June 29, 2012

0263 AUSTRALIA (Western Australia) - A wave without surfers

I know that in Australia nature created a lot of bizarre geological structures (at least for Europeans), and yet every time when I discover a new one, I don't cease to marvel. Is also the case of the rock formation called Wave Rock, a granite inselberg which lies about 3km east of the small town of Hyden and 296km east-southeast of Perth, which became an attraction only in 1967,  following an article published in the National Geographic.

There is no need a Phd to figure out why it's called so. As can be seen in the picture, seems to be a wave which awaits its surfer. For a long time it waits, because Hyden Rock, of which Wave Rock is part, has 2.63 billion year old, i.e. more than half the age of the Earth, when life was just a plan in the distant future. 

Wave Rock is 15m high and 110m long, and its rounded shape has been caused by weathering and water erosion which has undercut the base and left a rounded overhang. This happened about 60,000,000 years ago, when the animals who nurse their young with milk barely spread on the Earth. Water from the springs constantly running down the rock during wetter months dissolve minerals adding to the colouring of the wave. So the face of the rock features vertical bands of ochre, brown, yellow and grey, which change constantly during the course of the day as the light changes.

About the stamps

The first stamp (designed by Jonathan Chong) is a beautiful one dedicated to London 2012 Olympics (which will be held in London, from 27 July to 12 August), and entitled The Road to London. It features several iconic London landmarks (the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral, the giant Ferris wheel, known at the London Eye, and Big Ben in background, and the ubiquitous double-decker red buses in foreground) and pays tribute to the hard work and dedication of Australian athletes by featuring the official logo of the Australian Olympic Team.

The second stamp is part of a series which shows Cocos (Keeling) Islands, located in the Indian Ocean and comprising two tropical coral atolls. The four stamps, issued on May 22, 2012, and designed by Jennifer Scalzo, who used photos by Karen Willshaw & Ismail Macrae, have the values 60c, $1.20 (the one on the postcard), $1.80, and $3.

The stamps were cancelled on June 5, 2012, with the postmark Westminster WA 6061 (first day of issue). Thank you very much, Heather, both for the wonderful postcard, as well as for the special stamps and postmark.

Wave Rock - Wikipedia
Wave Rock - Official site
The Road to London stamp - Australia Post
Cocos (Keeling) Islands series - Australia Post
First day postmark - Australia Post

sender: Heather Massese (direct swap)
sent from Perth (Western Australia), on 05.06.2012
photo: Annette Kent

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