Philosopher Falls 2017 Oct

Philosopher Falls 2017 Oct

Can you feel the magic?
You would think that my trip to the base of Philosopher Falls would be totally marred by the fact that tripod number two (that is, the second tripod in two successive days) broke in my hands as I lined up for my first photo; however, Carrie and I had had such fun getting there, and the place was so magical, that it almost seemed as if photos didn’t matter. I felt as if I were in a holy spot, that I should use hushed whispers in a place that aroused such a spiritual feeling. It is a stunningly beautiful place, with its dramatic drop and white lines of flow, its mossy trees dripping with lichen and its shining rocks; this beauty is then further enhanced by the knowledge that not too many people manage to come that way; it is a kind of secret spot. Waterfalls of Tasmania says where we were standing is “inaccessible”. I like defying challenges like that.

The reason not too many people come that way is that it’s actually quite difficult getting there. The navigation, even if you own, and are competent at using, a gps is quite tricky, as the dense canopy interferes with the satellite signals. My gps, for example, said that we climbed half way up the side opposite the falls, which we did not. Because the ground is so dense, it is hard to see exactly what the contours are doing; your vision is obstructed by piles of giant fallen trees (which you have to clamber over, or under, or try somehow to get around). And then, there is the problem that this is an ancient and decaying forest, so it is possible (Carrie tried it a few times) for you to tread on a log that disintegrates under your weight, however diminutive that might be, so you can easily fall. I’ve seen a guy break his leg that way. This is not country to be in alone. One early explorer noted that if he trod on a log and it collapsed and he broke his leg, he would probably die, as no one would find him. One treats this land with respect.

And so, it took us far longer than we thought it would to reach a point where I excitedly announced to Carrie that we had done it, and we only had to climb up and over this spur in front of us and drop down the steep other side and we would be there. We were jubilant at the bottom. I didn’t look at my watch, as I didn’t want to feel guilty about my husband waiting wherever it was that he was waiting. I wanted to enjoy the moment. I only snuck a peak when we’d finished enjoying ourselves with our cameras and were ready to set out on our return journey.
Things were much faster on the way back, and we were at the car in time for lunch. I settled into a nook in the forest and devoured my salad roll with gusto. I had worked up quite an appetite. Even in the carpark, the forest has a wonderful feel to it. Viva Tarkanya.

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