Araluen Botanic Park, Churchman Brook Dam & Sixty Foot Falls WTWW

As suggested by Arthur Hannant

I planned out an enormous run of revisits for yesterday, and no sooner than I'd posted it to my faithful Insta following than my beloved pointed out that Araluen had been suggested to me for this week. So I scrapped the carefully planned map, and headed down to Roleystone.

Araluen Botanic Park - not so much a Park as a Garden

Araluen Botanic Park - not so much a Park as a Garden

I'd arrived with the full intention of becoming a Member, as from reading up online the Park looked like somewhere I'd like to visit quite regularly, however the whole experience was soured by the unhelpful ladies on the Entrance, who wanted to charge me both for the Membership fee, and also for entry on the day, and were utterly disinterested in providing any assistance beyond handing me a (generally useless) map.

Yes, Araluen is very pretty indeed; the (readily signed as having been planted) tulips were out in force, but the whole place had something of a forced feel to it, nothing 'natural'. The plants are quite regimented, the signage is incomprehensible without a degree in botany, and in general it really wasn't a friendly place, with a frankly alarming number of 'no entry' or 'keep out' signs all over the place.

Churchman Brook Dam, Roleystone

Churchman Brook Dam, Roleystone

I headed off from here feeling very grumpy, and drove to the nearby Churchman Brook Dam, which personally I found much more rewarding, although considering it was only the 6th day of Spring, the water level was alarmingly low! I had a magpie following me pretty much everywhere I went, and sporadically a kookaburra could be heard clearly through the trees. This was a much more relaxing (and 'me') location.

Sixty Foot Falls, Ellis Valley Reserve

Sixty Foot Falls, Ellis Valley Reserve

Lastly, I drove up to Martin, and Ellis Valley Reserve, determined to finally see Sixty Foot Falls. With some effort and several blasts of my inhaler I made it to the top, but alas the Falls weren't so much Falling as Dribbling. However I did have the amusing experience of puzzling over a bagworm as it scuttled across the ground; that is one bizarre little creature!