November 13, 2010

top ten nature experiences I’ve already had

  1. visiting Lady Elliot Island on the Great Barrier Reef and seeing a turtle hatching.  The next day we found a baby turtle that had been misled by the light’s on the island and headed inland. 
  2. climbing Uluru.  Not the culturally correct thing to do, but I climbed the rock a long time ago before this was common knowledge.  Watching the sunset over Uluru is also a magical experience.
  3. visiting Australia’s Central Desert (think of the landscape of Mad Max movies).  Hot, dusty and full of hidden wonders.
  4. walking at Cradle Mountain – Lake St Clair National Park in Tasmania.  It was snowing in December.  A few days later in Hobart, we experienced the hottest December day on record!
  5. camping and scuba diving on Lady Musgrave Island on the Great Barrier Reef.  The island is open only to campers and day trippers and it was truly getting away from life as we know it.
  6. working in the shadow of Mt Taranaki in NZ’s north island, flying in a helicopter for the first time and catching a unique view of Mt Taranaki on a clear day from a beach half a day’s travel from the mountain (sorry I can’t remember the name of the place, we were laying seismic cables across people’s farms).
  7. seeing a squirrel for the first time in the UK.  This was during my first trip to the Northern Hemisphere.  I was in the middle of a big town, but it felt like a fairytale to see for the first time one of the animals so familiar from storybooks of my childhood IMG_0977
  8. going fishing here in the Top End, catching barramundi metres away from crocodiles and other wetland wildlife.
  9. flying over Kakadu National Park in the wet season with all the waterholes, rivers and waterfalls in flood.  The flight was terrible though – it was a small plane with no airconditioning (it was about 35C) and nearly everyone was sick. Franz Josef Glacier
  10. travelling around NZ’s South Island.  The sightseeing highlights were Milford Sound and the Fox and Franz Josef glaciers.  But we really enjoyed gold panning, jetboating and the snow around Queenstown
There are so many other memorable little moments, but these are the ten experiences that most come to mind, with that ‘You’ve got to see it’ feeling.


Debi said...

What a wonderful list! Had to smile at your excitement at seeing a squirrel for the first time - these critters live all over my neighborhood! :o)

Joni Llanora said...

Wow, I'm so jealous of what you have experienced. Because my daughter has a disability, we rarely take hikes or nature tripping as it is way exhausting. Though we enjoyed a trip to Rangitoto island aboard a bus in Auckland once - a volcano island.