David traverses treetops 25m high above Otway National Park in Victoria.
Otway Fly is a 600-metre long and 25-metre high elevated tree-top walk allowing visitors to admire the magnificent old growth of the Otway Ranges, which were formed 150-million years ago as Gondwana began to break up. Part of the coastline is rich in fossils, including those of a dinosaur which roamed the area 105-million years ago. Aboriginal communities hunted there with fire, spears and dingoes.
Early European settlers fell victim to many shipwrecks, so Cape Otway lighthouse was constructed in 1848. The settlers cleared much land, but extensive forests of towering gums and shady ferns remain.
Otway Fly is adjacent to Triplet Falls. It gently ascends through a cool temperate rainforest of myrtle beech, blackwood and mountain ash, suitable to all ages and levels of mobility.
The steel walkway reaches 47 metres above the forest floor via a spiral stairway, the highest in the world, taking you to eucalypts which took 60 years to reach their height.
One of the best things about the Fly is the negligible amount of impact it has on the forest. It was built on existing logging corridors to ensure minimal impact on delicate flora and fauna. It can barely be seen amongst the foliage.
The walkway was designed and built to withstand winds of 280km/h and stands firm while surrounding trees sway around you. The cantilever is 24 metres of suspended steel. As one example of its strength, it could support 30 fully-grown elephants.
The Fly is perfect to visit any time of year. In summer it offers a cool escape from the heat and in winter you can see the mists which enhance the forest's beauty.
The rich vegetation is complemented by wonderful fauna. There are pygmy possums, swamp wallabies, yellow-bellied gliders, spotted quoll, yellow-tailed black cockatoo and crimson rosella. It is also home to the distinctive and carnivorous Otway black snail, which anaesthetises other snails before feasting on them.
Human visitors can enjoy meals and snacks at the visitor centre, which is where the Fly experience begins.