Another goal of the trip was to find Cephalotus, an extremely rare endemic carnivorous plant that only occurs in Albany. It is also called the Albany pitcher plant. We knew it was in the area but didn't know where to find it. But we found out about a site from a local enthusiast who promised that they would kill George if he told anyone where it could be found. So mum's the word on exactly where we found it. :)
So off we went to explore the bogs near Albany. You know you really love someone when you're willing to explore swamps. Or just crazy! The instructions led us to the end of a deadend road and down a sandy track to a swappy area. We knew we were in the right spot when we heard the frogs but it took some seaching still to find them. But we did. George was in botanic heaven. He's grown them at home but to see them in the wild is always a joy. We took lots of photos. We also found a couple of other carnivorous plants in the area - a bladderwort with a nice purple bloom and a couple sundews which seem to be everywhere.
Next it was time for some normal sightseeing. We drove out to Torndirrup Park on Flinders Peninsula. Gorgeous beaches but windy. It is so windy the city of Albany has built a wind far. The area around the wind turbines was also a good spot for flowers. There was lots in bloom and it was quite colorful. But it was also very interesting to see the giant turbines that generate 70% of the electricity used by Albany.
We had one more spot to check out - Two Peoples Bay and Little Beach. Little Beach had repeatedly been recommended so we drove to the east of Albany and out to the Bay. Along the way we had a chance to see a group of kangaroos lounging around in a field of alfalfa. They were laying around with just their heads poking up out of the plants. But one or two would stand up and watch us as we moved along the side of the field taking pictures. They are so much like deer - cautious and a bit stupid.
We drove on through the scarlet banksia forest to Little Beach. It was almost deserted. The beach was brilliant white sand with turquoise water. We took off our shoes and waded into the cool water - definitely warmer than what we find in Washington.
The coast line reminds me a lot of Northern California around Sonoma and Mendocino. Rocky coves and green fields. But the color of the water is so beautiful here with a wide range of blue. I can just imagine what it would be like here in the summer.