Today was idyllic. I spent most of the morning on the cliff at Fingal Head near the village I featured in my most recent post. It was a time of teal coloured water, blue skies, porpoises and magic waves and rocks.
I took a knapsack holding my camera, a bottle of water and a very large slice of chocolate cake. Bliss.
Fingal Headland is but five minutes drive from where I live on the North Coast of New South Wales in Australia. Lucky me!
A visit by a dozen porpoise who swam lazily past around the headland was a real highlight of my visit. These guys often frolic in the waves, but this lot was quite relaxed and content to go with the flow of the currents.
The island off the headland is named after James Cook, the British navigator who won the race to 'discover' the east coast of Australia, the Great South Land, in 1770.
It's very close indeed to the Tweed River on the border of New South Wales and Queensland and Fingal carries on the Scottish theme. It was named after these amazing rocks (below) which are very similar to Fingal's Cave in the New Hebrides in Scotland, and the Great Causeway in Northern Ireland.
The rocks are hexagonal shaped columns formed when hot lava shrank in a way similar to mud cracks when it dries, and the cracks apparently extended downwards into the mass of lava as it cooled and shrank, and the columns were later exposed due to erosion.
The lava at our Fingal came from the plug of a volcano called Mount Warning a few kilometres inland, and also named by Cook who gave the the mountain the credit for 'warning' him of the presence of a rugged coastline.
These beautiful rocks formed right around the headland and established a causeway which the locals call 'The Giant's Causeway' after the Irish formation.
The sea rushes through the causeway at this point, creating dramatic plumes of white spray - exciting against the lovely teal blue of the ocean on a sunny day.
There is a small lighthouse at the tip of the headland.
It's been on this site since 1872 as part of network of navigation aids around the Australian coastline - as the sign says.
It really adds quite a bit of drama to the beauty of this place.
Naturally, the headland is quite a favourite with people who like to fish. I once saw a huge ray rise up from the sand as I gazed into the sea below the rocks. Impressive!
I didn't see this guy catch anything.
More basalt rocks and, of course, pandanus. Our cliffs wouldn't be quite the same without them.
The teal sea looks tranquil and some people are lulled into a false sense of security.
Get too far down the cliff and a rogue wave can knock you right off the ledge. I was being the ultimate shutterbug when this lass received quite a shock. Her dry seating place was suddenly bombarded with spray and moments later she was very wet indeed.
Look carefully and you'll see someone else tempting fate here.
Me - I'd rather find a safer swimming hole ... There are plenty of them around.
When it's summer at your place, can you go for a swim?
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