Day 1 – Monday 28-Jul-2014

So here we are again laying in a sleeping bag on the ground half a dozen kilometers into the Jamison Valley.

Sunset has come and gone, and darkness has paved the way for all the nasty, venomous, crawling shit to scurry about unseen. I’d turn my head-torch back on, but that would simply mean having to *see* them skitter around a foot away from me.

I’m actually a bit sleepy having woken-up at 7:30am at the backpackers in town, sorting-out some last minute shopping and other things around town then finally heading-out at approximately 12:30pm. Staying in town longer only makes me lazier each day I’ve found, so it was a slow start until I got moving this morning.

My plans for this trip are to search for mushrooms – both Psilocybe and Culinary, try to identify more trees so I can know which timber I’m carving, and explore some areas I have been meaning to have a look at. At the same time, I’ve made a point of limiting this Outing to seven nights, because the last few times – all ten-nighters – I’ve found I’m always running out of something in the last two days. First I’ll be low on sugar, then cereal, then pasta then butane, and taking a second bag of sugar, or a second gas canister, just for two more days is a lot more bulk than it’s generally worth so this time I’ve brought the same amount of food etc, but reduced my stay.

Winter must be coming to an end, incidentally, because not only are the nights becoming less icy, the number of bugs out on the prowl each night seems to have increased over the past few weeks.

Last time, I saw what I swear looked like a male funnel-web spider walk right past me as well as crimson coloured centipedes of about half a foot in length, a bunch of ants including bright orange bull-ants a full inch long, and these funny looking insects that can only be described as giant fleas. I’m sure they’re not fleas but they look just like them. They look harmless enough, but the centipedes and spiders, I’m not so sure about.

On the subject of ants actually – while I’m thinking of them – the ants I’ve seen at night always seem very relaxed and peaceful together. There are at least four different types of ants I see walking around on the ground right by my sleeping-bag each night, and all of them – even the big, red, inch-long bull-ants – seem to move around very slowly. I have no idea what it is they’re doing, but they’re not running back and forth in a line like they usually do during the day. They stay in a very small area, and simply seem to potter-around in that spot endlessly neither gathering food or “talking” to other ants of their own kind. Many times I’ve seen a reddish coloured Ant walking within a few centimeters if a blue-headed ant, and neither if them attack one another or get agitated by the others presence.

They almost look as though they’ve just woken-up and haven’t got over their sleepiness, the way they fumble around.

Anyway, it’s 8:00pm, and I’m starting to fall asleep laying here, so might have to stop writing and let it happen. The stars are out, and the weather forecast says there’ll be no real rain all week, though it’s supposed to remain overcast on and off the whole time.

Day 1 – Monday 28-Jul-2014
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Jason
Animal-loving cleaner with a parrot.