Monday, February 06, 2017

The Living Desert State Park


We've now made two trips to the Living Desert State Park. This is just outside Broken Hill and easy to get to. In fact, you can see Broken Hill from the top
of the hill in the park. The first time we went it was about to rain.



As a result, we got some pretty dramatic skies. This is view back towards Broken Hill. This hill toward the left side that you see is the place where the memorial to the miners is located. It is really big and dominates the CBD.


But on the second visit, it was bright and sunny. The temperature was in the mid-80's and the humidity was low making it fairly pleasant to walk in the sunshine. There is a section of the park that is fenced with an electric fence (to keep the 'roos out, I reckon). In here is a place with native plants, some with name plates so you know who they are.

There are also birds. We saw several new ones here, some of which I got photos that look kinda like the bird. First is the Zebra Finch. There are hoses running about the park to water the plants and keep water available, apparently, for the animals, too. We found these birds by a small shaded pool.


The one with the orange spot on his cheek is the male and the one without is the female.



Further along the path, we found another new bird in a tree. This one has us stumped. We have no idea what sort of fellow this one is.


Back a the water pool is a friend from the roadside rest stop on the way to White Cliffs. This is the Spiny-Cheeked Honey Eater.


At the top of the highest hill in the park are a series of carved rock statues. While these are pretty nice, they mostly look like rocks and aren't nearly as interesting as the scenery from the top of the hill. I know I keep showing you pictures of mostly nothing, but it is captivating.

Standing on this hill, we could listen to the wind in the trees around us and the chirps and calls of the birds near and far.


There are no man-made sounds. There are no planes overhead and no condensation trails where they passed over. There are no car engine sounds. No people talking. Just nature. In the distance, there are no houses, no roads, no trucks hauling long distance. If I turn around, I see the road that leads down this hill and back to main road to Broken Hill. But looking in this direction is solitude. We are standing less than 12 km from the house we are sitting, but we might as well be a hundred kilometers away. Or a thousand. This view can't be very different from what people (and before them, animals) have see from this spot since there have been people (or animals) here. Like standing at the shore, to be here is to be on the edge of a wondrous thing. A thing that is not entirely knowable. And like the ocean, there are secrets out there that are hard to see.

Until you really look.