Friday, 11 March 2016

Tasmanian Odyssey Part Three

As Susan and Simon know only too well, we could bore for England on the subject of our recent holiday in Tasmania. But I make no apologies for that.

We loved it; it's a wonderful country and our relatives are just the most lovely people you could hope to meet..

So here's another selection of photos following on from Tasmanian Odyssey Part Two

We spent one of our days at the Western Wilderness harbour town of Strahan, cruising up the Gordon river and visiting Sarah Island. It was here where the most hardened of the convicts were sent, their main employment being felling timber (Huon Pine) and shipbuilding.

The story of Sarah island is both harrowing and inspiring and for those interested, one of the best sources of information is from the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service webpages. See here.

At the end of the cruise we visited a sawmill where Huon Pine is worked. Huon Pine is a very dense wood with tightly packed growth rings and a distinctive scent. It is valuable for its longevity and for the fact that it is impervious to water, therefore extremely useful in shipbuilding. To read more, see here.

Enjoy the photos!

The court house on Sarah Island... in later days this was used to house convicts as an incentive to cooperate with those in command..

A few of the remaining log wharves which are exposed at low tide..

Within the Rainforests of the Gordon River, deep within the Tasmanian World Heritage Area, are 8000 hectares of Huon Pine. This cross section of a trunk shows the growth rings so closely packed..

A view up the Gordon River..

Vegetation on Sarah Island..

The sawmill working the Huon Pine..
For a little light relief at the end of a day with stories of convicts, cruelty and hard labour, we drove west to Ocean Beach, a vast beach backed by spectacular sand dunes...

The strata within the sand is clearly seen here...

A trigger plant, which, I am reliably informed by Susan, traps any visiting insects with a flick of the 'trigger' on the back of the flower, until the insect is covered in pollen, at which point the plant uses the trigger to flick the insect out and on its way to pollinate another plant. Very clever!

The sand dunes - we had great fun running down them (not quite so much fun climbing up, though)

The vast stretch of beach with nobody to spoil the view...

As I said earlier, just wonderful!