Many of you loyal blog readers will recall with fondness my 6-month stay in Australia in the winter of 2012/2013 (well.... it was summer down there). Many adventures were had, cool reptiles touched, and several vehicles barely made it out of the outback. Not only was Australia a lot of fun but it's also the main reason I jumped over to New Zealand to visit some friends--one by the name of Lisa... and well... the rest is wonderful history! To crank the nostalgia dial back just a little more, the main reason I came to Australia, was because I had bumped into Nigel Jackett and Jaime Hall (an Aussie-Canadian and Canadian-Canadian respectively) in BC as they were completing their cross-Canada cycling birding big year. Nigel jokingly invited me down to Perth where they lived, and I took it seriously and showed up on their doorstep a few months later. Well all these 2 years later Nigel and Jaime were getting married and Lisa and I were more than happy to hop the Tasman and make a holiday camping week of it!
|Waiting for the clouds to part at Fitzroy Falls. (Can you spot me betwixt the Asian tour group?)|
|Ahh that's better. Clouds gone, sun out--beauty!|
|I must say that the Hawkesbury Sandstone valleys of the Blue Mountains and Southern Highlands of NSW are one of my favourite vistas I've seen. Almost like if the canyons of SE Arizona were filled up with rainforest and a few chattering lyrebirds.|
|Not far from the tall Fitzroy Falls are these "Twin Falls." And just like my visit with Jukka several years ago... no Rock Warbler!|
|Lisa going for a fully-clothed dip in this 'infinity-creek'|
|Still no Rock Warblers... but my eyes were still happy.|
|After a long night arguing over whether the foul smell was my breath or some nearby cow paddies, Lisa discovered our answer the following morning: Dead Wombat.|
|Some of the pleasant forest we drove in over the course of the week. White-throated Treecreeper City.|
|Next up was a day trip to Congo. Congo Beach that is, with its blood-red creek that mingles with the green salt water for some very cool colour combos.|
|Gettin' all spiffy for the wedding. And capping off a wonderful week in Australia!|
Still to come: A summary of what's been happening lately in New Zealand including where I am living, my first time teaching AND getting paid, and various other random highlights from February!