Welcome to NSW and to Bega! It started to rain a few days before I hit NSW and my drive into Bega which is in the south of the state was a wet one. Over the first three days in the state it has rained fairly constantly, Bega has received almost 300mm in three days. According to the news it’s the worst low pressure system to hit the east coast of Australia in perhaps 70 years and it was interesting to be here in the middle of it.
Here is the same spot 2 days after the floods.
That lake on the left will shrink down to a very small puddle, this is how it was when I arrived anyway. I had a few other “after” photos once the flood waters had receded but most of them weren’t great because of the glare from the sun at the time.
These first few pictures are taken at the show grounds where I was camped, either standing inside it or on the road beside the fence.
The quick and easy car and dog wash was flooded, and a bit further down in the distance on the other side of this bit of flood there’s a house just on it’s limits.
This house belongs to the showgrounds caretaker, he’s standing on the verandah that’s almost under water. Luckily for him the water stopped rising about a inch short of flooding through his whole house. Some of these pictures aren’t great because it was raining at the time.
Can you spot the ‘give way’ sign near the centre of the photo? I met Sue a few camps back and she arrived here the day after I arrived. Normally in bad weather she would suffer sitting inside her small camper for days unable to get out and about because of the weather but she scored well at the showgrounds parking up in the cattle pavilion.
Although she was able to get in and out of her camper during the worst rain, there was a lingering smell of reconstituting cow manure as puddles spread through the area.
Is it a freaky looking ball?
No, a mushroom. A house beside a flooded area had many of these clourful beauties sprouting up.
I then went for a drive around the town to check out some other sites, there were many areas of town with blocked off roads and quite a few houses and businesses flooded.
This poor dog doesn’t have a backyard any more. The amount of water is quite incredible this flooding stretches way off into the distance through roads, car parks, and sports fields, the actual bega river is probably about one kilometre away.
It seemed that no matter where you went there were closed off areas and flooded houses and businesses. Sue and I were going to go to the Bega club for some lunch, she was also going to show me how the whole ‘pokies’ thing works, of course the club was under water along with so many other shops and businesses around town. But while having a pub lunch, the lady there suggested we visit Merimbula and Pambula down on the coast to see more signs of the rough weather.
Although the enormous swells which had been around over the past few days weren’t as noticeable, the results of high levels of flood water washing into the ocean and the rough oceans were impossible to miss. Some sections of beach and dunes were absolutely smothered with foam.
The froth varied quite a bit depending on each beach you visit, some it was incredibly thick, although this picture shows the froth spraying up into the air, the actual water level is way down the beach, it’s just foam pushing foam.
Of course the fun of the foam wasn’t lost on the local kids, we arrived at the beaches just as schools were shutting for the day and many of them were heading to the beach.
Beware the giant whipped cream wave.
It may swallow you up completely.
It was a pretty good day seeing the flooded areas and then the creamy ocean, and while arriving back at the showgrounds there was a beautiful rainbow, a lovely double, complete rainbow, which was so big I couldn’t get the whole thing in the one shot.
Followed shortly after by a rather nice sunset.
Although I may have had a nice day driving around, there are many suffering with all this destruction. People have died, people are lost, whole herds of animals have perished and many people and businesses have lost everything. It was a crazy big low pressure weather system which was very slow moving and now it’s down over Tasmania and causing floods the likes of which haven’t been seen in 90 years.
Forgot about the shells. I went to a beach in the pouring rain and collected some shell grit, walking about a kilometre along the beach I got drenched as squall after squall kept rolling through. Still managed an interesting collection, almost exclusively two different shells, with a majority of the “mulberry twist” shell.