I spent the last few days down south in the Stirling Ranges, hiking and looking for wild orchids. It was a beautiful getaway. Given that due to health issues in the last 13 years this was my first time that I was able to hike up mountains, I am mighty proud of myself. So it started with heading down south straight after night shift on Sunday. Then on Monday, a beautiful and sunny day, I hiked up to Bluff Knoll 1099 m the highest of the Mountains in the Stirling Ranges. It is a rather steep walk with lots of steps. I took it slowly taking many photos along the way, even meditating for a little bit at a beautiful waterfall. Listening to the wind and sounds of the water, birds chirping. On top of Bluff Knoll the Eagles were soaring at eye level or just beneath. A sight that always makes my heart sing. The view was stunning. The sunset that evening wasn't to shabby either.
Tuesday I spent some time in the Porongurup NP hiking Castle Rock and finally seeing the skywalk. It was
another beautiful walk, not as steep as Bluff Knoll the day before but still it got the heart pumping. The walk went through a magical Karri forrest with its tall trees and lush undergrowth. The
rain held off for most of the walk which was nice.
After hiking Castle Rock and with rain approaching it was off to Albany and checking out Bald Head another beautiful trail. Unfortunately it was quite late in the afternoon already and it was raining so I could only do 1/4 of the 12.6 km long trail . But still it was well worth it and the reward was stunning views of the coastline.
Day 3 and I woke up to a foggy morning which made the campsite and forest look very mystical. After waiting for a while and going for a bush walk to look for orchids it cleared up a bit and I hiked up to Mt. Trio. It was another steep hike but well worth it. The rain held off for most of the walk and the view was incredible with the clouds rolling in over the mountains. Have you ever wondered what clouds taste or smell like? Well it is an interesting experience when you get surrounded and swallowed up by clouds.
Here is a compilation of the 4 days, impressions, wildflowers and most of all orchids. They are tiny and
often not bigger than your thumb or small finger nail, rather hard to find as well but well worth looking for. It took me all 4 days to find the helmet orchid as it is sooo tiny. I was also
blessed on the last morning to see a Night Jar owl.
On the way home we did a quick stop in Wagin to see the giant Ram and there were also some cherry blossoms. All in all a great trip with many beautiful memories made and Bucket list ticks done like Bluff Knoll and Castle Rock being the big ones as well as the Orchids. I took gazillions of photos so now its onto sorting through all of them