The foothills of the mountains were planted with Pinus radiata, which were totally destroyed, and hopefully will not be allowed to regrow.
There is a mythology in Australia, that it always rains after a big bushfire. I am here to tell you that it is not true.
After a fire, native trees recover according to their own methods of survival, which have developed according to patterns of evolution, over geological periods of time. Generally Eucalypts experience a total burrning of their oil-filled leaves, during a fire, but new growth occurs from dormant buds under the thick, protective bark of the tree. Generally! The tallest of the wet mountain Eucalypts, the "Mountain Ash", have lost this genetic survival strategy. They tend to die in fires. That is possibly because when a fire takes hold in their territory, of tall timber, and dense forest, the intensity of the fire is such that even the sap-wood of these huge trees is dried out and killed. Anyway, Mountain Ash generally rely on seedling regrowth after the fires.
The news is better for most other Eucalypt trees. They experience a sudden burst of new growth, and the forest quickly greens up again. Normally! This is where the presence of rain is important after a fire. Since the 2003 fires, the entire alpine region has continued in drought, so the burst of regrowth which followed the fires, dried out, and many trees died entirely. Those trees which did survive, have struggled on, severely damaged. And they are still waiting for rain.
The thing is how bare they are now. These rocks are clearly visible from Canberra, some 40 Km away. The main reason is how bald they now are. There were forest trees all around them, and the rocks were moss-covered. Now the trees are barely alive, and the rock faces are bare. So, from Canberra, these rocks stand out as a pyramid shaped mountain, in front of the much larger Tidbinbilla Range in the background.
These rocks bear tribute to the need for rain in South-east Australia.
Today 62 % of NSW is declared in drought condition. And this very week, the Federal Government, (and I am ashamed to say - the NSW Government is supporting this idea) is proposing to sell the Snowy Mountains Hydro-Electric Scheme to private interests. God help this country run by Free Market Idealogues. One day we will remember that there is such a thing as an over-riding National Interest.