Today after a pretty chilled start we decided to take a break from filling our flat with stuff and instead took the bus to the mount ainslie nature reserve. It’s been gorgeously sunny and warm without bring hot today so it seemed like the perfect day for a hike. As we wandered along the trail we wove in and out of ecalyptus trees, she-oak trees and other scrubs. When we rounded a bend I was really excited to spot some kangaroo poop, so excited that I was still chattering about it when I walked around the next corner and almost WALKED INTO a kangaroo!!! It was just eating some vegetation and stopped to gaze at us imperiously, clearly not too bothered by our presence. In fact it loped closer to get a better look at us! Suddenly I realised (it was all a dream?) that there was another kangaroo, much smaller, next to it. I stood transfixed, delighted to see these animals in their natural habitat. After a while we walked on further, anxious not to disturb the wildlife more than necessary and WALKED INTO A WHOLE TROOP of kangaroos!!! 4, 5, 6, of them then more scattered across the mountainside in front of us. They all had a good look at us both and then with the roo equivalent of a shoulder shrug went back to nibbling the local flora. So my partner and i decided to join them: we got out our packed lunch and sat amongst these kangaroos eating. It was surreal. And awesome. And surreal. And awesome.
Eventually we found our way back on to the main trail and hiked up to the mountain top. This walk was clearly “the place for Canberrans to be” on a sunny Sunday. It was swarmed with families and small groups if friends, all lycra-clad. In our jeans and t-shirts we felt a little put of place. But I can see why it’s so popular. The trail was clearly marked (but you could go off piste if you wanted to), there were really really beautiful views down across the city and the lake, and a water fountain at the summit (brilliant idea).
After taking in the views from the top we strolled back down via the war memorial and back home- debating the merits of memorialising war. We walked through the main car park where everyone else apparently starts their mount ainslie hikes and I was really glad we’d gone our own way (entirely by accident) and stumbled across some local fauna!
(Pics to follow, we have limited Internet atm)