Target Beach to Silica Cove

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Most of the Beecroft Peninsula is a defence force training area and naval gunnery range used during the week for live firing exercises. At the weekend the public is permitted to access the isolated beaches and headlands only along clearly defined trails to avoid unexploded ordinance. Most of the peninsulais off limits. On a recent visit, a park ranger had suggested that the headlands between Target Beach and Silica Cove provided an excellent vantage point for photography of the cliffs and bays. Although there are trails into Target Beach and Silica Cove, the headlands between can only reached by walking carefully along the cliffs, or rock platforms, and where this is difficult, through the adjacent bushland following old tracks. Some of these tracks may have been made by the original indigenous owners of the land, more recently by adventurous ocean fisherman, and by wallabies that have made paths through lomandras…

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“Even the sea cant stop me from writing something to read in my old age…”
                                                                                   – Kerouac, Big Sur

It takes forever to get anywhere. Dreaming and thinking have temporalities that hardly ever seem to be hastened. It is not as if the mind ever reaches its destination, it always is restless to move on, or be haunted by persistent themes. Walking through forests and woodlands, rustling leaves, creaking branches and bird calls keep me alert, but hardly stop these cogitations. In the shade of twisted branches along the trail I wander hoping to reach the end. Although my ears are wide open, sounds and sensations, never seem to stop or satisfy, or overcome the relentless search of consciousness to defeat the stimulations of pain. Hurt, both physical and psychological, is hard to end. Time was, but now I am getting older.

At the crest of a ridge, suddenly…

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In limbo

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Where do all the dead birds go? It may seem like a peculiarly dark question, but just around the point from the oddly named Beaky Bay there is a small cove, littered with the disintegrating remains of sea birds. It is a weird harvest. Bones sit on rocks, feathered wings rest in pools, yet nearby, gulls roost contentedly at the water’s edge. Others, more busy, dive into the sea to catch fish from these abundant waters. Offshore, soft corals lie beneath and around Bass Point, creatures are protected within a marine reserve.

Mar 2014 Toyo Fomopan100 PyrocatHDstand 5

I am reminded of the Jimmy Cliff tune, and wonder whether the birds are just sitting in limbo, songless, harvested from the sky, and are grimly scattered over the rocks awaiting an eventual tidal flow to carry their remains to sea. It seems to me that this a strangely limbo world.

Mar 2014 Toyo TMY2 B PyrocatHDstand 2

It is hard to resist being anthropomorphic…

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Saturday afternoon

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Mar 2014 Toyo TMY2 PyrocatHDstand 2 Country corner – Honi, Zim, Ahri, Melody and Spirit

It is always a treat to go for a walk with the horses. They enjoy ambling along quiet country lanes, through the bush and getting out of the paddock. New or different vistas are always refreshing, and it is always best when none of the horses is left behind.

On Croome Rd On Croome Rd

Come Saturday afternoon we are all ready to get out. Melody asked if I would like to go walking with the horses and take some large format portraits. I knew exactly where I would take the photos with late afternoon sun, trees and paddocks in the background. It probably seemed a little odd to the farmer driving past that I had set up a tripod and camera in the middle of the road.

Mar 2014 Toyo TMY2 PyrocatHDstand 3 Through the old gate

The challenge was to get focus, aperture and depth of field correct…

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Steamers Beach

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Saturday morning, first day of March, not the usual daily 5am start, slept in to 6am. Woke up after dreaming that I had been drinking coffee and it was keeping me awake. Prophetic? Pouring rain outside. Checked weather radar, and although stormy locally, looked clearer heading south. Loaded sheet film into holders, 100 & 400 ASA, sorted lenses and filters, grabbed umbrella, and packed camera pack. Melody made sandwiches and packed day pack. Breakfast, another quick coffee before hitting the road, and as the surgeon suggested, took some ibuprofen for pain relief prior to walking.

Curve Curve, cliff and waves

Driving south we headed around Mt Pleasant, through Gerringong and Gerroa towards Nowra, and the rain started to ease. Stopped for fuel, more coffee and pear bread, and then drove to Booderee National Park. When we arrived at the trailhead to Steamers Beach and St George’s Head there was only a…

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