As many of you know, we are thinking of moving back to Australia some time. The high prices of housing in Oz and the unfavourable exchange rate inhibit such a move, but in the meantime, we look around at possible places to move to. This year we are looking at the Blue Mountains, approximately 50 miles west of Sydney.
Before proceeding to the photos, it's useful to understand this map. The first white settlers in Sydney arrived in 1788. Until 1813 the Blue Mountains formed a barrier to westward expansion. Three explorers, Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson found a route across and this route still is used to head west. The area in green on the map still remains as a dense forest with steep sandstone cliffs.
Sandstone cliffs and forest at Wentworth Falls.
There was not much sun this day. On a sunny afternoon, the sandstone really glows.
A gum tree losing its bark. It's quite normal for this kind of tree to do this. It makes me think the tree is disrobing.
Robin had a day off work and came along with us. She really likes the Blue Mountains and thinks it is a good area for us to move to.
The top portion of Wentworth Falls. Not much water because there has not been much rain.
Housing off in the distance. Bush fires can be a real problem for houses close to the trees which become highly flammable in summer. If we did buy a house in this area, I would be very concerned about the proximity of the bush.
We followed a group of Asian tourists down some steps to another lookout.
It was a bit chilly and windy. It's about 3000 feet elevation and it can snow here occasionally.
Another path descends to the bottom of the falls.
A lower part of the falls.
Even lower section of the falls. The total length is 614 feet which is a fair height. Niagara Falls is 167 feet.
The Blue Mountains has a number of grand old houses that 19th century rich people built to use as an escape from the summer heat of Sydney.
We drove to the little village of Wentworth Falls which has a few shops.
Lunch. Probably the most delicious steak and kidney I have ever had.
Marianne had a lemon ricotta potato pancakes with avocado and smoked salmon.
Robin had some kind of breakfast dish with poached eggs. The tomato had been baked. It looked delicious and Robin said it was excellent.
Maybe a possibility one day. The $355k is definitely at the very inexpensive end of the range of housing costs in this area.
Many of the old Post Offices in Oz have been sold off to be converted into shops.
The suburban Sydney train service extends out to this area. It takes a bit less than 2 hours to get to Central Station in Sydney. A Seniors Ticket costs $2.50 for the whole day so traveling by train is the cheapest and probably the fastest way to the city.