Date Tags 2002au

Well, yesterday (Sunday) we had one thing to do: go to the Buchan Caves in eastern Victoria. It's one of the few nature thingies you can do regardless of the weather--and good for that, as it has just been pissing down rain on Saturday since we left the Prom. Fields were all flooded, rivers were surging, and potholes were sprouting.

Buchan Caves were fairly interesting; we did the Royal Cave tour. With six inches of rain in the past few days, they were wet as well--the water had percolated the 30m or so into the cave system, with dripping water and filled pools everywhere. It was one of those caves that was intimate, with most chambers no taller than Chris, and many that were about my height. I especially liked the Royal Font hall in the cave; I think it's either an ode to typography or where Princess Leia was baptized.

Afterwards, we were heading east, and then north to Sydney. (Gotta be in Sydney by Wednesday!) The road to Orbost was paved, but not fast… and with all the rain, things had fallen on it. First, it was watermelon sized rocks, which we moved. Then it was small eucalypts the thickness of a man’s leg across the road to drive around. Then, finally (and after 40km) there was the Huge Eucalypt. It was a good meter and a half high, straight across the road. Off to the side about 20m off the road was a family from Canberra in their newish Ford Falcon, clearing logs as they bushwacked a path. They decided the drainage ditch to get back on the road was too high, though, and turned around. We were glad we bought a Landcruiser; we went over the ditch without a problem, though we caught the spare tire underneath on a sharp trunk and had to back up and work around it.

Orbost had a visitor’s center and a Rainforest Introduction Walk… we skipped the Rainforest walk because it was raining hard. With no plans, we drove… and tried to decide where to stay. Some sleepy rainy fishing village-cum- -cum-caravan park next to some estuary? None of the spots south of Sydney really appealed; at this point we’ve seen quite enough waterfalls and cute-villages-by-the-sea. It was also non-stop raining, just pouring buckets, which means that any bushwalking would be wet and muddy and we’d be pulling leeches off our legs for days (now I understand another reason why Aussie hikers wear gaiters).

So we cut inland to Canberra, to see some things we missed the last time around—and that’s where we are today!