Kangaroo Course

Tuesday, September 16, 2014 Road Junkies 0 Comments

Day 14:  Apollo Bay to Melbourne

We decided to backtrack a bit this morning and headed west to check out the Cape Otway lighthouse before returning to Melbourne.  We still had not seen any kangaroos in the wild and had heard there might be some on the road leading to the lighthouse on the coast.  A sign at the beginning of the road warned about animals on the road, though, thanks to some embellishments by a rogue signmaker, most of these seemed to be imaginary (pictured above).

Most animal warning signs in Australia include a number to call for rescue of injured wildlife.  Since each number is different, we believe these are part of a network of volunteers.

The road took us through another eucalypt forest, and we spotted five koalas hanging out in the trees overhead, but still no kangaroos.  Light rain had been falling since we left the hotel, and as soon as we exited the car at Cape Otway, the skies opened up a steady downpour.  With a A$19.50 admission each and a quarter mile to hike in the rainstorm to reach the lighthouse, we decided to pass.  We did ask the attendant about kangaroos, and she informed us that 'roos are sleeping during the day but we might see some wallabies.

We saw no marsupials, but we rounded a curve to find two young cows out to see the world.  By the well-worn path they were walking along the roadside, we had the definite impression this was not their first outing.  We had to give them credit for blazing their own trail instead of strolling down the road.

Back in Apollo Bay, we saw another postal carrier out delivering mail.  Mailboxes seem to be well away from the street in Australia, especially in urban areas, so posties, as they're called here, ride motorbikes to enable them to reach the boxes, a wet way to travel on a day like today.

Postie making deliveries in Melbourne
Headed back east toward Melbourne, this time on C119, an inland route, we meandered past many acres of rolling farmland, lush with new spring grass, where herds of sheep and cattle were happily grazing.  The road also traverses through numerous rain forests with massive eucalypt trees sheltering huge ferns on the moist ground below.

Rain forest near Barramunga
A bit of research promised one last opportunity to see kangaroos in the wild before we fly out of Australia tomorrow.  So we altered our course to Melbourne and dipped back south to the coastal village of Anglesea.  We had passed through the town on the way to Apollo Bay yesterday, but that was before we heard the 'roo-mor that a mob of kangaroos were hanging out at the Anglesea Golf Course.

Golf pros at rest
Sure enough, there they were, about 40 kangaroos enjoying their daytime rest before becoming active at night.  Technically speaking, one could argue that life on a golf course isn't exactly in the wild, but they came there on their own and are not held captive, so we're checking off our list.  Having accomplished our last goal for this trip to Oz, we found some great veggie burgers at Caffe Danielle in Anglesea village before continuing back northeast to Melbourne.

Tonight we've parked ourselves at an airport hotel in anticipation of our flight to Queenstown tomorrow 

Daily Stats:
  • Started in Apollo Bay, ended in Melbourne
  • Mileage - 211        (Trip total: 11,758)
  • Weather - 48° to 57°, rain
  • Koalas in the wild - 5 
  • Cows in the wild - 2
  • Kangaroos in the wild - 43

Our cute little apartment in Apollo Bay.  The landscaping was beautiful.
Our third daffodil season this year—Georgia in March, Newfoundland in June, and Australia in September.