This is about the changes caused by fire
In summer, day trippers come for the scenic views and fresh mountain air - over 30 kms of walks, hikes and mountain bike riding. I did the hike up to the Lake Mountain summit (1433 metres above sea level) and was rewarded with magnificant views of the Victorian Alps. The summit loop walk is 2.4 km, and the Alps Lookout is 300 metres from the summit.
I'd been camping at the Black Spur near Narbethong, just outside of Marysville, (the car you see here is mine), and as it was raining I made the mistake of wearing gumboots. I don't recommend wearing gumboots hiking up a mountain - all that slipping and sliding! Nearly did my ankles in! But I made it. Coming back down - I slipped and slid on my rear end - not a very comfortable method of descending I must say.☺
And the wildflowers - absolutely beautiful. Alpine Mint Bush Prostanthera cuneata was everywhere. And the smell of Eucalyptus was gorgeous as you hear the sound of birds as they twittered and trilled and called.
But all this was to change.
Fire is, and can be, our friend. Fire helps us keep warm during winter - snuggling up in front of an open fire, warming your toes. Fire can cook our food for dinner, and fire can also boil the water for cups of tea and coffee.
But when fire rages through the bush and ravages everything in its wake, it is no longer our friend - it becomes a destroyer. Instead of falling snow, it rained fire on 7th February, 2009. The temperature was 46.4º C (115.52º F) with winds up to 150 kmph.
The photo to the left is a close up of where the shelter block was. There were lovely cottages, green if I remember correctly - all gone. The only building left is the Lake Mountain Information Centre/ Bistro/Cafe you see in the top right-hand photo. The only place you can walk is around the concreted parking area, or to the right and slightly behind the Cafe.
The photo on the right-hand side is that which is in the upper photo to the right of the Bistro/Cafe.
Ninety-five per cent of Lake Mountain was burnt at high fire intensity. It was said the tempereature of these bushfires was between 1400 - 1600 degrees. Mountain Ash and Alpine Ash are killed by fire - they have no fire defence other than the seed, so they must regenerate from the ground up.
Quote for today: And where two raging fires meet together, they do consume the thing that feeds their fury. - William Shakespeare
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