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NORTHERN FOOTPRINT

“Everywhere is within walking distance if you have the time.”

Steven Wright

A walk on the north side of town, from the Spit Bridge to Manly, Sydney, Australia

Every walk starts with just one tiny footprint. It’s where that footprint takes you that matters.

The Spit to Manly walk.

When I started this walk I wondered who had walked this area before. I don’t mean the manufactured walking trail but the entire area between the Spit Bridge and Manly. Bush walkers perhaps, convicts, early explorers? Actually, I was thinking of the Indigenous people of this land who hunted and gathered food here for thousands of years and we know that they were here and there were many of them. I wonder what they thought as they saw the first sailing vessels coming through the heads. The surprise and wonderment at the garments and uniforms of the first officers and sailors on landing.

Seaforth, Sydney, N.S.W.
Seaforth, Sydney, N.S.W.

Some of the harbour side beaches throw the most spectacular patterns in the water and you can see just how clean and clear the water is which brings me back to thinking about the aboriginal people who lived on these shores and what a life style they must have enjoyed with plentiful fresh water, native animals, birds and an abundance of fish and crustaceons to feast on, a temperate climate with lots of sunshine, life must have been very good.

The above view was our introduction to our walk and we couldn’t have wished for better weather and couldn’t wait to see what we had in front of us.

Our next location was Clortarf where we were greeted by this natural sculpture in sandstone.

Is the above view for real? Is it some mystical bottom dwelling sea creature from the bottom of Sydney Harbour that I have accidentally photographed? or is it an illusion produced by the water passing over a rather large submerged rock? You be the judge!

This is a view across Sydney Harbour looking from Clontarf to South Head at the entrance to Sydney harbour. If you read my post on the walk from Watsons Bay to Bondi Beach, the land depicted in the above photograph is the subject of the article. I may be biased but I think it is quite spectacular. The ferry you can see in the photo, is heading to Manly from Circular Quay and it would be this ferry that you would catch to start the walk from Manly to The Spit.

As we passed through Balgowla Heights I was attracted to the beautiful native flora which goes to show you that there is more to this walk than awesome harbour views.

At the top of this photograph is North Head at the entrance to Sydney harbour. This headland used to be an army installation and out of bounds to the general public, but in recent times it has been turned into Sydney Harbour National Park and can be walked as an extension to the Spit to Manly walk.

When we reached this spot, I knew that we were nearing the end of our walk. Our destination, Manly, is a little to the right of centre in the above photo. It was an enjoyable walk, not too difficult with ample interesting coves and beaches at which to stop and admire the panoramic views of Sydney Harbour. We continued our walk to the ocean side through the pedestrian only Corso ( 5 mins,) where we had an ice cream before catching a ferry back to Circular Quay and a bus to Bondi Beach. All in all an awesome day out.

Information:

Distance: 10 km – one way

Gradient: Moderate

Walk time: 3-5 hrs. depending on fitness and how many stops you make on the way.

If you are planning on staying in Sydney and intend playing the tourist, I would suggest buying an Opal Card which will cover all public transp

Just keep walking,

Jimmy Bee,

SPACE NEEDLE

Seattle, Washington State, U.S.A.

Seattle Space needle photographed by author.

The space needle was built in the Seattle Centre for the 1962 World’s Fair. It is a significant structure and is a landmark of the Pacific North West.

Some interesting statistics: Height: 184 m; Width: 42 m; Weight: 8660 tons; Wind Resistance: 320 km/h; Earthquake Resistance: 9.0 magnitude. It has 25 lightning rods.

There is a 160 m observation deck with a revolving restaurant and yes, they do have elevators which travel at 16 km/h and reach the top in 41 seconds.

Seattle CBD photographed by th author.

A birds-eye view of the Seattle CBD taken from atop the Space Needle. The snow covered mountain in the top right corner is Mt. Rainier, which is south/southeast of Seattle. Mt. Rainier has an elevation of 4,392 m. It is volcanic, active and considered to be one of the most dangerous volcanos in the world due to it’s having a large amount of glaciel ice. An eruption could cause lahars (Massive mudflows) which could threaten 80,000 people and their homes living in the valley.

The above two photographs were also taken atop the Space Needle.

I took the above photograph of the spider on an adjacent building from the observation deck.

A lovely view of Seattle on a magnificent day. A photographer’s dream.

All of the above photographs were taken by the author.

Until next time.

Jimmy Bee,

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LAND OF THE BLUE/GREEN ICE

If there is one thing that defines Alaska apart from it’s wilderness, it is it’s magnificent glaciers.“…..JPB

To think that this awesome structure is in constant motion, and has been so for a long, long time with the leading section dying and falling into the sea forming small icebergs,

Hearing and seeing a glacier calve (a large piece of ice breaking away from the leading edge) is an experience I will never forget. There was this almighty roar and as I spun around, I witnessed this large chunk of ice slide into the water and I was lucky enough to capture the above image.

The above image depicts how the ice collects soil and rock and other debris as it slides down the mountain on it’s journey to the sea. One can just imagine that as the ice melts on contact with the water it could reveal the skeletons, tools and weapons of a bygone era. The seabed of the inside passage could make an ideal place to explore, if it hasn’t already been done.

This final image is of the leading edge of an Alaskan Glacier. It would make a fitting ingredient to an exotic cocktail at the Royal Hawaiian, in Honolulu.

I used an Apple SE phone and a Canon G Series camera, both ancient in modern terms but sufficed.

My wife and I travelled the Inside Passage between British Columbia and Alaska on the Crown Princess https://www.princess.com

Cheers,

Jimmy Bee