A couple of weeks ago the kids and I joined a couple of other families and hiked from Edith Falls to Sweetwater camp on the Edith River just North of Katherine.
This was my kids first over night hike/camp adventure and I wasn't sure how it would play out.
|Kid inspects tent|
My philosophy was let the kids have what they want, they can choose the music in the car, food etc... I will even carry most of the gear, just so long as I can get them to go.
|Kid in a hammock|
Well it paid off, not too early on Saturday morning we were rolling down the Stuart Highway headed for Nitmiluk National Park with a few stops for caffeine along the way.
Just after Adelaide River I glimpsed the figure of a person and some kind of bike leaning against a tree. I couldn't resist my curiosity and doubled back to say hello.
It was then we met with Ms Blandine. A solo Kick biker 'La Trottineus' who is traveling the world in an admirable way. If I get the time I'd like to write more later.
We met up with the others at the Edith Falls campground and spent quite a fun afternoon there, setting up tents, rolling around on the lawn and cooking dinner.
The 9-12 year olds sorted themselves out pretty quickly and were busy exploring, throwing frisbies and generally soaking up all the fresh air an negative ion magic Leliyen had to offer.
It was a comfortable night camping there on the perfectly level tent sites covered soft green grass.
|Checking the map|
Next day we headed out on the trail at about 8:30am
It was a bit of up hill to begin with but everyone was in high spirit and the younger kids were keen to prove their prowess as explorers.
The track to Sweetwater is only about 4.5 km long but we made it last, stopping at water holes along the way and taking a dip. It took us about three hours to reach our destination. When we arrived we discovered that there was very little room for our tents and another group had already taken the best sites.
Despite the heat and the flies we had a really great time at sweetwater. Swimming was awesome, the kids spent most of the day in the cool fresh sweetwater of Edith River.
|Hiking the trail|
Unfortunately we didn't get much sleep that night. Rough uneven ground made things pretty uncomfortable for my team. But the views were worth it. It was a night of a New Moon so in effect there was no moonlight. We were blessed with a cloudless night and a perfect view of the starry night sky! We could see everything!
At 5am some of us got up to observe the Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower which amounted to a serious of falling stars with quite sustained tails. We also followed the path of a few satellites that were quite easy to see in the moonless sky.
It was a great trip, the kids grumbled a bit at the end but we all had a pretty good time and made it home safe and sound the following day. A successful first for us.