Friday, July 11:
We awoke to the sound of screaming babies in the campsite next to us so were off to a bit of a rough start. We packed up and said good bye to Berry Springs and hit the road toward Litchfield National Park to see some waterfalls and amazing termite mounds. We took the short cut which was supposed to be very 2wd friendly. It was a bit of a nightmare. I was reminded of a road we took in New Brunswick a few years back. Our little red car did well and we made it back to the bitumen without too many issues. We arrived to the park at around 11:00 and checked in to our campground. Our next stop was Wangi Falls where you can swim right up to a beautiful waterfall. It was already getting hot out so it was very nice to get in to the pools at the base of the waterfall. We had a quick swim and went for a walk around the falls and up to the top of the waterfall. On our way we were amazed at the amount of bird noises that were in the trees and looked up to see treetops full of huge bats! We continued on the hike and had a great look at the forest and small streams. After Wangi Falls it was on the road again to Tolmer Falls Lookout which was about 10 minutes down the road. Tolmer was beautiful but apparently you can not swim in it. It was getting very hot so we didn't stay long before heading to our next plunge pool which was to be Florence Falls. We stopped and had lunch before heading to the falls. It was a long hike down in which we found Maddy, a girl Layla had met at Berry Springs and was afraid would never see again coming up from her swim. We said a quick hello and headed down to jump in the water to cool off. The water was cold but in the 32 degree heat felt great. A couple from Boston was there with their girls on an around-the-world trip and we had a good visit with them about their travels. We walked all the way up to the car park and decided it was time to head in to Batchelor to get an ice cream before making it to our next stop. The next water hole was Buley Rockhole, a series of cascading waterfalls that lead to large, deep pools where you can jump in to the water. Back at the campground Layla introduced herself to our neighbors who were watching their grandchildren from Canberra, Kaia and Louise. They played cops and robbers and hide and seek and had an outdoor movie night for Layla's last night in the tropical warmth of the Northern Tip of Australia. It was a great day overall for the whole family; we really enjoyed Litchfield National Park and are sad to make our way back to Clare starting tomorrow. We are quite excited about our Camel Tour of Ayers Rock in a few days though!