Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world. I am a photographer, writer and multi-media artist.
Focussing mainly on Western Australia and Australia, I am seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.



Monday 20 September 2010

Walking the Capes - Cape Naturaliste, Western Australia - Mosaic Monday

Yellow Tailflower

The bushfire that raged around Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse in February 2009 devastated the natural coastal heathland, so we took pleasure in experiencing the amazing regeneration that follows fire in the Australian bush when we explored the walk trails around Cape Naturaliste in early spring 2010. We could still see the burnt sticks which were grim reminders of the fire, but the thick growth that had sprung up around them was ablaze with a kaleidoscope of colourful wildflowers.  Many plants, like the Yellow Tailflower (also known as fireweed), have taken advantage of the clearing of the undergrowth.  An opportunist species, the Tailflower grows in abundance after fire, and is just one of the wildflowers that ensure walking around Cape Naturaliste is a delight in spring.

Located not far from Dunsborough, Cape Naturaliste is part of one of Western Australia’s great walks, the 135 kilometre Cape to Cape Track, which traverses windswept rugged cliff tops with spectacular coastal vistas, across sandy beaches, through diverse coastal heath and along shady woodland tracks through the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park between the Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin lighthouses in Western Australia’s far south west corner.

Some of the sections are rugged and challenging, but if you are not up to the full five to eight day trek you can still explore the track by splitting it into shorter walks of varying distances and difficulty.

A good introduction is the Cape Naturaliste trails network which gives the opportunity to enjoy the Cape’s vegetation, wildlife and panoramic views on easy 30-40 minute loop trails or half day walks. The trails are well signposted at each junction and the layout of the circular walks starting from the Naturaliste Lighthouse, make it easy to extend your walk and still be able to loop back to the Lighthouse.  There are numerous lookouts where you can enjoy the views.

Temperatures at the Cape can be blistering in summer, so I suggest either walking in the early morning or late afternoon in summer, or a spring walk when the Cape comes alive with wildflowers

Much of the trails are along sand tracks through low heathlands, so it is interesting to see the resilience of coastal Marri trees growing high on the ridges, their shapes stunted and sculptured by the wind.   The walks also give an opportunity to spot birds and animals living on the Cape, such as the Southern Heath monitor - Varanus rosenbergi. Seats provide places to rest and enjoy the fauna and coastal scenery.

One of the most popular walks is the Whale Lookout track (2.4km) leading to a lookout which provides a perfect vantage point for whale viewing during the annual migrations. Here you have the opportunity to observe seals on the rocks at the base of the cliffs, humpback whales during October to December, and occasionally Southern Right Whales during June to September.

Native Violet

I hope you have enjoyed today's post which is part of Mosaic Monday - to see Mary's beautiful work and the work of other contributors, please click here to go to Little Red House Mosaic Monday

Winged Clementis

To read this complete article, please see the December 2010 issue of Go Camping Australia magazine.

Sunday 5 September 2010

Mosaic Monday - Native Orchids

Crimson Spider Orchid
Now it is spring we go searching for native orchids in the bush. Our native orchids are quite small, not like cultivated varieties, so they are always a joy to find and photograph. Here are some of my favourites - I hope you enjoy them..

My post is part of Mosaic Monday - an initiative of Mary from Little Red House. To see her beautiful work and other contributors  please go to  Little Red House Mosaic Monday  

To see some more of my native wildflower photos please go to my Picasa web album - Life Images by Jill - Picasa web Album

Blue Lady Orchid
Donkey Orchid

Queen of Sheba
Leopard Orchid

Rattle Beaks