My mountains backyard

by jesson

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Skink

(viewed 706 times)
This fellow was catching a bit of sun before the rain came. He's about 10cm
long and runs really fast. When you're that small and you have to run the
gauntlet of human feet, you'd better move fast.
2nd Dec 2006, 23:49   comments (0)

You know it's hot when...

(viewed 795 times)
even the trees want to get their gear off.
29th Nov 2006, 11:22   comments (23)

Flannel flowers- rare minitures

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Whilst out checking on the fire situation this morning, I couldn't believe
my eyes when I saw these by the dirt roadside going out to Faulconbridge
Lookout. These are as big as the nail on my little finger (about 1cm
across). Flannel flowers are native to this part of the mountains but are
usually much bigger at about 5-10cm across. They are soft and fuzzy with no
perfume. Beautiful!

Edit: The exciting thing about seeing these is that they are so environmentally sensitive- like frogs- that they disappear if even the slightest thing is not right in their environemnt. I used to have them at my place- less than half km from this location, and now don't have them any more 'cause they didn't like the topsoil I brought in. Very sad to lose something so special!
23rd Nov 2006, 02:20   comments (17)

Faulconbridge looking east towards Katoomba

I might live in the mountains but finding a place with a clear vantage to
see what's going on is really difficult.
23rd Nov 2006, 02:16   comments (12)

Fire map

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From the Rural Fire Service this morning. Not sure of the map scale but its
about 20mins drive from Blackheath to Faulconbridge.Its 36C and 12% humidity with 20-30km/hr winds. Have just been up on the
roof cleaning the gutters and now having a little rest before I expire from
heat exhaustion. Next job is to plug the guttering and fill with water. Then
I'll be as ready as is humanly possible. The sky is now a dark grey and the
smell of smoke is strong. My neighbours are coming home now and I can hear
more of the blower vacs and see people on their roof cleaning up. Nice to
know I'm not all on my lonesome.Thanks everyone who kept me company on the mblog last night. What a great
community you make. :-)
22nd Nov 2006, 02:38   comments (28)

The next 24 hrs

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It's 7pm and still 32C with 16% humidity. When I left work it was 39C and
the poor birds were standing on the ground in the shade panting with their
beaks open. That's hot!There won't be a lot of sleep for anyone tonight. There's a major wind due through about 3am of about 80km/hr. That potentially means the fire will make a run down the Grose Valley straight for Winmallee and the villages in between during the night. That will include where I live. Spot fires are a big danger. The water bombing helicopters can't work at night so we're on our own til sunup.There's about 400 volunteers working from the ground and more to come.
Tomorrow is forcaste to be just as bad weather-wise as today and the
following days will only be a little better.One of the most overwhelming sights for me yesterday was seeing two
volunteers waiting by the side of the road to be picked up to be taken up to
the main firegrounds. They had two big duffle bags and seemed ready to stay
for a while. Just a bit further up the road, a minibus full of voluteers
from Kiama (1/2 day travel from down south) were on their way too. The rural
fire voluteers are an incredibly brave and generous bunch of people.
Fighting fires can be a big adrenaline rush but the risks are huge too. They
have my absolute respect.
So tomorrow's jobsare to clean the roof and gutters (again!), get the hoses set up, get all of my old photos scanned into the computer (oh why didn't I remember to do that sooner????) and wait. The waiting is the hardest part of all this. I just hope this is THE event for the summer, but I doubt it. There's still 3 months left before it cools off.
21st Nov 2006, 09:01   comments (19)

Bushfire light

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This was taken at 5pm today. The sun shouldn't go down until about 7.30pm.
The bushfires that are further up the mountains are giving us that
interesting bushfire light. There's going to be a lot more of this over the
next few weeks.
19th Nov 2006, 06:20   comments (5)

Kookaburra

(viewed 884 times)
Remind you of the old song.... Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree? This fella is just 3m from my back deck, happily sitting in his tree. The music and lyrics are at: http://www.niehs.nih.gov/kids/lyrics/kookaburra.htm (the music is a bit too fast but you get the idea)
18th Nov 2006, 01:12   comments (7)