Monday, 19 August 2013

Exploring Goobang

Saturday I said to Terry .. 'Watchya up to today?' and he replies .. 'Workin'

Meh, that's boring. So I say .. 'My back's hurting, I need to go for a walk, wanna come?' and he replies .. 'Where at?'

Well I had no idea. I knew I wanted to walk in the bush but I really didn't know where to go. We ummed and ahhed about it for a while. Then I turned on the computer and had a look at some sites for walking trails around Dubbo. Meh, none of them turned me on til I found ... Goobang National Park.

Terry has mentioned this place before but, like me, he's never been there. It's about 50km along the road to Parks then you take another road about 18km's til you get to the turn off. Not too far away for a quick drive and we could take Gizmo the amazing Staffy.

'Right!' said Terry, 'I'll just finish up here and we'll head out!'

I knew I had time to get ready, so I looked at some maps, then printed one out, then cleared my camera and packed it in it's bag ready to go. Then I decided I had time to go out into the garden and snap a few pics.

We have a few flowers that are going nuts at the moment, this winter has been so mild and it almost feels like spring is here already.

First there's the Happy Wanderer (Hardenbergia violacea) that Terry stuck in the ground last Autumn and that the both of us forgot about for a while. Til it started flowering about  week ago.

 It was an easy enough shot, but I haven't picked up the camera in a couple of weeks so it took me a bit to remember what to do. Then I heard the bee. I had to try to get a shot of him. Shooting a busy bee is hard I realised. He's constantly on the move, in the end I got a lot of out of focus shots of him then he came and sat right in the middle of my focus for a fraction of a second. Still not the best shot but it's not too bad I think.

Then I went off shooting other flowers, it wasn't until I noticed the tree at our side fence (that we still don't know the name of) has a couple of flowers on it that I started thinking about how I was setting up the lighting for my photos.

I made them a bit darker and shot them with the light behind them and I like the outcome.

I decided to try it with the Spider Grevillia that I'd already shot. I put the light behind it and came out with the best pic I've taken I think.

I was sitting at the computer uploading these few pics when Terry came up behind me and said 'I'm ready'

What?! You're never ready before me ... how did that happen?

We bundled camera and dog into the car then off we went for an adventure. It wasn't hard to find the place and after grabbing a sandwich on the way we were all ready to go wandering through the bush. As we got closer to the park we noticed that this is different bush to what we were wandering in a couple of weeks ago at Mt Arthur, there were bigger trees here and a lot more undergrowth.

We pulled into the driveway where there's a sign that says 'Caution Pig Baits are Laid in this park' it gave dates that they lay them and tells you that they are dangerous to other animals such as dogs. Well the last date was two months ago but we decided to keep a close eye on Giz anyway. The next sign pointed down two forks in the road, one to a camping area, I knew there were walking tracks around there from the website, the other pointed to a lookout. We somewhat rashly decided to take the road to the lookout.

One of the things that I was looking for was a sign that said 4WD only but this road looked alright ... until we passed the sign that said the lookout was 6.2km ahead. It wasn't long before the road started to really deteriorate, I paused a couple of times and said to Terry 'Do ya think the beasty can make it through/up that?' 'Yeah sure' was his response every time. And she did make it although when we heard something bang along under the car from one end to the other we both got a bit worried .. neither one of us had seen that rock. The next time the road levelled out with a wide enough spot I pulled over and said 'Right we walk from here'

All my photos on the day have sun reflections on the lens, I need to remember to put in the lens shade thingy on these trips.

Across the road from where we stopped we spotted a picnic table, there was just no way to get to it without going bush ...

One of my favourite plants is called a Black Boy, and there were plenty of them up here,

As they mature they get this kinda black stamen that sticks out of the top of them, they look really cool ..

Terry and Giz had a close look at one .. 'It's leaking sap stuff' he said ...

Then Terry spotted the surveyor's thingy up there that Terry told me is called a Trig Station. It's used by surveyors to take readings somehow.

He liked it lots :)

Then I wandered off to find some flowers to snap ...

There were lots of these around, some pretty little white ones too and I spotted one bush with these pretty little blue bells. I photoshopped this one a bit, I really like the way those bright blue flowers show up against the sepia background.

But the original pic looks pretty good too.

Terry and Giz headed up the road while I was snapping away.

It wasn't too much further til we reached the lookout.

Down a short flight of stairs and we were greeted with one of the most amazing views that I've ever seen.

I tried to do a panoramic photo but it still just doesn't do full justice to the awe inspiring view that we were facing.

Then to top it all off Terry noticed a bird flying way down below us.

'That's an eagle' I said excitedly, then as we watched we noticed that there were about 4 or 5 of them flying around below and above us. They were everywhere!!

Now I was wishing I'd brought my long lens, oh well I could watch them souring for hours! But .. it was cold up there. We soon headed back to the car. It had actually taken us the better part of 40 minutes or so to get the 6 km up here so we decided to head back down to see if we could get a walk in today.

Coming down the hill was much scarier than going up, but we only slid once and no rocks jumped up at us this time. About half way there are some guard rails and street signs along this 4WD trail, it was kinda weird.

The little beasty made it without a hiccup through everything we threw at her that day.

By the time we got back to the turn off for the camping area it was starting to get late, and cold. We headed over to the camping area to check out what the tracks look like. There's a whole heap of them of various difficulties, the sign showed a good map of them. It also said that dogs weren't allowed in the Park .. hmm I was remembering to warning sign earlier that said that there were baits that were dangerous to dogs .. does that mean that dogs aren't allowed but we know you're going to bring them so be careful cause there's baits. The other interesting thing was the sign pointing out that if you have a trail bike or a 4WD you might like to go check out the lookout, yet nowhere along that road did it say that it was suitable for 4WD only ... meh our little beasty didn't mind roughing it.

We'll have to come back soon to ramble along some of those tracks.


  1. Great post! Loved reading it and seeing the australian landscapes! And gorgeous flower photos! I am actually always looking for 4WD tracks with the jeeps :) Your car is a tough little one (plus good driving ;) ). It's also good that they put signs up about poison, over here in morocco they put loads out everywhere, but never warn you about it, we have to be so careful while walking our dog.
    Have a great week!

    1. Thanks Bel :)

      I actually thought of you while we were driving up the worst part of the trail and said to Terry 'wouldn't this be great on quad bikes!' he agreed :)

      The little Astra did well I thought, dunno bout the driving, I was just going slow and trying to avoid scary bits!

      Yeah the warning sign was a great idea, I've never seen it anywhere else either, I think they should be law if you are laying baits anywhere.

  2. So glad you were able to get out for a hike. What a beautiful view too.

    Love the flower photos. neat to see ones we don't grow here.

    1. Ta Brandy :) Yep it was a stunner of a view but the photo really doesn't do it justice, I'd love to go back up there with more camera gear but I dont think Terry would let me unless we can borrow a 4WD

      There is such a varitey of flowers out there isn't there, I love looking at them and photographing them .. I also love looking at your photos of them :)