Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Launceston to Mole Creek

Mining history, natural history, rural scenes on the agenda today as we ride from Launceston along the Tamar Valley to Beaconsfield, Beauty Point, La Trobe, Sheffield to Mole Creek.

First stop is at the  Mine and Heritage museum in Beaconsfield.
The most poignant and heart-grabbing exhibit is the mine rescue of Brant Webb and Todd Russell in 2006. The exhibit conveys the hope, the  ingenuity and the courage of their rescue.

The men were trapped 925m (3034feet) deep in the mine.

As an symbol of the close knit community a group decided to knit a scarf 925m long after the rescue. Knitters from around the world contributed. The scarf is over 2km long.

Next stop a chance to see platypus at Beauty Point.

A poem from my childhood.
Banjo Patterson 

Far from the trouble and toil of town,
Where the reed beds sweep and shiver,
Look at a fragment of velvet brown -
Old Man Platypus drifting down,
Drifting along the river.

And he plays and dives in the river bends
In a style that is most elusive;
With few relations and fewer friends,
For Old Man Platypus descends
From a family most exclusive.

He shares his burrow beneath the bank
With his wife and his son and daughter
At the roots of the reeds and the grasses rank;
And the bubbles show where our hero sank
To its entrance under water.

Safe in their burrow below the falls
They live in a world of wonder,
Where no one visits and no one calls,
They sleep like little brown billiard balls
With their beaks tucked neatly under.

And he talks in a deep unfriendly growl
As he goes on his journey lonely;
For he's no relation to fish nor fowl,
Nor to bird nor beast, nor to horned owl;
In fact, he's the one and only!

Spiny, furry  Echidnas were having a feed nearby.   Their quickfire tongues are long  and efficient for slurping up minced ants and other fresh delicacies
Feeding echidnas

More fantastical scenes at the Reliquaire store in La Trobe.
Teddy bears, Tardis, antique restoration supplies, cookbooks, puppets, Alice in Wonderland, Jewellery,  masks, Roman garden sculptures, science models ... even a motorcycle  pizza slicer where the front wheel is the blade.
An amazing range of stock in this store.
You can visit Reliquaire  and go shopping, too.

I felt overwhelmed - just like these characters.
Off through the North west countryside  toward Cradle Mountain.

and Mole Creek ...

where the sun is setting at our home for tonight.

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