Where are we now?

Where are we now?
Where are we now? Tahmoor, NSW. Updated 7th December 2011

Friday, July 29, 2011

Day 180. Litchfield Park to Edith Falls

A change in plans

Today we leave Litchfield National Park, and I can see why so many people seem to like it here more than Kakadu National Park. It’s an oasis of natural springs, waterfalls and beautiful crystal clear swimming holes. It provides limitless places to escape the heat thus making it a hard one to resist. But there is no culture here; no aboriginal art, billabongs, big ‘salties’, or the scenery Kakadu is so famous for. So what I am trying to say is they simply can’t be compared, because they are so completely different. We have loved both, and both for completely different reasons.

The plan for today was to move onto Daly River to try my hand at catching a barra, but with my tooth still hurting and the birth of the new baby calling me home, we’ve decided the detour could wait for another trip.

We stopped in at the ‘Batchelor Butterfly Farm’ because of Scarlett’s love for butterflies. Shane stayed in the caravan uploading the last couple of days blogs; (with the internet now back in service here) while Scarlett and I went in. The gardens were lovely; it felt like we were in wonderful little fairy glen. There were day beds, swinging chairs and cool water features making it a little tropical haven for butterflies. The really cool big butterflies were housed in a walk in shade house, which had so many plants and a little water course running around the perimeter.

There was an array of species to be found, including: Ulysses, Wanderer, Egg Fly, Lurcher and Cruiser butterflies. We spent ages just walking around the shade house trying to get them to land on our fingers, and to get a photo of the spectacular Ulysses butterfly. While I was relaxing outside on one of the swing chairs, Scarlett was walking around with the gardener who explained all the different plants in the garden and why each one was special for attracting butterflies. She even cut some fresh flowers for Scarlett to take back with her; and we ended up pressing a couple and put the rest in a cup of water - a really nice gesture.

The famous Charlie
It is a big drive today, as we have now decided to stop at ‘Edith Falls’; which is over 250km’s away. We missed this spot on the way north into Kakadu as they had no vacancies, but calling ahead this time we were luckier. Along the way we stopped at the famous ‘Adelaide River Roadhouse’ which is home to ‘Charlie’ the buffalo out of the movie ‘Crocodile Dundee’. Unfortunately Charlie is no longer living out the back of the pub alive and well in his pen as once was the case, but is now stuffed and resides over the bar. It was a really cool to see him, even if Scarlett had a hard time understanding how he looked so real but was in fact long dead.

After some lunch in a park overlooking the river, we were soon back out on the road. I always look out my window when we pass over any water course in hope of seeing a croc, and until today I never actually have. As we passed over the bridge at ‘Fergusson River’ I looked down over the guard rail and sunning itself out of the water on a rock was a 1.5mtr croc. I was so excited but there was nowhere to turn around or pull over so I will now never know if it was a ‘saltie’ or ‘freshie’, oh well.

When we got to Edith Falls we were straight out of the car and into our swimmers; heading down to check out the falls. The pool here is huge, and the falls were way across over on the other side; so we put on our snorkel and goggles and hit the water for the long swim across. The water was very fresh, and with the swim across so big we brought along Scarlett’s swimming noodle in case she got tired.

Edith Falls

When we finally made it over to the waterfall the current was so strong we couldn’t get very close to it. We climbed out nearby and soaked up the warm sun rays and caught our breath. Shane swam down to the base of the waterfall, and said he could see so many fish; big ones too! It’s a pity you can’t fish here.

Shane and Scarlett on the swim back

Lucky we did bring the noodle across, as Scarlett got really tired on the swim back and we had to give her a little push to help get her across. It was a big swim but well worth it. We all felt great when we finally made it back. Fully refreshed from today’s big drive, we sat around and had a drink outside of the van. The weather is fantastic here with the sun slowly setting and the temperature really mild.

We cooked a BBQ for dinner on the free gas BBQ’s at our site, and enjoyed every mouthful. I think today we really earned it.

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