Defiance

Snow Gums, Kosciuszko National Park, New South Wales, Australia

I spent this winter day snow shoeing around some of the highest snow gums along Rams Head Range, in Kosciuszko National Park. It was windy, snowing on and off, with clouds rolling over continuously. It made traversing the area challenging and difficult to spot good compositions through the fog. During clearer moments scenes like this emerged and I was able to capture snow gums in their true winter environment. Twisted and covered in ice, they seem to stand defiant against the harsh alpine conditions both they and I were facing that day. All great fun though to experience winter in the Australian Alps. 

Snow gums (Eucalyptus pauciflora) dominate subalpine woodlands mountains of the southeastern Australian mainland at the altitudinal limit to tree growth. Forests and woodlands of snow gums can look quite uniform from a distance, but up close they have such character. These examples in the Kosciuszko National Park epitomise the unique beauty in many of the older snow gums. The ones that have survived bushfires devastating large swathes of snow gum habitat in recent years are particularly special.