Welcome to Life Images by Jill

LIFE IMAGES BY JILL............."Stepping into the light" and bringing together the stories and images of our world........
Through my writing and photography I seek to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.

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Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........
I am a Freelance Journalist and Photographer based in Bunbury, Western Australia. My published work specialises in Western Australian travel articles and stories about inspiring everyday people. I have a day job, but my passion is photography, writing, travel, wildflower and food photography. For now my day job supports me until I can pursue my passions full time.
I am a member of South Side Quills in Bunbury, the Fellowship of Australian Writers Western Australia, Photography Group of Bunbury and the Western Australian Photographic Federation.

I hope you enjoy scrolling through my blog. To visit other pages, please click on the tabs above, or go to my Blog Archive on the side bar. Please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of any of my posts. I value your messages and look forward to hearing from you.

If you like my work, and would like to buy a print, or commission me for some work, please go to my "contact me" tab. Thank you for visiting my blog and helping me "step into the light".

Welcome!

Welcome!

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Pilbara camping in Karijini National Park, Western Australia

Getting ready for a camping holiday always involves a bit (or a lot) of planning. 

There is the camper trailer to check over and make sure everything is in it that needs to be. There are lists to be made and ticked off, a rough plan of where we are going drawn up, meals to plan and cooking, dehydrating and food shopping to to be done, our vehicle to be checked over and the extra spare tyre to be hauled onto the roof, washing done and clothes packed, organise someone to collect the mail and put out the rubbish bins.

 Ooooo....there seems to be a lot of chocolate in there! Oh well you have to have some little luxuries when you are camping in the bush.

But finally we are on our way and as the sun comes up over the road ahead we sigh a sigh of contentment. 


At the end of the first week of July we headed off to Karijini National Park in Western Australia's Pilbara region. It is school holiday time, and we know it will be busy, but really July is the best weather for visiting Karijini and it's amazing gorges.

Our first night on the road was at Bilyuin Pool, on the Murchison River 88km north of Meekatharra. This free camping spot had been recommended to us by our son and daughter-in-law, and it was the first time we had been there. They were right - it was beautiful - peaceful and quiet and away from the road noise.  Not too many people - just the way we like it. A great start to our holiday.


Travelling up from Perth along the Great Northern Highway, it is about 1,400 kms from Perth to Karijini - a 2 day drive. It is a long way - so allow plenty of time to get there.  I wouldn't recommend driving at night as kangaroos and wandering stock are a hazard (the station country has no fences along the roads) and you wouldn't want to hit one.  You will also come across road trains hauling giant mining equipment like you can see below. They like to take up their fair share of the road. You need to take a lot of care if you intend passing and make sure the road is clear and straight and you can see a long way ahead. They take longer to get past than you might think.


We arrived in Karijini mid afternoon our second day. From approx July to September and particularly during the July school holidays they have camp hosts at the Dales Gorge camping area who allocate camping sites, do maintenance and are on hand to answer questions etc.  We were given a site in Dingo loop, set up camp and soon had the kettle on the boil.  

A few things you might like to know about Karijini camping if you have never been there. You need to bring all your food, drinking water and fuel. There is no electricity, toilets are of the "long drop" variety ie not flushing, there are no showers although you can pay for a shower at the Visitor Centre, and no mobile or internet connection (there is a public phone at the Visitor Centre). It's not for everyone, but we love it.  You can get untreated water from the water tank near the Visitor Centre (boil before drinking), and we have a pop up shower. Our campsite was just opposite a communal BBQ area where there was free gas BBQ and gas rings, which was perfectly located for us for boiling water, and using the BBQ to do some of our cooking. 



Karijini National Park is located in the Hamersley Ranges in the heart of Western Australia's Pilbara. 

WA's second biggest national park, Karijini covers 627,445 hectares.  Much of the southern half of the park is inaccessible, so visitors concentrate on the spectacular and rugged gorges in the north that plunge hundreds of metres down from the Spinifex plains.


Dales Gorge from the rim walk


 Karijini was first explored by FT Gregory’s party in 1861.  The traditional owners, the Banyjima, Yinhawangka and Kurrama Aboriginal people, call the Hamersley Ranges, Karijini, so the park’s name recognises this historic link and their continuing involvement in park management.


