Monday, December 13, 2010

Palm Pilgrimage

Licuala Fan Palm (Licuala ramsayi), Australia
Many years ago, I saw a picture of Australia's remarkable round-leaved Licuala Palm, which grows in a very restricted part of the Queensland rainforest.  I was so struck by their marvelous shape, and the stunning patterns of light and shadow they create that I stuck a picture up on the wall - it sat there for a decade or more before I actually had a chance to see these trees myself.

On my recent Cassowary trip to Australia, I snuck off for a day or two at the end to make a pilgrimage to the Licuala forest near Mission Beach and wandered through one of the loveliest forests I have ever seen.

What the pictures don't tell you, however, is that this was also a beastly hot, humid, and mosquito-ridden swamp.  Oh yeah, and there are leeches.

So as delighted as I was to see these trees, I was just as happy to leave them behind... Still, I'm glad I made the effort... And when the bites stop itching, I'll be even happier!

Nikon D3  17-35 lens


  1. LOL!! I also had a run-in with a leech there in February. Never wear flipflops in the rainforest!

    Beautiful photos!

  2. Totally agree about flip-flops. They seem to be the "official shoe" of Australia, but not great in a swamp...:) Take care, Chandira. K.