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Willis's Walkabouts Rather Older Picture Galleries

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Kakadu Highlights No. 3, April 2003, Gallery

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This page was posted on 15 May 2003 and shows the last Kakadu trip we ran. The photos are in chronolocical order. Except for the Aboriginal guides, it is typical of all of our trips.

The two photos below show our first campsite and the Aborginal guides, Lazarus and Lloyd, who accompanied us plus our closest view of one of the more common examples of Kakadu wildlife.

The next day we walked to and through most of Koolpin Gorge. With the vehicle track still closed, we had it all to ourselves.
In Koolpin, we camped on a sandy beach next to a lovely pool. The next day we visited a number of Aboriginal art sites. Park policy, however, does not allow us to show any photos of the paintings — if you want to see them, you'll have to come and see them where they are.
As always, our next campsite was next to a perfect swimming pool. We saw our only crocodile here. -- only a small one and not much left of it. Even live, crocs like this (the only ones we ever encounter) are not a danger unless you go out of your way to privoke them.
We often get beautiful sunsets and we always find flowers. There is at least one kind of grevillea in bloom in every month. The one shown below blooms in the wet and very early dry season.
From Koolpin, we walked through a low pass and down into the Barramundi Valley where we camped next to one of the nicest pools in the park and explored a small side creek. here are two views of that creek.
From Barramundi, we climbed up to the top of the Waterfall Creek watershed where we had fantastic views over the plains below. Then, as we began our descent, we had great views back toward the headwaters of Waterfall Creek.
Every night the guide (Russell in this case) would prepare a three course meal while the rest of the group relaxed and enjoyed their surroundings. This camp was just below the area shown above. From here, we walked across a flat plateau to another rocky area above Gunlom Falls. This is one of the best areas to see the huge Kakadu termite mounds on our trips.
As is often the case, we got to some campsites by early afternoon allowing us plenty of time to relax. There were even a few bush chairs for those who chose to use them.
Freshwater crabs are seldom seen, but these posed nicely on our final morning. We then walked downstream past more interesting rock formations.
The photo at right shows our final swim stop, a lovely pool we had all to ourselves, less than 200 metres from where the day hikers all stop.

The photos above should give you a good idea of what you can expect on one of our walks, but nothing can compare with the actual experience. But don't take our word, have a look at what our clients said about this trip. The quotes below are exactly as written in our comments book.

Every one of these people has said that they are willing to talk to others about their experience.
Please ask us for contact details if you would like an unbiased opinion about our trips. We don't want to put too much pressure on any one person, so we won't give any contact out more than five times in a given year.

"Walks that made me proud of what I was able to do -- breathtaking views -- delicious meals. Thank you Russell for a fortnight of the most wonderful insight of Australian way of life. I will certainly miss when I will be back in old Germany." -- Inge Sandek, Germany

"Travelling across wide plains, climbing through baking hot gorges, bathing in the cool waters of pristine rivers and pools, meals shared acound a camp fire at night, sleeping beneath a star-filled sky, enjoying the camaraderie and fun of the group walking. A stunning journey through this 'wide bropwn land". Thanks Russell." -- Jacinta Farrelly, Melbourne

"Fantastic walk through spectacular country. Perhaps the air conditioning could have been set a bit lower! Really good campsited and cooking. Having Lazarus and Lloyd along added an extra dimension and the 'male only' art site was a beauty! Great job Russell, thank you." Leigh Rowe, Melbourne

A wonderful trip which was well organised, capably led, superbly catered for the evening meals and went through magnificent country, remote and rarely seen by the majority. To have Aboriginal interpretation was great and we did enjoy Lazarus and Lloyd with their stroies, food samples and fun." Dorothy Radford, Brisbane

Another great walk Russell, what can I say. Special thanks to Lloyd and Lazarus for their insights into their culture. This was a special part of this walk. Kill the cane toads." Colin Johnstone, Sydney (Note. Cane toads have reached much of the park and are having an impact on some of the wildlife. We saw relatively few, but we didn't see as many water monitors as we would have a year earlier.)

