Herbig Family Tree, Springton

April 14th, 2009

Rose and I didn't stay that long at the Mengler Lookout. There was still a good part of the afternoon left so Rose suggested we go look at a tree.

Not just any tree but the Herbig Family Tree at the small country town of Springton, South Australia. I looked at the map and noticed the drive would be quite significant for my heat challenged boiler, the frog van. I said to Rose, "This better be one really impressive tree!"

The first part of the drive was the rest of the way up the fairly steep Menglar Hill. I knew this would be the most challenging for the van. Fortunately it made it and fortunately the rest of the drive was largely down hill, following the sealed back roads without too much traffic. In some spots the van's engine temperature actually went down for a bit.

Whilst I had been very skeptical of traveling so far to see a tree I must admit once I saw the Herbig Family Tree it was worth the trip. If only because the tree is so photogenic.

I can't tell you much about the tree other than the Herbig family (who were among the first pioneers to settle in the region) made the huge hollowed out tree trunk into their first home. Apparently the hollow nature of the trunk was caused by lightening strikes - though I'm not sure - that's just what I gleaned from Rose who told me a little bit of the history while I was busy taking photographs.

I do know that the tree is well over one hundred years old and used to be much taller. At some point the top part of the tree collapsed but has since grown back to the slightly bonsai-ed look you see today.

Although it is quite a drive to see the Herbig Family tree, you can make your trip even more worthwhile by traveling to Springton via the road that leads from Williamstown (perhaps after a visit to the Whispering Wall). The scenery is just superb with many hills that I swear would be just perfect for a fairy castle on the summit.

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