4/10 – 5/10/2013
The drive to Pemberton is picturesque as we go through forests opening up into undulating hills of green grass with cows or sheep grazing the fields. It really would have been a site for the early settlers with massive Karri tree forests which we learn we’re logged not once but twice in the last 200 years. The re-growth is quite young, about 80 years and still very impressive. The caravan park is nestled in amongst the forest with a lovely stream at the edge flowing quite strongly due to the recent rains. (Unfortunately the cost is a bit steep for the very average facilities.)
Due to the continuous showers of rain it would seem our best option is to take the Pemberton Tramway which takes you through the town and through the Karri, Marri and Jarrah forest. The driver is a wealth of knowledge spouting interesting facts about the area, the trees – botanical names and all -, early settlers and all with a humorous note. We stop at the Cascades and enjoy a short walk before we head through the forests again. One story about the Snotty Gobbler tree is very entertaining as it gets it name from the fruit, which when ripe, has an appearance of snot and the local indigenous community loved it so much they would quickly gobble it up. (Sorry I can’t remember the real botanical name for it.)
In the afternoon we take in a cider farm and go to the Wine and Truffle Co – just for something different. Amazingly we produce 70% of the worlds truffles so we just keep learning and learning. We still have a bit of time so we head to Beedalup Falls and I navigate the scary swing bridge before heading off on what we thought was a leisurely walk to a ‘walk through’ Karri tree. 40 minutes of a steep uphill climb really took it out of us and the tree was not all that fantastic but I guess the exercise did make it all worth while. I didn’t get to the Gloucester tree, at 60m it is the highest tree fire look out in the world, and you can climb up it, but with the wind and rain it probably was a good thing – something to come back for.