"There was an 'old' guy called Willis
And I really thought he'd kill us.
But instead he made me carry GEE
To make me as fit as could BE
So I could go 'walkabout' again with Willis. ....
Or I could have said, 'same old, same old' -- read the above comments. But I had a fabulous time and will be back for more -- hopefully with knees in better shape! Thanks for being patient." Jenni Metcalfe, Brisbane.
(Note. The "GEE" above was a food bag labelled "G" which was most of Jenni's share of the evening meals.)

"Thanks for an excellent walk. You took us to some amazingly beautiful places. I like the way we reached our campsite relatively early so that there was time in the late afternoon for Phil and me to explore and look for plants and birds on our own. Extra local knowledge from you and lazarus gave us a lot of extra value. Many thanks." -- Robin Garnett and Philip Collier, Melbourne

"Es ist schwer zu sagen was das schönste Erlebnis war. Ich habe die Tour genossen! Das tägliche Baden in den warmen Pools war wunderschön und hat mich im Wasser mutiger gemacht. Darüber freue ich! Es war toll, zu welch schönen Pools Du uns geführt hast und wie sicher Du immer die Richtung und den Weg gefunden und gemacht hast. Nach einem Tag mit Flusswasser was die Suppe am Abend sehr köstlich! Und natürlich das 3-Gänge Menue!! Danke dass du mir das Hemd geliehen hast!"
"That is in the guestbook. I would like to add,
"Die zwei Wochen im Kakadu NP waren ein einmaliges Erlebnis. Weg von aller Zivilisation, ohne Weg und Steg wurden wir sicher geführt. Manchen Stellen an den Flussläufen oder Flussüberquerungen waren eine echte Herausforderung - hüfthoch durchs Wasser waten oder schwierige Sprünge von Felsbrocken zum nächsten oder die Kletterei aus dem Koolpin Creek heraus. Mit dem Beistand oder manchmal auch Hilfen der Erfahrenen war es dann doch nicht so schwer. Im Nachhinein bin ich auch ein wenig stolz, diese Hürden geschafft zu haben."
"Die warmen, schweisstreibenden Temperaturen haben mir weniger ausgemacht als ich gedacht hatte, dank der Erfrischungen in den warmen Becken der Flüsse. Wunderbar, hineinzuspringen und den Schweiss abzuschütteln und auch heraus zu kommen und nicht zu frieren! - wie meistens in Deutschland. Viele Tage hatten Höhepunkte, wie z.B. am Koolpin Creek: wir hatten schon viele kleinere und größere Wasserfälle mit schönen Becken passiert und kamen an eine Stelle, an der das Flüsschen einen Weg durch den Felsen gefunden hatte. Wir wateten durchs Wasser, durch das Felsentor und kamen wie in eine Halle, wie in eine Kathedrale mit grün bewachsenen Felsen und einem sehr schönen Wasserfall. - Oder die Aboriginal Fels-Malerei, zu der uns Lazarus viel zu erzählen hatte. -Oder wie wir durch einen Tunnel geführt wurden oder die Höhlenbesichtigung am Waterfall Creek. - Oder ein Buschfeuer, von Lazarus entzündet, aus nächster Nähe zu sehen. Die Australier blieben dabei sehr gelassen, ich nicht so. - Oder die unglaubliche Weite bei Überquerungen der Felsrücken auf dem Weg von einem Flussbett zum nächsten."
"Die Wege an Flussbetten entlang hatten den enormen Vorteil, dass wir nicht so viel Wasser mit uns schleppen mussten, denn der Rucksack mit allem, was man für den Tag, die Nacht und an Essensvorräten brauchte, war auch mit einer Flasche von 1/2 Liter schwer genug. Obwohl es unbedenklich war, das Wasser zu trinken, der Geschmack war gewöhnungsbedürftig. Wenn dann zum Abendessen als erstes zur Suppe geladen wurde: köstlich! Die Verpflegung durch Russel war hervorragend. Jeden abend ein anderes Menue! Gekonnt hat er die Trockenfrüchte, Trockengemüse und Reis oder Cuscus... zu einem sehr schmackhaften und nahrhaften Essen bereitet. Und einen leckeren Nachtisch gab es auch noch!" -- Elfriede Gockeln, Germany

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