Well you can see why large numbers of people head down here to Litchfield National Park from Darwin… Beautiful waterholes without ‘handbag snatchers’ (as crocs are referred to in our caravan park information).
This time we chose our caravan park because it had a good website. There were quite a few to choose from and without any thing else to go on… It turned out well, the park has lovely shaded sites, which helps our slightly overworked fridge to actually operate as it should. And one night Grandma Jumbo took us all out to dinner… Our first Barramundi. Whilst dining in the open sided shed we noticed a vintage sign… ‘Drink coffee. Do stupid things faster with more energy’. It’s become a bit of a motto for Greg now.
Waterholes in Litchfield while as beautiful as others we’ve visited are certainly more crowded. The impressive Wangi Falls were closed for swimming, we’re not 100% sure why but we think it was something to with a nearby colony of flying foxes. This meant our visit to Buley Rockholes and Florence Falls were probably more crowded than usual, but still nice.
Still, more people, more loonies. And while loonies tend to be a bit loony, they sure are entertaining, so more power to the loonies I say. At Buley the resident looney looked to be a middle aged gentleman, slightly overweight, but with an uncanny ability to scale tall paperbark trees and fortunately for us the lack of sense to climb back down. Instead he would leap from a good 10-12 metres into a rock pool no more than 2.5 metres wide. Fortunately for him, it must have been a fair bit deeper than that. We suspect he may also have dined in the restaurant with the aforementioned coffee sign, but must have taken the message a little too much to heart.
At one point Mum heard him say the leap was starting to make his back hurt. Still that wasn’t going to stand in his way once his audience of teenage girls from the Melbourne Girls Grammar School arrived. He just kept on climbing and leaping. I bet he was bruised and lonely that night.
The Cascades was a 1.3km walk in which knocked off 90% off crowd numbers.. Much more peaceful. So peaceful in fact I saw fit to have a bit of a lie down in a small waterfall. When in Litchfield do as the tourists do.
Litchfield has a viewing area for the magnetic termite mounds. These mounds come with a certified six star energy efficiency rating – the grass eating termites build them above the ground on floodplains and align them perfectly to keep the temperature stable throughout the day & night. This happens to coincide with the magnetic N/S. Now you might think this is quite clever, but the thing I’m trying to work out is why does a bug with a need to keep its body temperature at a precise 30 degrees live in a climate where the temperature soars above 40 and plummets below 10 (I wanted to say zero, but Emma says I shouldn’t exaggerate – she has a point)? Still hats off for picking a seemingly inappropriate block of land but learning to cope. Emma, who has done far more reading on the matter says my perspective may be misguided. Once again, she may have a point.
We learnt the mounds we’ve been seeing throughout NT have mostly been Cathedral termite mounds, a different type of grass eating termite – not one that aligns to anything. Not sure how these guys stay cool, or maybe they just don’t need to? There was a third type, coptoterms – they build their homes against trees using the wood as food source… We wondered if they were the same one that eat houses?
We told Oliver we were heading back to Darwin tomorrow and at first he wasn’t impressed. We told him we would be returning to the caravan park with the jumping pillow. Still not impressed. The one with the pool with the waterfall. Still not impressed. We’d be going to the Mindel Beach Markets. Yessss he said with true excitement!