Start of Bibbulmun Track Virtual Trek Day 9
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
After 8 days in Australia, we finally started our trek at the Kalamunda Northern Terminus where we headed south through Kalamunda National Park. This track was named after the Bibbulmun Nyoongar people, and Aboriginal group that journeyed on foot over long distances for ceremonies. The trail markers are yellow triangles with a snake, which represents a mythical Rainbow Serpent, an Aboriginal dreamtime animal, who they believe created this land.
Out trek took us through a forest that contained marris, wandoos and jarrahs all of which are species of eucalyptus. All of these trees produce white flowers and the marris are also referred to as bloodwoods or red gum trees, while the wandoos can be referred to as white gum trees. There were also many grass trees and different kinds of orchids. These forests are home to kangaroo, echidras (spiny ant eaters), bandicoots (small to medium sized, rat looking, marsupials), and many birds, including black cockatoos, bronze wing pigeons, and kookaburras.
We walked through Mann's Gully and climbed to the southern rim of the Helena River Valley, which crosses the Mundaring Weir, where the longest fresh water pipeline in the world begins. This was something to see, kind of like a modern version of the Roman aqueducts. We saw some people on camel back and I was thinking that would be a much easier way to make this trek, oh well.
We made camp at the Beraking Campsite for the night. I used all this exercise as an opportunity to eat things I wouldn't usually; such as dried salami and plenty of dried fruits. I also have a supply of rice crackers, dehydrated veggie chips, nuts, and Thai rice noodle soup packages that I can add dehydrated veggies and chicken to.
With dinner over and the sun beginning to set it was time to turn in for the night. With no nearby towns to provide light, the pitch black sky was a perfect backdrop for a blanket of twinkling stars. It was a very quite and peaceful way to turn in our first night.