Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Up What Creek?

Saturday we had a little family trip. We dumped the kids in the car and took off to Alligator Creek*... Or rather, Alligator Rocky Creek Bed. I realised it's been a while since I've been there. Wolf and I were trying to figure it out on the way there, we think for both of us the last time we were there we went together but it was before we were dating so it's around 10 years ago... it's only 20 minutes out of town and it's been 10 YEARS! Oh well. Some things were the same, no change to the overall layout of the area, lots of rocks to climb over, scrub turkeys to chase, wallabies to hunt, stuff like that. Some things were different... like... there used to be water! I am sure it will come back in the wet season which starts soon but I have NEVER seen it with whole dry sections.

I remember times it was flowing so fast when we were there with friends we all had to wear life vests and the dad of the other family tied a rope from one side to the other and we had to stay up-stream of the rope so we could save ourselves with it if the current got too strong (MUM, WHAT WERE YOU THINKING LETTING US GO IN LIKE THAT???). I remember other times that it was flowing so fast the ranger had closed it! Today there was just a sign saying the swimming hole was stagnant and swimming is not recommended. There was spots like this all over the place too...

Still, after I got over my initial concern about where the turtles and eels are living while there is a severe shortage of suitable homes for them we had fun clambering about on the rocks.

The boys straight away wanted to climb up on the biggest rock around... Mean mummy insisted that Daddy go up there with them... I don't know what I was worried about??

I made sure Wolf got some proof that Monkey and I were there as well. This is how the littlest McTavish spent most of his afternoon

The extra muslin around the outside was his shade cover, I would tuck it in up at the shoulder strap when we were in the sun and he would whinge and chuck a fuss and then when we went back in the shade I'd take it down and he'd go back to sleep. Dragon asked me "Mummy, are you a kangaroo with a pouch?" He was very interested in spotting some little wallabies and hopefully one with a joey in it's pouch.

I remember this rock being underwater when I was REALLY little. Then a cyclone changed the way the creek went a bit and it was out of the water anywhere from a few centimetres to a metre.

Now it's almost entirely surrounded by sand and rocks and is about 2.5 metres high.

We headed back up to the picnic area to see if we could spot some wallabies... we saw one from the track as we were walking up, we saw one as we got up there UP ON A BBQ! I got some really bad photos of that on the other camera but they are REALLY bad. There was one little girl who wanted to be browsing the picnic area but didn't want to be near us so we pretended that we didn't see her as we posed for photos...

and then when she was feeling a little more comfortable we got some shots of her...

I think she's a Pretty Faced Rock Wallaby. Her face markings weren't really prominent though. Unfortunately she wasn't fond of being photographed and took off. So I took some photos of that too :)

I love the way they jump!!!

There was another visitor after we finished our box of Tiny Teddies... He just sat and watched for a bit, I was starting to get concerned he thought my Monkey was a little morsel of food for him to snaffle.

This is a Blue Wing Kookaburra, BEAUTIFUL! These guys only have half a laugh and apparently they need two of them to laugh... but I am pretty sure we have just one that laughs for us at horrible early morning hours in the tree outside our house.

I think I was feeling kind of wonky on Saturday because all the photos I took seem to be on a bit of a lean, one way or another. Could have been the little joey in my pouch tipping me off balance too.

It was a lovely afternoon, I can see us here in a couple of years when all the kids are walking, Wolf and I on camp chairs reading, the kids traumatising rock wallabies and scrub turkeys. It was nice to be away from the smoke that has engulfed our house and annoyed my sinuses (on top of the cold I've picked up) and in spite of the horrible high temperatures we've been having it was nice and cool in the shade... We will be back... before another 10 years passes!

*It's just a name, we have no Alligators in Australia (not in the wild anyway). There are Crocodiles further down stream from here but this is a safe swimming hole... or so we are lead to believe.


  1. I love the close up photo of you and Cameron. You should make this your facebook profile photo!

  2. Last time I visited my home town I went out to the dam we spent our weekends camping,fishing and boating at and now its dry, no water at all..and they think there never will be again..sad

  3. woooow... I have never seen completely dried up spots either, and I generally go there at least once a year.

    The creek usually gets closed a few times a year, either because the water is so stagnant it's not safe to swim in, or because there's just been a deluge of rain and it's too swollen.

    I still can't believe there are some spots that have completely dried up.

    Is that rock (the one you specifically mentioned) the one about 3/4 of the way across, in the main swimming section? I remember when that used to be under water. Actually... I didn't recall it ever being much above the surface. Perhaps I am thinking of a different rock.

  4. Note from Grannysaurus to MMcT re: What was I thinking?
    Actually I don't think I was there. I was believing that you were in the care of responsible adults and I can probably guess which responsible adult thought that was an okay safety precaution. I often thank God that my 3 children actually survived to adulthood in spite of their parents. Guardian angels rock!

  5. What a fun place to go! I did wonder at the name though - being that there are no alligators here! At least it meant you could swim. What a shame it has no water in at the moment- it seems everything is drier over the last few years. Great pictures of the animals - i can never get close enough to get good pictures of the birds around here.

  6. Precious, just beautiful, all of it. All of you. Congratulations on your beautiful family and all of the blessings in your life.

    I so, so want to visit Australia! I have a student studying at the Sydney Opera Conservatory, and she loves it!

  7. Looks like a great day out We also opted for a fun weekend this past one.

  8. What beautiful countryside,even if it's a tad on the dry side. It would be good to revisit once it rains (and everyone is old enough to keep away from those fast currents). And a very pretty wallaby too!
    Glad to hear you all had a great day out.

  9. Now how cool is that! I might be able to catch a shot of a stray dog in my neck of the woods--but certainly not a wallaby! Looks like a great day was had by all--and that little Monkey is just the sweetest!!!


  10. I don't know why I liked hearing that it takes two Kookaburras to make one laugh. Friendship at its funnest!

  11. Wow! That looks like you had a great time! Little Monkey McT looks soooo cute!

  12. It is so neat seeing the wallaby! They must be like our deer out here in our forests. Now, if I saw a wallaby I'd think it was the best thing ever because we only see them in the zoos! Are they the same as Kangeroos or are they a little smaller? I mean is a wallaby the same term as kangeroo?

    It looks so beautiful there. I would love to visit you someday and have you take me to see those huge rocks! Your country is beautiful! (and so is your family!)

    P.S. and so are you! I love seeing more of you!

  13. @Leah - as you come off the path to the creek you turn left towards the water and it is the rock that for the last 15 years has been right at the waters edge. from the shore you can walk out on level rock and the other side (right behind the boys) drops away steeply.

    @Grannysaurus - I am pretty sure you were there... it's okay, I wont be stopping you from looking after my children ;)

    @Renata - Did you know that for a country with no Alligators we actually have a dozen or so Alligator creeks? weird.

    @Sandra - after going back with the kids I absolutely want to go for a picnic during the wet season (which supposedly starts next month but I wont hold my breath)

    @Lisa - You're so sweet, yes, a wallaby is a smaller animal than a kangaroo. Less likely to get vicious (which I am guessing you would never have expected from a kangaroo anyway) and with finer features and less muscular looking.

    @Everyone - YES, it is beautiful, come for a visit!

  14. LOVE the pictures!!! That little Monkey of your sure is growing!!!!! He is so stinkin' sweet!!!

    Mrs. Nurse Boy


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