Thursday, December 14, 2006

VH in Melb Day 5 - Great Ocean Road

“Great Ocean Drive was really cool…. Rose did not feel too well along the winding costal roads but I was having a ball of a time down shifting and powering up along the twisting corners…. Hmmm maybe that’s why she was feeling a little quizzy”

We left early because it was almost 300 km to our destination ‘the 12 Apostles’ which is at the end of Great Ocean Drive. Along the way we stopped at an aboriginal centre and bought some souvenirs and looked at some Aboriginal art. We later stopped a few times along the way but the most notable stop was somewhere after Geelong. The mist was tick; the air was crisp and of cos windy. Some huge trees had even grown into the shape of the wind ( I am not kidding)…that’s how windy the place was. And the waves where crashing over the beach…. Strangely the water was warm, …tempting us to get in… but we decided not to because we weren’t even halfway to the Apostles.

We stopped at a lighthouse called Split Point Lighthouse (I think) as usual the view was breathtaking. The waves were pounding on the coastal cliffs …beautiful… The interesting thing was, there were wild cockatoos hanging around there (for those who don’t know… it is like white parrots …ok) … they where fat buggers … we also saw the infamous kookaburra bird perched on a telephone wire.

We had lunch at a little coastal town called Lorne. I think the main town was less then a kilometer square. We walked the stretch of this nice little cozy town and contemplated on visiting a waterfall a few kilometers north of the town. Again we decided against it and went on our way.

After driving about 50 km from Lorne, (somewhere near Apollo Bay), after passing countless number of ‘coastal scenes with spectacular’ cliffs, I found myself getting bored. (its never a good thing when you have too much of a good thing). Just then the road swerved away from the coast and we suddenly found ourselves driving through a thick forest which according to the map was the State Forest. After that it was one farmland after another, more forest and more farmland after that. And then there was more forest. I was beginning to get tired but the winding roads kept me sharp. It was only about 100 km later did we get on to the coastal roads again…

We finally were getting closer to the 12 apostles and Dono pointed out that we should stop at a place called Gibson Steps which lead us down to a stretch of beach, where we cld walk to the 1st Apostle. I guess I should explain that the 12 apostles are these rock formations sticking out of the coast, which was created by millions of years of bombardment from waves. We spent some time here at Gibson Steps before going to the main viewing point towards the 12 Apostles. It was magnificent… maybe I was a little tired because after a while, it just looked like giant rocks to me. Magnificent looking giant rock!

To get back to the city we used the A1 freeway ofcos. It was more then 100km shorter then Great Ocean Road and most of it was straight along Farmland. It started looking like it was going to rain and the wind was starting to pick up. Believe me the winds were really really strong but I was able to keep a constant 120 to 130 km in crosswinds. There where times where I had to drop my speed to about 90km because it was getting harder to hold on to the steering wheel… it was about that time I saw a big rig truck struggling to keep in his lane…. The rain was picking up but as soon as it slowed down I pick up speed again. The rain wasn’t as heavy as it is in M’sia but the winds were harsh… brutal even. The sun was beginning to set and it was spectacular. The colours were just out of this world. I just had to brave the strong winds to get out of the car and take a picture of it. And believe me when I tell you that me and my camera did not do justice to the sunset. It was a long and tiring day and we had covered about 520 km when we reached Shanti’s apartment in Melbourne. By then it was 9.30pm and yesterday’s leftovers were consumed over some nice wine.

to be continued

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