Everyone had been raving about Gunlom Falls and the beautiful natural “infinity pool” views so we decided to overnight on our return from Cobourg Peninsula to check them out. After a marathon day’s driving the dirt again we pulled in before sunset, set up camp and when I realised it was a short but steep climb I set off for a sunset shot. A handful of people were eating snacks at the lookout whilst another handful swam in the fading light but as I looked down the cascading pools I think I was suffering an overdose of falls and pools. It was nice but the water was only just trickling over the falls. The pools were filled with uninviting green algae. Sure the water was clear, an I even went for a quick dip, but I couldn’t help feeling that the Gibb River Road had offered so much more. If this was the first falls I had visited I’m sure I would have been impressed.
My glib “overrated” comment to the family was dismissed until the next day when we all returned for a peaceful early morning swim, whereupon I was surprised to get consensual agreement. I noted to myself that this one needed to be revisited in the wet season to give it a fair chance.
Before we left I saw a kapok tree adorned with yellow flowers and green pod-like fruit. This is a calendar that the aborigines use to tell them when the turtles are laying eggs, or eggs are hatching, depending upon whether the tree is flowering or fruiting. The seed pods are also used for dying pandanus for weaving, producing a rich yellow dye when boiled.
Driving out on the dirt road that morning a wrecked car by the side of the road reminded us of the perils of the unsealed roads, or maybe it was just a victim of one of the feral donkeys that we saw jauntily trotting along the road.