up with his dry dusty throat
He breasts up to the bar and pulls a wad from his coat
But the smile on his face quickly turns to a sneer
As the barman says sadly the pub’s got no beer
Then the swaggie comes in smothered in dust and flies
He throws down his roll and rubs the sweat from his eyes
But when he is told, he says what’s this I hear
I’ve trudged fifty flamin’ miles to a pub with no beer
Now there’s a dog on the v’randa, for his master he waits
But the boss is inside drinking wine with his mates
He hurries for cover and he cringes in fear
It’s no place for a dog ’round a pub with no beer
And old Billy the blacksmith, the first time in his life
Why he’s gone home cold sober to his darling wife
He walks in the kitchen, she says you’re early Bill dear
But then he breaks down and tells her the pub’s got no beer
Oh it’s hard to believe that there’s customers still
But the money’s still tinkling in the old ancient till
The wine buffs are happy and I know they’re sincere
When they say they don’t care if the pub’s got no beer
So it’s-a lonesome away from your kindred and all
By the campfire at night we’ll hear the wild dingoes call
But there’s-a nothing so lonesome, morbid or drear-
as to stand in the bar of a Pub With No Beer.

The final selection is another toilet door located at Coolamon in south west NSW. Strictly speaking this is not a dunny door. Dunny usually refers to pit or dunny can style toilets without flushing facilities. This dunny is still in use, has flushing facilities and is called a dunny by the locals. Therefore this is a dunny door.

An outdoor toilet, still in use at Coolamon, NSW.

An outdoor toilet, still in use at Coolamon, NSW.

Oh, by the way, in Oz slang we often hear a description of a large solidily built man OR woman referred to as being “built like brick dunny”. As you can see, it is a solid building.

Cheers until Sunday.

298. Sunday 3rd February 2013. Of droughts and flooding rains…of gorges, chasms and waterfalls…

04/02/2013

Lots of photo’s this week. Double click to view full size.

Monday 28th January.

I woke to the sound of rain driven against the windows. The wind and rain continued most of the day sending a clear message to stay indoors.

I complied.

The rain depression and accompanying wind, legacy of ex tropical cyclone Oswald has brought flood havoc to the usual places in two states. Fitzroy River Qld, Rockhampton and downstream. Burnett River Qld, including Bundaberg and Gladstone. Mary River Qld, Gympie to Maryborough. Brisbane River Qld, including the Lockyer Valley and Brisbane. Wilson River NSW, around Lismore and low lying areas to the coast. Richmond River NSW, Woodburn through to Ballina. Clarence River NSW, from Grafton to Yamba. Macleay River NSW, Kempsey through to South West Rocks. I could go on but these are all places which have (and we have been there at the time) experienced floods in past years.

Tuesday 29th January.

I had hoped to be able to drive the Waterfall Way today and find at least one waterfall in full majestic water thumping thunderous spectacle. Specifically I wanted to see Wollomombi Falls, the highest falls in Australia. This height claim is subject to dispute and in fact the falls may be second or even third highest in Australia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wollomombi_Falls

Another waterfall, Chandler, combines with Wollomombi to create the Macleay River which is currently in flood.

The day started with a heavy overcast and a drizzly mist drifting up from the valley. I decided to stay as conditions would not be good for driving or photography. Late in the morning the sun started a battle with the clouds and bit by bit started to win, opening up patches of blue sky.

WooHoo!

Tomorrow is looking good.

Wednesday 30th January

The day started sunny and got hot early and stayed hot all day. Perfect for driving to Wollomombi Falls and Ebor Falls (again) both of which are contained in the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxley_Wild_Rivers_National_Park

House ruins on the access road to Wollombi Falls in the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park...Wollomombi section.

House ruins on the access road to Wollombi Falls in the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park…Wollomombi section.

Old log cabin style shed near the ruins.

Old log cabin style shed near the ruins.

Other falls within the park which I have visited are Dangars Falls, Bakers Creek Falls and Gara Gorge. The gorges within the park are simply “bloody” steep and the falls today are no exception. My photos can only give a small idea of the vastness of the gorges within the park.

Macleay River Gorge.

Macleay River Gorge.

Little wonder the entire park is called Oxley WILD Rivers National Park. The visit to Wollomombi Falls was prompted by the excessive rainfall of the past few days. On arrival, the falls, were pumping water over the 220 metre drop. The noise, even from the car-park was constant and loud.

Wollomombi Falls.

Wollomombi Falls.

Another view of Mollomombi Falls.

Another view of Mollomombi Falls.

