The mighty Diamond Tree is about to be closed to the public
By Judy Evans
July 11, 2019 5:50am CST
I’ve written about Western Australia’s Diamond Tree before. It is one of several tall karris which have a lookout built near the top. These were used for many years to spot bushfires. Now, after more than 75 years, the tree has been closed to the public indefinitely because of safety concerns. Between 1937 and 1952, eight trees were chosen to house lookouts. However, with the introduction of spotter planes, the lookouts were no longer required. In 1995, the Diamond Tree was opened to the public and hundreds of tourists and locals have since climbed the 49 metres to the top. The tree is 250 years old and was pegged as suitable for a lookout in 1940. The cabin was added soon after. Some 130 steel pegs provide access to the cabin but now the lower 8 to 10 metres of pegs will be removed to prevent people from attempting the climb. Arborists say the tree is unsafe because a fungus has made the heartwood soft. The public will still be able to scale the Gloucester and Bicentennial trees which involve climbs of 53 or 60 metre climbs respectively. The photo shows a couch-surfer friend climbing the tree although he didn’t go to the top.
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