…Dingo was his name-o!
Due to cyclone updates we are slightly out of sync. Here is what we wrote before it got really wet…
Wednesday 18th February – Hervey Bay & Fraser Island
Yesterday morning we woke early again for a trip over to Fraser Island. This was quite an ask following the long and late drive the night before. The weather wasn’t tempting us out either as it was wet and windy. It really didn’t seem the ideal day to be going to visit Fraser Island, the worlds largest sand island and a UNESCO world heritage sight….
Here are a few of the things we saw:
- Rain forest. Second of the trip after seeing this on the Great Ocean Road too. This one was unique thought as it is a rain forest grown on sand. Some lovely creeks snaked through and our guide Steve (not a cat) was extremely knowledgeable about the trees and plants that it contained.
- Sand tracks. Serious 4WD territory on the island. Good job we didn’t try and take our little red hyundai over. It wouldn’t have made it off the ferry. The bus we were on was quite a machine and handled the terrain with ease.
- 75 mile beach. Wow. That is a long beach isn’t it. It is also a public highway which Steve (guide, not the cat) seemed to enjoy zooming along.
- Dingo! Hence the post name. The dingo came out to say hi. We also saw a sea snake that Steve (guide, still not a cat) brushed (as in, with a broom) off the beach/road back into the sea. I kept a safe distance and let Vicki take the photos. I am not a snake fan.
- Mckenzie lake. We got there just in time for our only rainstorm of the day. Fortunately we were already in swim gear so frantically stuffed our other clothes into the dry bag and dived in. Very refreshing and warmer in that out due to the rain storm. We had a lovely 50mins swimming around and admiring the wonderful setting of the lake. This is one of the main draws for a lot of the visitors to Fraser Island and it finished the day well. The rain shower was very short (about a minute) and it warmed up nicely for when we had to get out.
Another special treat for the day was a scenic flight over Fraser Island. We did this when offered on a whim as we thought it would be a good way to see the extent of the island. We were glad we did the flight which although short gave a new vantage onto the island that we would have missed otherwise. The length of the beach, inland lakes nestled in the rain forest and sand dunes sweeping over the forest could only really be appreciated from above.
Overall the trip was well worth doing. Although as a day trip we saw just a snapshot of the island and had to cram a lot in it was worth it. It would have been good to be more independent as waiting for others on a trip and sitting around with strangers at lunch is a bit of a drag however for a day, getting our own 4WD or private tour just wasn’t practical. In weather terms we were actually quite lucky. Although it wasn’t gloriously sunny it was clear and the rain held off. Apparently we were just in time too. A day later and the cyclone would have ruined our trip. More on that later.
Our evening involved a whistlestop tour of Hervey Bay where we were staying including seeing many fruit bats, shopping in Woolworths (a supermarket over here) then takeaway pizza. We then had a very early night (in bed at 8:30pm) as we were exhausted from the last few days.
Thursday 19th February – Travel to Noosa
So it seems we are in Queensland at the same time as Cyclone Marcia. Bad planning that. She is due to make land tomorrow in Hervey Bay so we headed off pronto. There was no escaping her preceding storm though so today has been wet. Rain all day. Actually, it did stop for a few minutes at lunch. So rain nearly all day. The rain after lunch more than made up for the slight break though as it has been torrential!
What to do in the rain then? Well we planned to head to Noosa to go to the beach so we carried on with that plan. It was about 2.5 hours drive over all with two stops planned on the way. These were in pretty much the only significant towns on route. Australia does contain a whole lot of nothing!
First stop was Maryborough a heritage town. Lots of interesting buildings. Good to see ye olde Australia. Also many Queenslander style houses. These are raised up to avoid floods (possibly needed in the next few days) and verandas to keep cool on in the heat (probably not this week). We also saw a kangaroo on the way out of town…another Australia site ticked off. Second town was Gympie. In Maryborough we saw a bakehouse and decided pies were in order for lunch. While Gympie doesn’t offer much more than a funny name we did find great pies.
On to Noosa for the afternoon. Staying in the Noosa Sun Motel which is perfect for us even if false advertising as there is no sun here. Nice big room with kitchenette. We chilled out for a bit with a bit of TV and then braved the rain again. In Noosa we wanted to sea the National Park. Rain wasn’t going to stop this so on went running kit and we headed out for 4 miles along the coast.
The forest and rocky coast combined with beaches were well worth seeing even if being battered by the storm rather than bathed in sunshine (Sunshine Coast by name only today). We were far from alone in the rain. There were hundreds of surfers. They were running along with us to get to the best launch spots and would then dive in and tackle the violent surf. It was great to watch but we had no intention to partake. Although very wet it is still warm so we were happy to stand watching. We even had a swim in the pool when we got back to the motel since we were wet anyway!
Not sure what is in store for tomorrow. Australia zoo may not be a good idea so we may head straight to Brisbane. Will have to see what Marcia has planned for tomorrow!