There are a number of gorges and walk trails to explore at Karijini, ranging from short, easy walks for people of all ages and fitness levels, tracks for those with moderate fitness, to trails which should only be attempted by very fit, experienced, well-equipped bushwalkers. But please be aware there is an element of risk, especially for inexperienced or unfit walkers, and young children.  Deaths have occurred in Karijini. Flash floods can occur, so if it rains while you are in a gorge, please get out of the gorge as safely and quickly as possible.

Dales Gorge camping area is walking distance to Dales Gorge and Fortescue Falls.

The walk trail takes you 800 metres down to Fortescue Falls and Fern Pool, and then a two kilometre (3 hrs return) walk trail through Dales Gorge to Circular Pool. Or alternatively you can do the 2km (1.5 hr return) rim walk. 
Fortescue Falls is spring-fed and is the Park’s only permanent waterfall.  The Falls tumble over layers of iron-stone rock from the tree lined Fern Pool.  A wooden walkway takes you right to the waters edge and the pool is a perfect place to sit in the shade or have a swim to cool off.   


The trail following the creek from Fortescue Falls to Circular Pool is Class 4 (moderately difficult) with some rock scrambling and you  should allow at least half a day to experience the Gorge.  Make sure you bring drinking water, food, and wear sturdy boots and a hat. It can get very hot in the gorges even in July (winter). 

There are plenty of places to sit and enjoy the beautiful landscape and to marvel at the Snappy Gums whose roots cling to the cliff walls, their white trunks in stark contrast to the red rocks and blue sky.  You wonder how they grow there.



 The walk finishes at Circular Pool, a deep fern lined pool surrounded by sheer cliffs.  Shaded most of the day by the gorge walls, the water is enticing, but icy cold.  My pictures really do not show what it is like to look down into the depths of Circular Pool from the rim walk. Delicate Maiden Hair ferns grow naturally here out of the rock faces around Fern Pool and Circular Pool.

 The climb out of Circular Pool is a very steep ascent over loose rocks and gravel, so care needs to be taken.  There is also a short ladder section to be negotiated.  
 From here we walked back to our campsite. 


25km from the Visitor Centre is Kalamina Gorge. This would be my favourite gorge in Karijini. It is a class 4 (moderate difficult) trail, but it is relatively easy to climb down the steps into the gorge. There is a large pool fed by a waterfall where you can swim not far from where you walk in. From here the 3 km trail (3 hours return) takes you across large pieces of flat rock and beside the stream through the gorge. It is a lovely walk. I will let my pictures tell the story.




And that spiky spinifex ? - in the early morning and late afternoon light it turns to gold. 



I hope you have enjoyed the first part of my journey to Karijini National Park. Next week we travel across the park to Jofre, Knox, Hancock, Weano and Hamersley Gorges and to Mount Bruce.  I hope you will join me then.


 If you would like some more information on Karijini National Park please go to the WA Department of Parks and Wildlife by clicking here - Karijini National Park 
Camping is available at Dales camping area and the Karijini Eco Retreat. Park entrance and camping fees apply. Generators are permitted in some sites. Pets are not allowed as this is a National Park. Please take your rubbish away with you. 

 Thanks for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. Have a wonderful week.

Mulla Mulla
I am linking up to Mosaic Monday, Travel Photos Monday, Our World Tuesday, Wednesday Around the World, Travel Photo Thursday, and What's It Wednesday.  Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Travel Photo Mondays
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global

What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday


You might also like 
Granite & Woodlands Discovery Trail - Hyden to Norseman, Western Australia 
Everlasting magic - Mid-west Western Australia 
Sunset over spinifex - camping in world heritage Purnululu, Western Australia 

Monday, 21 July 2014

Everlasting magic - midwest Western Australia

We have been away for the last 2 weeks travelling and camping in our Pilbara and Mid-West region through Karijini National Park, Mt Augustus, Kennedy Ranges and Coalseam. The wildflowers particularly on our way south between Murchison and Mullewa in the Mid-West region were starting to come into bloom. The everlasting wildflowers were opening their white, pink and yellow faces, and spreading across the red dust like a carpet through the trees as far as you could see. It is hard to show you how magnificent there were.


 Those of you who have stopped by my blog from time to time will have seen my white everalstings images that have gone through several transformations the last couple of years.  Everlastings have papery petals and if you pick them and dry them upside down they can last for years.


We hadn't been up to the Mid-West to see the everlastings blooming for a few years, so I was in wildflower photographers heaven.  I will let some of my images do the talking for me. I am not a botanist, so I won't guarantee my identifications are correct.

