Monday, October 15, 2012

Our day in the Otways

Armed with new exercise friends and a plan to see four waterfalls in a day, I met up with Casey and Debbie at 8am and we set off on our mission.  You know, left to my own devices I probably wouldn't even bother, but with great like minded and new friends by my side, we are pushing ourselves to our limits and it is just amazing the things I have been achieving.

Well we didn't just see 4 waterfalls, we saw 4 and a bit (haha! you'll have to keep reading to see what I mean by that), covered about 20 KILOMETRES in walking for the whole day (yes you read that right!!), that's approx 12.5 miles for my overseas friends.  We really firmed up new friendships, laughed like I have never laughed before, pushed my body to it's limits and then pushed some more, seen some magical sights and had a wonderfully exhilarating day, which ended with me walking back in the door here at home at about 10.15pm.   Wow!  What a day.

First Stop Melba Falls ...

Absolutely beautiful scenery that we were walking through, huge tree ferns, and the air was so clear, there was also a fair bit of laughing going on. 

Our walking also involved a lot of the dreaded steps.

But soon enough we were rewarded with the view of the falls.

And the obligatory selfie we took at each stop.  We were looking pretty keen, pretty eager to keep going, the day was young!! 

Next stop - Little Aire Falls...

Onward we went, a lot more traipsing to get to these falls, with a muddy trail that Casey soon found out about when she went slipping!   But the falls were beautiful.

The day was warming up and we were still eager.  Yet another selfie.

Onward to Triplet Falls ...

This was a neat loop of another 2.5 kilometres, and as the name implies there's three parts to these falls, these are my best captures. 

And of course the selfie at Triplet!

I was feeling pretty great at this stage, holy heck, I was walking kilometres!  Looking a little bit hot and flustered, but I was keeping up with the girls as fast as these old knees would let me.

On to Hopetoun Falls ...

After a picnic lunch, which I might say tasted better than anything!!  I was starving!  and with Beauchamp Falls out of action due to unsafe trees, landslide conditions, we headed on to Hopetoun Falls, I thought this was one of the prettiest falls we'd seen. 

And again the selfie, I'm wondering now looking at it, were our smiles just kind of only half there at this stage.  Our smiles are not quite reaching our eyes, if you know what I mean.  I know I was feeling quite stonkered but willing to keep up with the girls.

So that was four waterfalls in a day.  But surely we could fit something else in.  We decided on popping into Maits Rest, which was a beautiful walk amongst the lush green rainforest type conditions.  It was a great relaxing walk after our hard climbs.  Talk about replenishing the souls, this place was magic!

That was it, we'd done it!  But the niggling feeling that we could go one more kept at us.  After popping into Cape Otway Lighthouse and finding out the exhorbitant price just to go and check out the lighthouse, we spotted a sign ... Rainbow Falls ... 5.5 km.   Should we round off the day with a final 5.5 km walk?  It did sound exotic, we imagined a huge waterfall with the sun hitting it just so that a rainbow would be formed.  The itch had to be scratched.

Rainbow falls to finish up ...

So we set off walking ... and walking ... and still walking.   This was a different type of walk, it was beachy, it was sandy, there were scrubby wind blown plants.  The path took us up along the cliff face with a magnificent view, but heck!  Where were the falls???

We had been walking for about an hour and a half, and ended up down the dunes into the beach below.

Still walking, we had come this far, by hook or by crook we were going to find these jolly falls.  Until we came to this.  
W.T.F ????   
Were these Rainbow Falls?  Are you kidding me?  About a foot high?

By this stage we were delirious, we took the obligatory selfie.  We were hot, we were bothered.  And to be honest crazed laughter was taking place.

And quite frankly we were thinking about the traipse back, not to mention the sand dune we were going to have to climb back up.  It was then we realised the 5.5 km to the "supposed" (cough cough) falls was not a round trip number.  We had walked 5.5 km there and now we had to talk 5.5 km back!!!!!!

I swear on that way back, our legs were going by autopilot.  We weren't talking, we were just concentrating on putting one foot in front of the other.  The disappointment for our last so called waterfall was huge.  I was actually numb from walking by now.  I don't know how Debbie was able to operate the accelerator on the drive home!

Heading home we were driving back down the Cape Otway Lighthouse Road around 7pm and came across the most magical sight.  We saw koalas EVERYWHERE.  We looked up into the trees and they were like fruit, perched on all the branches, climbing from branch to branch, up and down trees, wandering everywhere.   We stopped and got out and were amazed and quite thrilled.  After the disappointment of Rainbow Falls, this was magic.  This was the PERFECT end to the day.

It was only when this bad assed angry koala came stomping down the road toward us, with the most impressive grunt and growl, did we realise we still had enough energy in our legs to run when it rounded us up we flew around the other side of the car and got out of its way !!  

It soon got dark and we stopped in at Lavers Hill Pub on the way home wondering if we could get a coffee. I think the poor publican who was sitting outside took pity on us and told us to come next door, he turned the lights on and unlocked the general store and got the coffee machine going for us.   Ahhhh, a latte never tasted so good!  

All in all a terrific day, I can't thank Casey and Debbie enough for pushing me out of my comfort zone, getting me out and about, enjoying the fresh air, enjoying pushing my body, enjoying the beautiful vista of the Otways.  We smashed Sunday for sure!

And dare I say, only after we turned to our friend Mr. Google today, we realised they weren't Rainbow Falls after all !!  Hysterical.   We had to walk perhaps another 500 metres up the beach, you can see a small colouring in the base of the cliff in this photograph, well THAT was Rainbow Falls!

Un - freaking - believable !


esther_a said...

What an adventure!! I can't believe your little waterfall adventure! And to even capture them in the distance in a photo - just to add insult to injury! What a scream! And as for that koala - are you sure he's not just being friendly? He looks like he's smiling to me ;)

Lynne said...

Wow! That's a lot to pack into one day! You should all be very proud of your achievement! And the koalas? What a bonus! You live in a great part of the country!

Polly said...

What a beautiful day out carol.