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Daily Archives: 08/09/2013

Saturday 7 September

For Freddy, from whom I first learned about Lawn Hill.

We drove up from Adel’s Gorge to Boodjamulla / Lawn Hill National Park soon after breakfast.

The morning canoe paddle began on a placid waterway. The fish were jumping and darters were drying their wings before their next piscine onslaught.  Schools of Archer Fish and Sooty Grunters swam beneath us, and cuckoos flew above.  It was early enough in the morning for the breeze to be cool and for some shade to be cast by the cliff faces.

The trip up the Middle Gorge requires a 2 minute canoe drag to the Upper Gorge.  Not a mean feat given we had a three-man canoe and only one man was pulling it.

As I was getting back into the canoe, the distance between the vessel and the small jetty rapidly increased. Let’s just say it was at a pace that beat my reflexes.

From the water, I reverted to my go-to curse word (an ungracious but hugely satisfying response under the circumstances) as Himself kept his cool, reminding me that my camera case had joined me in the drink.

Me: “*!#*!  !#*!”

Himself: “Camera! Camera!”

Any shin grazes and bruises aside, the camera and lenses survived. The second leg was happily uneventful.

Lawn Hill Gorge - canoeunderwater lilies - Lawn Hill Gorge

waterfall vignette - Lawn Hill Gorge

Archer fish - Lawn Hill Gorge

cascade bubbles - Lawn Hill Gorge

Adel’s Grove is a shady and luxuriant camping spot in the midst of some pretty dry territory.

paperbark cross-section - Adel's Grove Adel's Grove reflections

En route to the shade and water, we visited the Riversleigh Fossil World Heritage Site where fragments of the Thunderbird, a 5 metre Freshwater Crocodile and an ancient ancestor of the Gulf Snapping Turtle can be found in situ on public display.

Here’s a lower leg of the “Big Bird”, a limb cross-section of the crocodile and pieces of the turtle’s shell.

Riversleigh panorama

Thunderbird leg fossil

limb cross-section - freshwater crocodile

Freshwater chelid turtle shell fragment fossil