A couple of years ago I read an article on Lake Hillier on Western Australia’s Middle Island (South-East off the shores of Esperance in the states South) which included a most striking photo.
You see, this lake was the most incredible pink colour (Google it some time to see what I’m talking about).
Apparently it is caused by the presence of a certain Algae, which under certain weather conditions cause, the water (saltwater lakes only, so I assume high saline levels are one of those factors) to go this most incredible colour.
It was one of those things you file away in the memory bank and think, “I’d love to see that one day”, but I hadn’t really pondered it since.
This slightly waffling tale does have a point, as back at the start of March I was flicking through the weekend papers when an article on Melbourne’s own Westgate Park caught my eye.
Tucked beneath the shadows of the Westgate Bridge it lies, a collection of lakes that form a wetlands reserve, home to many water birds and all within sight of the CBD!
After several weeks of extreme summer heat, one of these lakes water levels had dropped, concentrating its salt levels, and, you guessed it, it had turned a most vibrant shade of pink!
Now, almost 4 weeks later, Sarah and I finally found the time to go explore, and check it out for ourselves.
Whilst the colour was immediately striking, what slowly found its into the senses was the smell.
It wasn’t entirely offensive, but it was certainly there, I assume as a result of the high salt concentration.
At least all fears I had of having waited too long and missing it, were quickly allayed!
All reports have suggested that the waters are not likely to be harmful to people (indeed, there is a pink lake in Senegal where the local people harvest salt from its waters), although they do recommend not too, as its intense salt levels are not likely to be pleasant.
We did have to remind ourselves that it was simply salt, and not some form of industrial, toxic waste we were viewing!
It’s not quite Lake Hillier, but it’s a pretty impressive (and geographically, far more convenient) short term option.
That recent article read in early March suggested Autumn will see the lakes colour return to normal, so if you are about, I’d recommend you check it out as soon as you can!