Bad weather followed us to Grampians National Park. We’ve been coordinating days with the weather, hours with the sun, paths with the rain, so we could get the most out of our visit. See the most and walk the most. We’ve finally woken up to a wonderful day and we had to take advantage of that. Including the sunset. Of course, I had to climb the highest peak in the park.
It was worth it, not just for the views above the foggy, mystical peaks, but for the wild nature that allowed us to be seen. We were the only ones there. There was no one around for miles. It wasn’t a tourist spot, naturally, as you have to climb a steep hill to the top. You can’t drive there. I don’t have any prejudice, but if a spot isn’t accessible by car, it has fewer visitors.
Solitude. Quiet. Warm wind. The last sun rays. Perfect time for dinner. We were just underneath the peak. Along the winding road, we watched the dry bushes that had overgrown the hill. Rocks. Thorns. Two adventurers that were being pulled upwards. Between the bushes. Why should we walk along the road? Every now and then, something rustled. Usually, a wallaby sprang up: a marsupial, which resembles a kangaroo. That informative turn brought us to a waiting snake.
Judging by the size of the lizard it had treated itself to for dinner, this brown snake was a teenager.
The big one. Long. Thick. It didn’t slither away when it noticed us. We interrupted her during her meal. I suspect it had waited long before luring a large lizard into its jaw. It didn’t let itself to be bothered. Illuminated by the sun, it calmly posed while swallowing the poor prey. I felt sorry for it; it hung so limply from the snake’s jaw. The snake waited calmly for it to go still before swallowing.
“Of course, I had to climb the highest peak.”
“Solitude. Quiet. Warm wind. The last sun rays.”
A brown snake. Venomous. One of the most venomous snakes in the world. The one that’s responsible for more than half of snake bites in Australia. Causing death in more than 60% of cases. If not properly treated, it can kill a human in less than 30 minutes. It’s adaptable, so it can successfully spread across the country, its numbers are growing by the year. It’s not surprising we’ve managed to see it in a more secluded town. Her favorite meal was supposed to be rodents. Judging by the size of the lizard it had treated itself to for dinner, this brown snake was a teenager. On her path to adulthood. The grownups are more content with larger animals, marsupials such as kangaroos or wallabies.
“In more than 60% of cases it causes death.”
I haven’t encountered a single venomous animal in eleven months. In Australia, where anything can kill you, so to speak. That’s what everyone kept saying when I announced that I was going to the land down under. Nothing dangerous, nothing venomous had crossed my path. Except for that little black snake (link) on my second day in Cairns. Even though I’m spending most of my time outdoors, venomous snakes and other reptiles managed to successfully hide from me. I guess I’m catching up in the last months. More than seeing venomous snakes during their dinner, I want to see a koala. In the wild, not the one in the zoo. The real one, free, endangered and slow – koala.