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  • Day136

    Great Ocean Road - Koala Hunting

    February 24 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    We wandered across the road and along a well mown path to get to the sea opposite the Coast House. We had been told to be aware of snakes, but the path was narrow and spiders had made webs across it, so we were most concerned about getting a face full of spider and web - actually I wasn’t concerned, Bun was walking in front! Always the gentleman, I walked at the front on the way back. Blackberries are out ... autumn is coming. In one months time we will be flying out of Australia ☹️

    We have seen koalas in rescue centres, hospitals and wildlife parks, but no wild koalas in their natural habitat. We have been told that there are a couple of places in this area where koalas are almost “guaranteed” - hope they are not like the manta rays and go on holiday when we go visiting!

    Kennet River is back along the road we drove down yesterday, there we found “Kafe Koala” which sounded like a good place to start. While planning and having a coffee, the Beatles “Hard Days Night” Album (I think, happy to be corrected) was playing in the background, not what we were expecting.

    Off up the track where we had been reassured we would find koalas hanging from every tree. We quizzed people who were walking back down from the forest and were reassured that koalas were up there.

    Several couples and families drove through the forest, not sure if they managed to see any. We were guided to a tree and yes, there was a koala in it. Known for sleeping 20 hours a day, they don’t move so there is no hope of a better pose. Fortunately the day was grey and overcast, OK , grey koalas against a grey sky may not be the best combination, but as there was usually sky behind them, they would have been nothing other than black shapes if the sky had been any brighter.

    Spotting koalas was difficult. Walking up hill, looking up into the sky when it’s raining means eyes hit with rain drops, neck ache and the risk of walking off the track and falling down the side of the steep hill. We knew that they sat in the cleft of branches so we initially looked near the tree trunks, but then found them draped quite a long way along branches.

    Well it was a successful walk, six or seven koalas later we were becoming koala 🐨 blind and decide to walk back to Bertha. On the way back down the track we met two minibuses with blacked out windows. The doors opened and out jumped a load of Chinese, some in suits, dresses etc looking very smart. One of the easiest ways of spotting a koala was to watch where others pointed their camera, but where’s the fun in that?

    After the excitement of koala hunting we walked along the river for a while and then drove back along the GOR to Apollo Bay, a historic town with a sandy beach where people can actually get into the sea, much of the coast along the GOR has been large waves crashing onto rocks.

    Wandered about, then back to The Coast House to edit and crop the photos.
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