 Pink everlastings - lawrencella rosea






These white Splendid Everalstings - Rhodanthe chlorocephala subsp. splendida
were closed up. I am not sure if they weren't quite ready to open, or the dull overcast day was the problem. However, we did see some open later on. 


These yellows are Golden Myriocephalus - Myriocephalus guerinae


Large Paper Lily - Laxmannia grandiflora 


There seemed to be a yellow variety too.....or perhaps it depends on the age of them. In the RHS pic you can see the flower head before it opens -



Here is my hubbie - animals and birds are more his thing - he probably got tired of waiting for me. He certainly is a patient driver when the call comes to "stop the car"!

 
I could go on and on with more everlastings pics, but I had better stop. I will be back next week with some pics from our travels. Until then have a wonderful week and thank you for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed the floral show.

 I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you.
I am linking up to Mosaic Monday, Travel Photos Monday, Our World Tuesday, Wednesday Around the World, Travel Photo Thursday, What's It Wednesday, and Oh the Places I've Been. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best! Perhaps you would like to link up too!

Mosaic Monday
Travel Photo Mondays
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World  at Communal Global
What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday
 Oh The Places I've Been


Sunday, 29 June 2014

Winter soup warmers in my winter garden

It is winter here in Western Australia. I went around my garden this morning and snapped some pics to show you. It is actually looking very green at the moment... 

In my front garden the last few roses are blooming, the hydrangeas are shooting, the lavender is pushing up a few flower heads, some winter bulbs are coming up, and the gorgeous Strelitzia (Bird of Paradise) growing by my neighbour's front driveway is really spectacular. The yellow flower you see in the top row is Hibbertia - a Western Australian native. 



In the back garden, the grape vine has dropped most of its leaves and my lemon and orange trees are offering up their bountiful crops, but my herbs are not looking that great. Amazingly my tropical theme green patio garden is looking really good despite the cold weather we have had. We have managed to resurrect some elk horns, and my old maiden-hair fern in a pot is looking wonderful.



It has been very cold here today, so we put a pot of Pea and Ham soup on the stove. 
It is so easy - just a cup of dry split peas, a ham hock, and whatever vegetables you like - onion, carrot, pumpkin, celery, turnip, parsnip. Just chop the vegetables up roughly, add boiling water, and cook till soft. When cooked, take out the ham hock and chop off the meat into small pieces. Mash the vegies in the saucepan with a potato masher. Return the meat to the pan and reheat. Eat and enjoy! You can have it thick, like in this pic below, or water down if you like a thinner soup. Don't forget some crusty bread.
 


I love home made soup. There is nothing like it. Do you make soup? What are your favourites? Here are some of mine....  Pea and Ham, pumpkin, minestrone, Mulligatawny, and an old family staple - lamb shank, vegetable and barley soup. 


Minestrone with tomato and herb scones. I make the tomato soup base during summer when we have tomatoes in the garden, and freeze it in containers for making minestrone in the winter. 


Did you know that Mulligatawny soup dates from the days of the British Raj and was introduced to Britain by colonists returning from India in the 18th and 19th centuries? The names comes from a Tamil word, milagutannir, which means "pepper water". Ingredients include curry powder, ginger, cinnamon and turmeric. Delicious and certainly a winter warmer!



And those lemons? How about some lemon meringue pie? It is my favourite and my eldest son's favourite, and I think my son's eldest son's favourite too! In fact I think it is our family favourite! We always want a second piece when I make it.


So there you have it, a little look at winter in my corner of Western Australia. Thanks for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. Have a wonderful week.

Lamb  shank, vegetable and barley soup
I am linking up to Mosaic Monday, Travel Photos Monday, Our World Tuesday, Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global, Travel Photo Thursday, What's It Wednesday, and Oh the Places I've Been. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Travel Photo Mondays
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World  at Communal Global
What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday
 Oh The Places I've Been

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Lyndendale in the winter

Today I am sharing some images from around the grounds of beautiful Lyndendale Gallery along Crooked Brook Road near Dardanup where I have been running a basics photography workshop. Last Saturday was mostly theory, and yesterday afternoon was practical - taking pics around the garden.

Lyndendale is such a wonderful creative, peaceful and supportive environment. Thank you Denise for the opportunity to run my photography workshops at Lyndendale.


How about a sit on the porch?



 I wonder what Miss Muffin kitty cat is looking at through the window?


