World ARC participants tour Litchfield National Park
by World Cruising Club on 2 Sep 2014
The tour to the Litchfield National Park ran on August 30th with 52 World ARC participants. Litchfield National Park is located in Australia's Northern Territory, about 100 km south-west of Darwin.
A view of the falls from overhead at Litchfield National Park World Cruising Club © http://www.worldcruising.com
The rushing waters and rugged vistas that made life difficult for the early miners, loggers, and graziers now provide a focus for the park and a highlight for visitors. Participants had the opportunity to walk along set trails around stunning waterfalls or take a refreshing swim in the water holes.
After the coffee stop during the morning the tour headed to the site of the magnetic termite mounds only a few kilometres after the Park entrance. The mounds themselves are interesting to look at due to their unusual shape but reading the displays and how the compass termites manage to align their mounds so accurately is even more fascinating. They align the mounds in a North South orientation so as to reduce the mound’s exposure to the sun. The tallest of these mounds was over five metres in height.
The next stop was Wangi Falls which is the number one attraction in the Litchfield National Park. The waterfall and pool is stunning however swimming here was not possible due to the presence of fresh water crocodiles! There is a one kilometre walk which takes you up to the top of the falls and back down again via mango forests full of hanging bats.
The last stop was Florence Falls. To get to the plunge pool participants either descended over 160 steps or went through the Shady Creek Walk. It's a lovely short walk, first through open woodland then descending into dense monsoon forest and following the creek all the way to the pool. Once at the pool there are waterfalls, small pools, rock slides and ledges from which to jump. It’s an area of outstanding beauty and many of the participants took the opportunity to go for a refreshing dip.
It’s a long day out but participants returned pleased to have visited the park. Now it’s time to rest and get the yachts ready for the start of Leg 9 on Tuesday 2nd September.