Leaving Wollongong we headed south to Batemans Bay an area badly affected by the bush fires, the area is a string of small villages running down the coast amid bush land. Losses here were very high and we witnessed where there were some horror home losses, some very hot fires, some totally destroying road signs, not so hot fires where there was still some canopy and less damage.
It’s interesting to see how quickly the bush starts to recover with so many trees starting to grow leaves even from the trunk. About 2 weeks before we arrived there was substantial very heavy rain on the South Coast which not only extinguished most of the fires but regenerated growth in the bush and the paddocks. We have never seen the countryside so green, a real beautiful shade of green it was amazing seeing the green against the backdrop of the burnt bush but was a sight to behold. The rain was great for the environment and the farmers alike.
We had heard locals were asking tourists to come back as they had lost the premium income period of school holidays, this we are doing and it’s obvious by the vans in the parks many others are too which is good to see.
We then visited Narooma, to visit an old Apex mate, also going to fishing village Bermagui. Next Cobargo which the media made out was wiped out by the fires, not so, yes damage and of course severe but the main street still had shops only about 40% were lost. The same could be said for Mogo where we were a few days earlier. Tilba was next for a cheese shop and to see the house used in the Australian TV version of “River Cottage”. Throughout this travelling there was more and more burnt country.
Then off to visit Anne’s brother near Bega where we stayed for 2 nights and spent time with him and his wife plus drive around the area.
So now westbound towards the painted grain silos, you might get sick of the upcoming silo art, sorry.
Mum and Dad
GM and GD
UM and AA
Anne and Marco