It’s been some 18 months since I last dropped into Whimberly, the homestead region held by Staubi Reilig (Engelsstaub), so given the fact the last time I visited it was in the autumn of 2020 and we’re now in springtime, I thought I should hop back and have a wander once more.
Once again, the region sits within a ring of mountains and offers a mix of gentle lowlands and rugged low hills. To the north-east the lowlands hold a broad meadow, rich in yellow alirium, ringed by a dirt track. It sits as the widest point of the island, the rest of the landscape curled around a finger of water that reached inward to its centre.
Waterfalls tumble from some of the higher ground to the east into what may have once been a pool of water all on is own, but which has broken out to the south and north to meet waters that may have once been a deep inlet to the west, to leave the centre of the region as a slender ribbon of land reached by a pair of humpbacked bridges.
South and west, the landscape forms the more rugged parts of the setting, a path climbing away from the landing point and the field to run over the top of the waterfalls to pass a hilltop cabin before dipping down to a roll through a bowl of land to either reach a watery terrace below the cabin, or offer a route on south around the region, both paths watched over by deer.
Take the path on around the southern side of the land, and it will eventually bring you to another cabin sitting at the end of a tree-lined walk. But before getting to it, there is the option to take a right run and cross the waters via one of the dainty bridges and reach the middle island. Here people can enjoy tea on a deck extended out over the water or cuddle in the neighbouring rowing boat, or pass on a little further to where a more formal picnic can be enjoyed, together with time on the swings behind the blanket – just don’t upset the rabbits!
A second bridge allows people to cross back to the north-east finger of hills that border the field and landing point, offering a coastal walk to where the region’s “land office” is tucked away, complete with coffee on offer outside and a path back to the field and the landing point.
The cabin to the south-west is perhaps the most substantial building in the setting, being a mix of stone and wood. One of Cory Edo’s distinctive designs, it looks out to the west and a shingle-and-rock beach that has a small bay of its own as the land runs northward once more between open waters and those flowing outwards from the middle of the region.
Both of the main cabins are cosily furnished for those looking for a temporary retreat and sit-down / cuddle, each with its own outdoor spaces – the watery terrace notes earlier and, for the southern cabin, a little coastal area below the house, complete with a pair of chairs for enjoying the view.
Those who continue north along the peninsula extending away from the southern cabin will find another place to sit out on a little boat moored next to a rickety pier and beyond it, through a cut between two rugged hills, a little hut set out for fishing (which a little chipmunk appears to be enjoying!) and a chance for some hearty stew or some eggs whilst appreciating the view back over the water to the slender middle island.
As ever, Whimberly is again rich in details awaiting discovery, with lots of opportunities for photography, all rounded-out by a super soundscape. It thus retains its reputation as once of SL’s ever-popular public regions in which to spend time.
- Whimberly (rated: Moderate)