Saturday, 24 September 2016

Botany Bay and Port Botany

A recent afternoon drive took us around Port Botany along Prince of Wales Drive.

Port Botany, is situated on the northern side of Botany Bay.

It was the original home base for the Kameygal (spear clan). 
They were part of the Eora language group. The Kameygal were custodians of this area for about 5000 years prior to white settlement.

Watkin Tench in his 1788 Diary noted,

'On the northwest arm of Botany Bay [the Cooks River] stands a village, which contains more than a dozen houses, and perhaps five times that number of people; being the most considerable establishment that we are acquainted within this country. The huts occupied by this clan of about sixty people live near the outlet’.

If you'd like to read more about the Eora clans that inhabited the Sydney area, the State Library's Indigenous collection produced this fabulous pamphlet in 2006 called Eora: Mapping Aboriginal Sydney 1770-1850.

On the 29th April 1770 Captain Cook landed in Botany Bay, near Kurnell (or Kundul - as the Gweagal (fire clan) called this area at the southern end of the bay).
Botany Bay - La Perouse headland on the left, Kurnell on the right & a big storm front to the east!

On the 18th January, 1788 Captain Arthur Phillip arrived in Botany Bay to establish a penal colony. After a few days he decided that there was insufficient fresh water for a settlement, so he moved the fleet north to Port Jackson (Cadigal country) on the 26th January.


On the same day, the French scientific expedition, led by Laperouse landed in Botany Bay. The two French vessels and their crew stayed for 6 weeks. 
Both the English and the French offered to help each other with supplies. 
Laperouse fortunately sent some of his journals, charts and letters back to Europe with the First Fleet ship, Alexander, as he and his crew were not heard of again after they set sail from Botany Bay on the 10th March. 
The north eastern headland of Botany Bay is now named La Perouse in his honour.


Port Botany is still a working port. 
It's Australia's second largest container port.

We enjoyed a dramatic, pre-storm sunset at Port Botany.

Seagull strutting along Banks Wall.




At the southern end of Prince of Wales Drive, is Molineux Point.
This area commemorates the Sydney Ports sister relationship with Yokkaichi Port Authority, Japan. The monument was officially opened in March 2001.

Molineux Point Lookout
This post is part of Saturday Snapshot

Saturday, 17 September 2016

Blackwattle Bay

My youngest season plays soccer over the winter months. His home ground is Wentworth Park in Glebe. The only thing that separates our home from the park is Blackwattle Bay and Anzac Bridge.


When the weather is fine, I like to walk to the game. 

It takes about 45mins if I go across the bridge and about an hour if I walk around the bay. 

Both are scenic and interesting and provide lots of photo opportunities! 

But I prefer the bay walk - less traffic and more greenery.


And plenty of different views of the Anzac Bridge!


Blackwattle Bay was a working harbour full of timber mills and ship-breaking yards. 


In 1969 the Glebe Society was formed to create access to the foreshore for local residents. It has taken them 40 years, but they now have four beautiful parks to their credit - Jubilee, Federal, Blackwattle Bay and Bicentennial parks.


They have kept a crane and some of the old machinery as memorials.




The old timber mills reclaimed mud flats and mangroves swamps to house their yards.
The mangrove swamps quickly became putrid - full of industrial waste and sewerage.

The current sea walls are far more lovely and make it much easier to enjoy the foreshore, but they (& the earlier pollution) have changed the ecosystem of the bay tremendously.

Two years ago, Sydney Uni devised a flowerpot system on the seawalls to encourage rockpool activity once again in the area. See my original post here.


The project has been so successful in re-introducing 28 species of marine life back into the bay, that they have continued the scheme around more Sydney seawalls, including those in Farm Cove and Elizabeth Bay.

Near the Blackwattle campus of Sydney Secondary College, they're also working to re-establish some saltwater mangrove trees. Eco-engineering is the new growth industry around the foreshore!



The Glebe foreshore is also trialling a new bee pollinator habitat.






This post is part of Saturday Snapshot

Saturday, 10 September 2016

Walking my suburb

This winter has not been very cold in Sydney.
I've enjoyed lots of walks across, through and around the peninsula that I call home.
Below are a few snaps that I took along the way.

Propeller Park, East Balmain

Space saving kayak storage!

View of White Bay. Sydney Harbour is still a working harbour.

Magnificent gum tree in the park near my house.

It's very therapeutic having a little bush retreat so close to home.


As winter comes to end, the wattle begins to blossom.

Bird of Paradise (Strelitizia) flowering in Mort Bay.

There are only a few spots left on the peninsula where you can walk on sand. This is my favourite little beach.

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree, merry, merry king of the bush is he....

Ferry Crossing!

Sea mist over White Bay.

Frosty after effects on my walk to work one day.

Evening lights over the city from Cameron Cove

Here comes Spring! The first magnolia!



Ferry entering Mort Bay.


This post is part of Saturday Snapshot

Saturday, 13 August 2016

The city by night

I recently had a day long conference in the middle of Sydney.
The office had a great view of the Bradfield Hwy as it approaches the Harbour Bridge (below).


I decided to walk home around the new Barangaroo work site to get to the Darling Harbour ferry.
The area around Wynyard Station is still a bit of a mess, but pedestrian overpasses are in place and every time I go by, you can see more features.


I'm not quite sure where the new Barangaroo area becomes the location we've always known as Darling Harbour. Maybe the use of these names will change as time goes by?

Wherever the cartography dividing line might be, the Imagine sign marks the end of the construction area and the beginning of the lovely waterside boardwalk around Darling Harbour.




The view from the ferry back along the boardwalk I had just walked down.

Darling Harbour was a working harbour until just after the end of WWII.
The area was full of warehouses, wharves, trains, boats and smog.

Barangaroo used to be called The Hungry Mile during the Depression years as hundreds of out of work men lined up there waiting to get work in one of the warehouses or on one of the boats.
The old pics below are from Wikipedia.

Darling Harbour 1900 looking from Pyrmont across the Pyrmont Bridge into the city.

Darling Harbour & Barangaroo 1950 from the city looking across to East Balmain and Goat Island to the right.


This post is part of Saturday Snapshot

Saturday, 6 August 2016

Bathurst Winter Festival

Recently I visited my family in Bathurst.

The area around Bathurst was originally the home of the Wiradjuri peoples. 

Bathurst is now the oldest inland settlement in Australia. Last year the city celebrated 200 years of white settlement with a big festival and street party.
It was so successful they've decided to make it an annual event to coincide with the two weeks of the winter school holidays.

Bathurst has had a number of very cold, snowy days and nights this year, but it's never usually cold enough for the snow to last for very long (it usually melts by lunchtime each day). 



So even though their new Winter Festival features lots of snow related activities, there was very little real snow in sight (although the freezing cold wind was blowing in from somewhere snowy close by!)

Bathurst has done a lovely job of celebrating the cold with markets, food and wine festivals, an ice skating rink, ferris wheel and Vivid-like lights. 
I'm sure this is a festival that will continue to grown and evolve.




Bathurst Court House looked beautiful with it's Winter Lights.







My parents enjoying the light and snow display.

Apparently there is a new ice hockey comp happening in Sydney this year.
Several of the teams travelled to Bathurst for the Winter Festival to play some exhibition games.


 The line for the Ferris wheel was too long at night, so Mum & I returned the next day.
It would have been lovely to see the town all lit up at night, but the daylight ride gave us a fabulous panorama view of the surrounding areas.





This post is part of Saturday Snapshot.