There are two waterfalls, both spectacular, especially today with so much water cascading into the gorge. The first, about 500m as the crow flies is the Wollomombi Falls and by a strange coincidence it is fed by the Wollomombi River, in flood at the moment. The second falls are about a further 500m along the same gorge wall is Chandler Falls and by another coincidence is fed by the equally flooded, Chandler River.

Chandler Falls.

Chandler Falls.

Closeup Chandler Falls.

Closeup Chandler Falls.

Where both rivers meet on the gorge floor way below they form a new river, the Macleay which in turn is fed by hundreds of creeks and minor rivers on its journey down the mountains and eventually to the sea.

Wollomombi and Chandler Falls.

Wollomombi and Chandler Falls.

Wollomombi River and Chandler River meet forming Macleay River.

Wollomombi River and Chandler River meet forming Macleay River.

Little wonder the lower Macleay is in flood around Kempsey and South West Rocks on the coast. A walk took me along the hills to the Wollomombi River just above the lip of the falls. A steel bridge crosses the river and a path leads to a lookout above the falls. From the debris lying on the bridge and river bank it was clear to me the water level has gone down at least 60cm or perhaps as much as one metre in the last day or two.

Bridge over Wollomombi River. Note the debris and the special hinged hand rails.

Bridge over Wollomombi River. Note the debris and the special hinged hand rails.

Maybe I should have been here yesterday. I stopped at the bridge, as a tree, carried there by floodwaters a day or so ago, was jammed on the bridge. No sense risking climbing over the log with a swollen and raging river only 30cm below when a slip would have me in the water and the falls were only 100m downstream. I was alone and nobody knew I was there. In fact there were no fresh prints on the muddy path I followed.  The bridge has been designed and built so the hand rails can collapse when trees and logs are being washed towards the falls. I could not budge the rails by pulling on them so the forces involved to flatten them must be considerable.

Warning Sign. Steep Slopes.Truist me, those slopes are steep and 200m to the floor below..

Warning Sign. Steep Slopes.Trust me, those slopes are steep and 200m to the floor below..

One of several viewing platforms overlooking the Wollomombi Falls.

One of several viewing platforms overlooking the Wollomombi Falls.

Steep stair case to viewing platform at Wollomombi Falls.

Steep stair case to viewing platform at Wollomombi Falls.

The signs throughout the park warn of steep and slippery slopes. Even from the safety of a lookout I still felt nervous looking straight down to the valley below.

When trudging the path between two lookouts I noticed an odd shape ahead on top of a tree stump. As I got closer I thought the odd shape was a camouflage pose and may be a young Tawny Frogmouth. In fact it was a camouflage pose but it was a full grown Southern Forest Dragon.   http://www.reptilepark.com.au/animalprofile.asp?id=87

I was able to get within a metre of this delightful spikey creature and take many photographs.

Southern Forest Dragon.

Southern Forest Dragon.

Closeup of Southern Forest Dragon.

Closeup of Southern Forest Dragon.

I drove another 37Klms to Ebor and the twin falls which were pumping as well. On the drive I noticed on top of a mountain ahead was a large white shiny structure. Locals I taked to in Ebor told me it was an aviation radar on top of Round Mountain.   http://newsroom.airservicesaustralia.com/releases/en-route-radars-to-be-replaced

I noted again the water level in Guy Fawkes River also must have fallen by about 60cm since the height of the highest level a day or two ago.

The Guy Fawkes River as it plunges over the lip of Upper Ebor Falls.

The Guy Fawkes River as it plunges over the lip of Upper Ebor Falls.

This is Upper Ebor Falls during the drought two months ago.

This is Upper Ebor Falls during the drought two months ago.

This is upper Ebor Falls during the floods.

This is upper Ebor Falls during the floods.

Ebor Twin Falls in flood.

Ebor Twin Falls in flood.

On the drive back to Guyra I noticed where at least 20 trees had been blown down across the road from strong winds a few days ago. Road workers had been through and cut the fallen trees into manageable lengths and moved them off the road.

I travelled 180 Klms and walked around 5 Klms today.

Thursday 31st January

A quiet day of shopping and firing up the lawn mower to cut the grass. Final score grass 3 mower 2. The grass scored an overwhelming win. With the heavy rain followed by sunshine the grass grew quickly, thickly and aggressively. The mower simply struggled. There is always tomorrow for a return bout.

Friday 1st February.

Mower started quickly, eager to get into the grass and show who is boss. The grass!

Hmmm! Round three tomorrow.

Gave Toto the dog a bath which she tolerated but loves running around afterwards to dry off.

In the afternoon a severe storm warning was issued by the BOM (Bureau of Meteorology). Strong winds, heavy rain, thunder, lightning and hailstones. Move cars under shelter etc etc etc. I moved TERIOS across the street and into the neighbour garage. I took down the awning on WWWGO. Closed windows and hatches and went inside to await the storm. Two hours later the storm arrived. Rain, thunder, lightning.

