On Tuesday I took my new-to-Canberra housemate Zak up in to the Brindabellas to experience the real Canberra bush. Ostensibly I was going to check on the flowering of the Critically Endangered Brindabella midge orchid, but it was mostly an excuse to get outdoors and enjoy the fleetingly cool weather. It was the first day below 30° C in several weeks and I was keen to be walking.
After seeing the midge orchids, we headed down to the valley north of Bendora Dam and walked up through bush to a place where I had found a possible bearded midge orchid several years ago. Alas, it wasn't flowering this year. Reassessing, we decided to continue up the ridge we were on, hiking up through thick scrub until the ridge plateaued out at about 1200m elevation.
This was the view that greated us as we emerged from the scrub.
In the background is The Pimple and behind it, obscured by the cloud, is Tidbinbilla Mountain at 1615m. The slopes in this area are steep, with big sections covered in broken rock from rock slides.
While admiring and photographing the wonderful panoramic views, I found myself continually drawn to the shapes and lines and tones of the intersecting ridges. It always strikes me as incredibly beautiful when the haze in the atmosphere reduces the visibility to the far mountains, seemingly creating layers upon layers of mountains. Here, trees also lose their definition from the foreground as they become smaller, eventually adding just some texture to the ridge.
On our hike back, we came across a steep slope covered in gum trees with smooth white bark. The white bark allows me to underexpose the photo and concentrate on the shapes of the trees. Each tree has such an individual and unique form.
What a beautiful place to go hiking! I think I will do more hiking in the Brindabellas this year...