A few weeks ago I posted about the bush fire that was raging along the Great Ocean Road. Today, on our way back from a short camping trip down the coast (more about that later), we drove through the area and got a first-hand-view at the aftermath of the fire. It was pretty intense.
The past six days we spent camping at Bimbi Park, close to Cape Otway along the Great Ocean Road. And, since we were here and the roads were open again, we decided we’d drive along to coast to get back to Melbourne instead of taking the inland route. (Also, I have to admit, because I was curious about the aftermath of the bush fire.)
So, after a short stop in Apollo Bay for some lunch supplies, we took the winding road along the ocean – along with quite a few tourists. After a short drive we arrive in the heavily affected area around the cities of Sugarloaf and Wye River. Quite a sight to see.
And while at the time of writing, the Great Ocean Road is open to all traffic again, some parts of the hinterland are still burning. The past few days have been pretty mild and comparatively wind still, helping the firefighters to control the blaze. But the weather forecast is not promising, so they are redoubling their efforts.
The most striking part of this adventure, however, was the fact that the cities and villages along the coast are swarming with tourists and surfers, as if nothing had happened. Another indication that these kinds of occurrences seem part of daily life here.
I can only hope for the locals that they can make up a bit of their losses over Christmas and New Years and get on with their lives.