Hmmm two out of three is not a bad average but thank goodness we did not get the strong winds and hail.

Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong got those.

Whew!

Saturday 2nd February

Today the Sun started a battle against the forces of darkness. In expectation of a win I started the mower and had my own battle against the tall thick and damp grass. The mower struggled but at least some of the yard is cut.

Sunday 3rd February

Overnight the temp got down to 6°. Good thing it was cold when I went to bed and I had the doona on all night. The morning continued cold but mostly sunny. The rest of Australia is bathed in summer and already it seems winter has arrived in Guyra. The Taylor Tribe confirmed they are ready to explore Apsley Falls in the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apsley_Falls

We drove through Armidale to Uralla and turned off to the neat township of Walcha.

Walcha Art Gallery.

Walcha Art Gallery.

Original Fenwicke House.

Original Fenwicke House.

Machine Gun Woman in park at Walcha. Sort of reminds me of a scene from a Mad Max movie.

Machine Gun Woman in park at Walcha. Sort of reminds me of a scene from a Mad Max movie.

As mentioned earlier in this post, Apsley Falls is another of the waterfalls cascading into this gorge system. The falls are fed by the Apsley River which runs through Walcha and once in the gorge system it joins the Macleay River on the journey to South West Rocks where it joins the Pacific Ocean.

Happy Taylor Tribe at Apsley Falls. ( L 2 R. Jason, Justin,Linda Greg with Alesha  with Ella the dog and Iain kneeling.

Happy Taylor Tribe at Apsley Falls. ( L 2 R. Jason, Justin,Linda Greg with Alesha with Ella the dog and Iain kneeling.

The scenery here is stark with steep sided gorge walls with vantage points to see the two falls which make up Apsley Falls.

Apsley Falls

Apsley Falls

Jason sitting rock ledge above upper Apsley Falls.

Jason sitting rock ledge above upper Apsley Falls.

The gorge walls are a mix of Basalt and slate which has split vertically creating the steep sided chasm walls.

Apsley Gorge showing steep sided chasm walls.

Apsley Gorge showing steep sided chasm walls.

Apsley Gorge

Apsley Gorge

On the southern entrance side to the gorge are several paths and lookouts with stairs leading to suspended viewing platforms.

Jason and Iain on suspended viewing platform.

Jason and Iain on suspended viewing platform.

A suspension bridge has been built to access the northern side of the gorge.

Taylor Tribe at the suspension bridge over Apsley River. Linda with Ella the dog, Jason, Iain, Greg, Alesha and Justin

Taylor Tribe at the suspension bridge over Apsley River. Linda with Ella the dog, Jason, Iain, Greg, Alesha and Justin

The original bridge was washed away in a flood in December 2009 and the new bridge was opened in June 2012. It certainly still looks new. At the base of the first fall is an area above the current water level, which looks as though much of the old bridge timbers were washed here in the flood. From our viewing platform 65m above the pool, those timbers looked like matchsticks. Although the day was cold we soon warmed up with walking up and down steep staircases and following the winding and often steep sealed pathway around the gorge walls.

Apsley Falls showing steep staircase to viewing platform on the left.

Apsley Falls showing steep staircase to viewing platform on the left.

Lower Apsley Falls clearly show steep sided cliffs.

Lower Apsley Falls clearly show steep sided cliffs.

Another view of Apsley Falls.

Another view of Apsley Falls.

The pathway is very close to the edge but the strong steel railing with wire runners gave us a sense of security.

Alesha, Iain and Jason on the unfenced edge over a sheer 65m drop to Apsley Gorge.

Alesha, Iain and Jason on the unfenced edge over a sheer 65m drop to Apsley Gorge.

I really congratulate all the men and women who were involved in building staircases, viewing platforms, railings and pathways in steep and treacherous terrain.

Old photograph of a New Years Day party in 1906. Imagine the effort of getting to the falls then climbing down the only accessable rock face to picnic beside the falls. There were no roads to the falls in those days. No staircases, viewing platforms or safety fences.

Old photograph of a New Years Day party in 1906. Imagine the effort of getting to the falls then climbing down the only accessable rock face to picnic beside the falls. There were no roads to the falls in those days. No staircases, viewing platforms or safety fences.

On our way home we stopped at the remains of a settlement called Irishtown between Walcha and Uralla.

Homeleigh and Irisgtown.

Homeleigh and Irisgtown.

Homeleigh, homestead.

Homeleigh, homestead.

Another tiring but satisfying day spent with good company. Thanks Taylor Tribe.