Friday, April 21, 2017

The Great Ocean Road Part 2


The oldest surviving Lighthouse on the Australian mainland is on Cape Otway.  Initially built around 1850, it was constructed using a mortar free interlocking stone method.  40 stoneworkers took over a year to precision cut and quarry the  sandstone.  Which was then carted 6km up to the site. There was no road to the Otway lightstation, and all manpower and supplies had to land miles away, and be carried in.
 
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You can see the precision joints in the stone here.
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It is a bit of a climb up.
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Here is the rotating lamp assembly.  You can see the huge Fresnel lenses which allow this light to be seen over 30 nautical miles at sea. Ships would use this light to guide them on the treacherous approach (threading the needle) between Cape Otway and Flinders island to the south. 
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As always the views are awesome.
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Cape Otway was also home to a WWII radar installation (remains of similar installations and batteries are scattered across the Victoria Coast).

Here is the radar antenna mast and pivot assembly.
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This is the  remains of a German sea mine laid in the Bass Straight (by a captured Norwegian freighter no less).
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The next stretch of coastline is home to a variety of interesting geological formations.  Many with interesting names.  For example the 12 Apostles (there are only 7! used to be named Sow and Piglets), Gog and Magog, Loch Ard Gorge, Bay of Islands, etc.  The 12 Apostles especially had a large tourist crowd, it’s all about marketing I guess?

Ah, the tourist hordes at the 12 Apostles.  Something we did not miss!
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Here is a few photos of some of the formations. 
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Once connected by natural bridge, this formation (London Bridge) was not an island.  In 1990 it collapsed into the sea leaving 2 tourists trapped on Australia’s newest island. 
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