8/ Girding Australia

Leg 35 – North to South

Dr Leanda docked, then drove to the other end of Tasmania to a place called Carlton Beach. There, Dr Leanda met her friend Wild Wei, and Canine Indi met Canine Mana.

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Canine Mana is a very fast runner, with seemingly boundless energy, and easily out-paced Canine Indi in games of fetch.

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Canine Indi and Canine Mana were able to rest and recover in the sun together.

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Dr Leanda and Wild Wei dined at Fern Tree Tavern, where fern trees covered the Fern Tree part of the sign…

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… before taking a peak at Mt Wellington.

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Leg 36 – South to North

Dr Leanda and Canine Indi headed back to the north end of Tasmania in order to attend a bio-blitz at Don Reserve.

IMG_9389.jpgBio-blitzes are organised throughout Australia to collect and record the local lifeforms in a specific area.

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In this case, Dr Leanda assisted with recording the spiders and other critters common in leaf litter. A highlight for Dr Leanda was seeing a platypus in the wild for the first time. This particular Bio-blitz recorded 252 species in 30 hours – a very newsworthy event!

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Dr Leanda is very grateful to Dr Clare Hawkins, the local council representatives, other volunteers, and attendees for such an excellent experience.

Leg 37 – North

Dr Leanda and Canine Indi had a brilliant view from where Bowser was parked at Leven Canyon.

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Walking through the forest was a good place to reflect.

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Canine Indi *loved* it, racing up the many, many stairs without hesitation.

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Dr Leanda had to hesitant more often, but luckily there were some encouraging places to sit…

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… suggesting one ‘rest up’…

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… or ‘take a spell’…

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… and letting one know when ‘nearly there’.  Once there, the view was a step above the rest.

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Leg 38 – North west

Traveling along the coast, Dr Leanda and Canine Indi passed through Burnie, Wynyard and Smithton…

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… to arrive in Marrawah.

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The 100 km/hr winds at night rocked Bowser like a cradle. Canine Indi slept like a baby, Dr Leanda not so much. Heading south to Arthur River, they found the edge of the world.

And further south, it got more wild in the west.

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Leg 40 – Mid west

Heading inland, there was yet more forest.

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More tall trees.

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Yet more stunning views.

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And more walks.

Leg 41 – South west

Continued south along very rocky roads. Barged through Corinna, then Zeehan.

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Through Strahan to a different track in Queenstown.

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A jolly good ride indeed.

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Leg 41 – South

After much traveling, Dr Leanda decided they should rest in Hamilton for a few nights. The locals were very welcoming.

Then back into Hobart. Dr Leanda had some delicious bagels at Bury Me Standing.

Before returning again to Fern Tree Tavern, and walking nearby with Caver Neil.

They successfully scouted for Tasmanian cave spiders. Dr Leanda was very excited.

Leg 42 – South east

Dr Leanda needs to remark upon Remarkable Cave. “The gap in the cave as you looked through resembled the shape of Tasmania” ~ Dr Leanda.

Port Arthur was full of history.

Nubeena full of beauty.

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Dr Leanda went on a Tasman Island Cruise.

And saw the highest sea cliffs in the world.

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That stretched for kilometers.

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Some sea caves.

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And sea lions.

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After the brilliantly bumpy ride, Dr Leanda saw some more wild(ish)life at the Unzoo with an excellent guide.

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Including a delicious looking local goose….

… yummy looking wallaby …

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… and tasty looking kangaroo.

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But the real treat for Dr Leanda was seeing a Tasmanian devil.

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Two, in fact.

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Leg 43 – East

Dr Leanda and Canine Indi traveled north up the east coast.

There were some beautiful camping spots.

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They could have stayed for months…

… but Dr Leanda had a conference to attend, so traveled on they did.

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Leg 44 – North

The Ecological Society of Australia 2019 conference was held in Launceston. Dr Leanda was excited to meet up with some of her ecologist friends from around the country, and catch up on the latest ecology science.

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Dr Leanda is a very proud committee member, and got a colourful lanyard to show her pride.

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And there was much celebration of diversity at the first ever queer mixer.

The talks were inspiring, with some attendees traveling internationally (right).

Unfortunately, Canine Indi could not join in. Dr Leanda tried to make it up to her with bones, and long morning walks.

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At least Canine Indi enjoyed the camping spot that they stayed.

After the conference, Dr Leanda and Canine Indi boarded the ferry and headed back to the mainland.

 

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