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I THE PORONGORÜPS
THE SLEEPING BEAUTY.
My lady sleeps, thro' centuries past, Her lofty couch has held her fast;
The beating rains her falling tears, Till sunbeams, thro' her eyelid peers. Lightning's Hash, a storm sky cleaves
* * *
Vivid garments, round her weaves
My lady sleeps, and nought can ¡ harm
\ Or stir her from her stately calm,
i * * *
\ Across the plains, her beauty calling j The early sunbeams o'er her falling
She smiles, through a blue and misty ¡ gown,
But evening shadows bring a frown.
Dear lady, we pass, our heads are
Remembering from whom all things
Through the long years, your beauty
We only know, that our dear lady
-M. A". Forrest J
The Porongorups constitute a range of hüls situated about 25 miles north of Albany. The range is now well-known and has beeome one of Western Australia's fore most, and deservedly popular, health resorts. The beauty of the hills and the glorious mountain atmosphere appeal to the holiday-seeker in a manner quite unlike that of any other portion of the State. The marvellous growth of stately Karri trees, the crystal streams flowing through thick undergrowth, masses of maiden-hair fern and over minia ;ure waterfalls make the district a veritable Paradise as a holiday and
There are many glorious moun tain climbs in the neighborhood, among them being Twin Peaks, The Devil's Slide, Nancy's Peak, Castle Rock, The Elephant Rock, Gibraltar Rock, etc., from the top of any of which magnificent "views can be ob tained of tiie surrounding country. In one direction, Albany is seen nestling between the granite hills on the foreshore of Princess Royal Har bour and, stretching away east and west, the Southern Ocean can bt traced from Wilson's Inlet to th« far end of Cheyne's Beach, when Ire to be seen fits Warriup Hills; :
truly wonderful panorama. To th« north, the Stirling Ranges rise oui of the intervening plain, cutting th« skyline for a distance of nearly om hundred miles, and the heights o Bluff Knoll, Toolbrunup and other stand up in their majestic splendoi
Nancy's Peak, the highest poin on the Porongurup Range (2,14! feet above sea-level) is one of th most beautiful climbs. For tb would-be mountaineer, it is hope' that the following brief direction will be helpful: Leaving the mai road, a bush-track leads to "Haj ward Park" (two miles distant) From here a footpath winds up th lovely Bolganup Valley, on the hil] sides of which grow the majestí Karri trees, the earth beneath bt ing covered with bracken fern, man coloured flowers and, in the seasoi an abundance of the lovely hove; When near the top of the Valley,
turn should be taken to the left am after a little steep climbing,
grassy "saddle" is reached. Fro: here a view to the south is obtainei with the blue ocean shining in tl distance. Pushing on along tl ridge, we come to the highest poin from which the view is uninte rupted in every direction as far < can be. discerned with the naked ey The feeling that one gets here
that of being on the top of tl world, as we watch the cloud sh dows chasing each other over ti vast expanses of plain country b low. With the invigorating mou tain air, the fatigue of climbing soon forgotten and one feels a d sire to proceed indefinitely, but *¡ remember that there is a good di ner or lunch awaiting us at t Hostel. Continuing along the rid around massive boulders and o\ rocky slopes the "Bushrange Camp" is seen. Proceeding, we fi ourselves again on fertile s< amongst big trees, and away do ttie slope we come to the "Tree the Rock," near Hayward Pai This is a freak of nature, a lai Karri tree having grown up throu a crevice in a large flat-topped ro< ?wihich, as it increases in girth, slowly but surely, causing the rc to burst So remarkable did t tree appear to the Rev. Alex Cr that; in his delightful book : children, "Gum Leaves," he based story |of "The Overcomers" on 1 incidence of this singular growth
The various heights of the Pon gorups are so different in charac from- each other as to make ea well worth a visit. By going f ther up the Valley and turning the right, "The Devil's Slide" bili reach. This is so varied in char ter and yet so beautiful as to cai one to exclaim at almost every st From the top of this hill, corree known as "Wall's Summit," we along to "Gibraltar Rock," wt bold landmark can be seen for m; miles .around. From here, desee ing to a lower level and along i particular ridge, we come again the slopes of Hayward Park.
Perhaps the most remarkable
is that which is known as "Ca¡ Rock"; well along towards the e¡ ern end of the range. Here I view the "Balancing Rock."
precariously does it seem balan that one is apprehensive lest should topple over while being ! amined. Climbing over some roi we find a narrow passage betw two high boulders and emerg from this over some more rocks arrive at "Castle Rock," a si drop of 100 feet, cut as if by n with a sharp angle on its furl edge. From the rocky platforir $vhich we have come, a ladder al 15ft. in height, enables us to rc the top of the Rock, from which obtain a delightful view, and ! a feeling of exhilaration that feel it is good to be there and worth all the trouble of ascendir
The above is a very brief desi tion of the charms possessed by Porongorups, which make the tri ct an ideal health resort. T are many delightful motor t notably to the Stirling Ranges,
largest in Vv estera Australia. For the energetic climber, admirable ascents can be had up "Bluff Knoll" (3,640 feet above sea level) and "Toolbrunup" (3,341 feet above sea level).
Not the least amongst the attrac tions which draw the thousands of tourists, who annually visit the Porongorups, is the hospitality which is extended to the guests at the 'Hostels. An abundance of fresh food, milk, cream and fruit is pro vided, and many conveniences, such as electric light, telephone, shower baths, a swimming pool, tennis courts and recreation rooms are available. Other attractions are good shooting and horse-riding. The roads to the Porongorups are good and afford delightful drives. The name "Porongorups"-a native word-means "a happy place," where water is found. We have this in terpretation on good authority, al though we cannot vouch for its ac curacy; but we do know that with :he aboriginals the district was very popular and was much used by them as a meeting centre for the perform
ance of their tribal customs, so it is j
found that the aboriginals, long be- ; fore the white man invaded their territory» had found the Poron gorups an interesting place to visit.