May 29, 2012

Only 999 more steps to go :: the 1000 step rainforest walk


Step, step, step.
Stepping through the rainforest,
on a track beside a merry creek,
Up, up, up.
1000 steps up. 1000 steps back down.
This is the Kokoda Track Memorial Walk in the Dandenong Ranges,
just outside of Melbourne.
And on the weekend, between the autumn raindrops,
we discovered this amazing, very beautiful place.


Quiet enough for the tiny wrens to skip about,
little bothered by the strange humans who invent odd ways of keeping in shape.


 The walk has been built as a memorial to the soldiers who walked 
on the tough trail through the jungle of Papua New Guinea
during the second world war,
and to the Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels who cared for them,
often losing their own lives in the process.


And where better for quiet reflection than a rainforest,
where there is a sense of the ancient healing power of nature.
Tree ferns, so majestic with their lacy fronds 
twirling atop a dark single trunk,
were also home to a family of ground ferns climbing aboard for the ride.


And when we got to the end of our most fabulous trek,
what should be waiting in the rainforest,
 but a cafe, 
serving strong coffee and freshly made scones.
Bliss! 

images :: blue fruit
the 1000 step kokoda trek memorial walk, departs from the fern tree gully picnic ground,
dandenong ranges, melbourne

12 comments:

  1. How are your calves feeling after all those steps? Love the photo of the wren.

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    1. um....SORE!!!!...although it was only yesterday afternoon - 24 hours later I guess - that they suddenly said "hello! remember us?". But considering that a lot of people were actually running up and down the steps, while we just strolled, I think we got out of it pretty easily.

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  2. Beautiful photos! I must take a trip up to the steps one day. I love the Dandenong Ranges. In particular
    Miss Marples in Sassafras.

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    Replies
    1. Ok, I'm curious now. I'll have to check out Miss Marples!

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  3. This sounds gorgeous, and especially being a memorial. What a great idea. We try and go for overnight tramps in the NZ bush when we can. Just the most amazing 'space' to be - so free of any technology, hustle and bustle - just family, and the most incredible nature. And it's free!! Bliss for the head, maybe not so good for these unfit old knees on the big mountain climbs!! We don't have deadly creatures to avoid over here. I think that's what would put me off mountaineering in Australia. I guess you get used to it?? Rx

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    1. Hi Rachel, yes, I think it's just what you get used to - and it does vary in the different regions of Australia. When we lived in Darwin, where there were crocodiles in the creeks, I wasn't so keen on bushwalking near the edge of water! But as for snakes, which you are lucky enough not to have, they really are timid in Australia, and will bolt away themselves given half a chance. They are only aggressive when cornered. So it's not as if they are just simply lying about on the path ready to strike. Having said that, though, common sense prevails - and nature rules - so I do much prefer bushwalking outside of the summer months, when they are all tucked up asleep for a nice long winter!

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  4. Oh I did that a few months ago. That was tough but so rewarding. Remember hubby and I felt so good awards that we decided to do it every second weekend. Hmmm... Thanks for the reminder :) And must remember to have the coffee afterwards.

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    1. Every second weekend would be virtuous! Did you notice how many people were running? Yikes, some people are fit!

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  5. What fabulous photos. The trail does look so beautiful and freshly baked scones at the end - perfect. Such a lovely memorial which keeps the story alive for future generations. Annie x.

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    1. Yes, it keeps it real for the younger generations. Alistair had to listen to his mother's history lessons the whole way up. Not surprisingly, he made his own way down. Funny about that...

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  6. That's my favourite exercise trail! I haven't done it for a while as I've been unwell and only getting better now, but have started doing it again and it feels soooo good! I hope you enjoyed it. It's glorious on a sunny day. There's a 70-year-old couple who do it daily - he does it twice. Just incredible. I think the fastest time up and back is 10 minutes. The average is half an hour. (Although I think that time involves a bit of running.) I do the longer route - up the steps to the top and then down the steep long track back to the carpark -but I'm very slow so take an hour! Very shameful of my time. It's a good workout! Hope to see you there one day!
    Janelle McCulloch x

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  7. That's my favourite exercise trail! I haven't done it for a while as I've been unwell and only getting better now, but have started doing it again and it feels soooo good! I hope you enjoyed it. It's glorious on a sunny day. There's a 70-year-old couple who do it daily - he does it twice. Just incredible. I think the fastest time up and back is 10 minutes. The average is half an hour. (Although I think that time involves a bit of running.) I do the longer route - up the steps to the top and then down the steep long track back to the carpark -but I'm very slow so take an hour! Very shameful of my time. It's a good workout! Hope to see you there one day!
    Janelle McCulloch x
    PS I would have listened to your history lessons with great interest!

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