Monday, May 06, 2013
One more day in civilization and then back on the trek for our last week! I can't believe it! Has it really been 5 weeks? We today I decided to do the WOW Wilderness Ecocruise. On their home page is this quote and it just really hit home for me. Especially since I've hiked most of the John Muir Trail in my home state of California.
“The clearest way to understand the universe is through a wilderness...” John Muir 1838 -1914
I learned that cruises and tours of the Walpole/Nornalup area have been going on for 100 years! Various people have been doing it. Stockmen have been using the area for a long time to feed their horses. Robert Forest Muir, one of the stockmen, lost all his horses in the war. They were taken to be used for the troops. His son Ron was so devastated that he bought a 1918 Dodge and started picking up tourists from other towns to take them on tours of the Walpole area, spend the night in a stockman's camp and back to their city. It was so popular that in 1994 a Muir family partnership and WOW was formed.
Today the Muir family still runs it. Eight generations of Muirs have been doing tours here so the history has been passed down from generation to generation. Gary Muir was actually the Project Leader for the Valley of the Giants and Tree Top Walk as well! Gary has also won several awards for tourism. WOW also designs special tours for the aged, disabled, students and international visitors. I guess we qualify for that one.
The tour is daily and leaves at 10:00 in the morning. It lasts 2.5 hours and includes "tea" with the famous Tingle Cake. For all this it only costs $40.00. That is a steal! With all the history that one learns from the guides it is priceless. Especially since it is from people who have been in the area for eight generations!
As an organization I'm extremely impressed. They have projects that are economic, community as well as global! They really put their money and time where their mouths are! They have many diverse and interesting projects that they have done and are doing to this day. They believe in paying it forward and the stewardship of the earth. They are working to protect the indigenous plants as well as people. They work at educating the children so it will continue to be passed down to the next generation.
Over all it has been an incredible day. The sites and history learned was great. I even got 2089 steps in as well as an hour of working out. Over all a great day.
(All of the above information was taken from the WOW Wilderness Ecotours site.)