Tuesday, one week ago, I was rock hopping down a narrow river. Sub-tropical rainforest pressed in either side. The water was fast flowing and crystal clear. Huge Blue Gum emergents towered above the steep sides to the valley. There was red cedar, giant stinging trees and lush green moss and lichen.
For both adventures, I was in the same national park. As the crow flies, just 22km apart. As ecosystems go, it felt like a millennia of difference - the ancient Gondwana rainforest species so vastly different to the more recent dry-living xerophytes. Both of them exploiting the topography of the high plateau of the Barrington Tops: the wet, shaded, rain-soaked southern slopes and the exposed, dry western fall of the mountains.