I love these rustic metal emus on the fence.......Oops! Denise has just told me they are blue wrens! Sorry Denise! and sorry blue wrens for calling you emus! .... well they looked like they had long legs.....oops!



ducks on the dam


By the time I left this afternoon the light was such a beautiful golden and casting wonderful shadows. I took this pic at the front of a property just down the road.


 If you live in the South West corner of Western Australia or are travelling through this way you must go and visit Lyndendale Gallery and see the beautiful artworks on display and for sale from around the South West. Open 11am-5pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday. 
Here is a link to their facebook page  - Lyndendale Gallery -
 and their workshops page - Lyndendale Gallery workshops


Two of the participants in the first workshop came to us through Art Partners - mentorships in the arts for people of all abilities. You can read more about Art Partners and what they gained from the photography workshop by clicking here - Art Partners Bunbury


Thanks for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. Have a wonderful week.

I am linking up to Mosaic Monday, Travel Photos Monday, Our World Tuesday, Wednesday Around the World, Travel Photo Thursday, What's It Wednesday, and Oh the Places I've Been. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Travel Photo Mondays
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World  
What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday
 Oh The Places I've Been

Monday, 9 June 2014

Making Anzac biscuits & my week in pictures

Last Anzac Day, 25 April, I realised that I hadn't made Anzac biscuits for years.  I mentioned it on my blog post on Anzac Day - you can see it here - 25 April-Anzac Day-We will remember them

So a couple of weekends ago when my grandson came for a sleep over I decided to make Anzacs with him. He loves cooking.


Anzacs are a traditional Australian family favourite biscuit. Everyone has their own ideas as to whether they should be crunchy or soft. I remember great trays of crunchy Anzacs coming out of the oven of my Aunt's wood stove. They waft out a delicious smell through the kitchen.

Here is my Aunt's recipe - she called them "John Bulls" - maybe from the brand of oats she used. 
Mix together 1 cup rolled oats, 1 cup dessicated coconut, 1 cup plain flour, 1/2 cup sugar.  
Melt 125gm butter or margarine. Stir in 2 heaped tablespoons of Golden Syrup. Dissolve  1 1/2 teaspoons bi-carb soda in 2-3 tablespoons boiling water. Mix into the butter mixture. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix in well. 
Place flattened balls of mixture onto you baking tray. Baking paper works well. Leave room for spreading. Cook for about 15-20 minutes at about 180C.
Cool on a wire rack. 


According to the Australian War Memorial website it is unknown how Anzac biscuits got their name or how they came to be a traditional biscuit to make on Anzac Day. 

From the 1920s onwards Australian recipe books nearly always included Anzac biscuits but exactly how this recipe became identified with Anzac, or the First World War, is unknown.  The sweet Anzac biscuits are far different to hardtack biscuits which were the standard ration of soldiers and sailors.
Anzac biscuits don't have the shelf-life of hardtack biscuits but they do last a reasonable amount of time, so it is possible that they became known as a suitable inclusion in parcels of small luxuries and comforts that families and charitable organisations used to send overseas to soldiers.

You can read more about Anzac and hardtack biscuits by clicking here - Anzac biscuits 

I think I should have left my Anzacs in the oven a bit longer, as they were a bit soft, but they were delicious anyway!  Do you make Anzac biscuits. Do you have a memory of them from your childhood? 


A few more pics from this past week......
It may be winter, but my grape vine is still wearing it's beautiful autumn colours 


 I drove home via the beach on Thursday to take photos of this beautiful sunset


On Friday I went for a walk along the beach at Koombana Bay in my lunch hour. The shags were drying their wings on the jetty, and didn't particularly like my intrusion....


On Saturday I ran a beginner's photography course at beautiful Lyndendale Gallery near Dardanup. One of the "composition" elements discussed was "leading" and "converging lines". So I snapped this pic on the way home as an illustration. I love this long line of trees.


On Sunday we went up to the bush - I of course had my camera and I spent some time playing around with Aperture priority and looking for interesting shapes, patterns and textures. Can you see the little picture of a tree that a creature has drawn on the leaf in the RH corner pic?


So there you have it - Anzac biscuits - and my week in pictures.

 Thanks for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. Have a wonderful week.

Lyndendale Gallery, Crooked Brook Rd

I am linking up to Mosaic Monday, Our World Tuesday, Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global, Travel Photo Thursday, What's It Wednesday. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World  
What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday