Monday, February 10, 2014

AUSTRALIA - SHOALHAVEN COAST - 20 to 22 january 2014


 20th January 2014 Tuesday
We packed up and headed north with a short stop at Moruya Heads. Nice views to the beaches north and the rocks below.

We reached Bendalong and got a nice campsite at Bendalong Beach Tourist Park with partial views of boat beach.

I went for two surfs on Bendalong Beach. It was fun peaky waves. I had a good time. Jacinta was baking on the beach.



21st January 2014 Wednesday

Surf not looking good this morning! We drove to Ulladulla for coffee and a wander around the harbour and the lighthouse.



Next, headed towards Morton National Park. It was a long dusty, dirt road. We stopped at a lookout and the picnic area. The view was excellent and the rocks around the area had deep crevises. The picnic was strewn with large boulders giving the appearance of lots of paths and add to this the rainforest vegetation and it was turned out to be  very special place.
We went to Granite Falls which had very little water but was still impressive!



We continued on to look at the waterfront and Kiama and Shellharbour, then we visited our friends Gordon and Meryl in Shellharbour. It was a big night of eating, drinking and catching up.

22nd January 2014 Thursday

Beacon and I went for a surf at ‘The Farm’. It was okay and we enjoyed ourselves. Then it was back on the road and home!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

AUSTRALIA - EUROBODALLA COAST - 18 to 21 january 2014


18th January 2014 Sunday

We decided to camp at Brue Lake camp in the Eurobodalla National Park. It was a petty spot next to the lake and the beach.


After a long rest, I went for a bike ride around the part of the lake. It was pretty awesome. The track was not well defined and there were all sorts of obstacles such as sand, low and fallen branches and sharp bushes. I had a swim in the lake when I finished.
distance - 4.07km
time - 23mins
av sped - 10.4km/h
max speed - 22.1km/h
elevation range - 16m



19th January 2014 Monday

I woke and had a walk down to the beach. It was a cool and cloudy day with onshore winds. There were a lot of birds along the beach and the lake. I read till Jacinta woke up.

We had breakfast and then I went for a kayak and Jacinta baked on the beach. The kayaking highlights were the birds, jellyfish all over the lake, enchanted forests of now-water bounded trees and short waterways between the shore and grasses/trees. A great paddle!
distance - 6.10 km
time - 1h 31 mins

Jacinta and I rested most of the day then had a kayak in the late afternoon through the reeds and enchanted forests.



20th January 2014 Tuesday

A light drizzle of rain so I went for an early walk along the lake and beach.
 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

AUSTRALIA - SAPPHIRE COAST - 16 to 18 january 2014


16th January 2014 Thursday


Onwards to Eden and we camped at Boydtown in a camping area next to the beach. Long and fun day!

17th January 2014 Friday

It was a cool start to the morning that quickly turned to sun and heat.

The first stop was Disaster Bay Lookout on the way to Cape Green. The road was dusty all the way and narrow at times but the view was spectacular of beautiful and inaccessible beaches.

We continued on towards Green Cape which was really nice with a lighthouse and rocks to walk amongst. We wandered around there for quite awhile.

We drove back to Eden and stopped at the harbour for coffee and lunch. We walked the pier and looked at the different types of boats moored.



We continued onwards to Merimbula and the high jetty at the end of the point. Heaps of kids were jumping from the pier to the water way below. Looking over the edge made me dizzy! I went for a snorkel there and had a great time amongst the seaweed and fish. The water was cold!



We drove for aimlessly for awhile while we sorted out a home dilemma and eventually, camped at Bermagui. Later, we had a walk around the headland.

18th January 2014 Saturday

We decided to backtrack and follow the coast road back to Tathra. The coastline was very pretty. At Michael Lerner Lookout, we had a view of the rugged coast. A track lead to a small beach.

The next short stop was Cuttagee, where we wandered around the entrance of the river to the sea. There were small waves running along the curved isthmus of sand of the river entrance. The bridge there was part old and part new.

We continued the drive and took a turn off to Bunga Head or Goalen Head. Anyway, the road stopped and we had a short walk from the entrance of Mimosa Rocks National Park to the beach. The scenery was beautiful with cows, grassed paddock hills and heaps of small dams. The beach was nice and we walked amongst the rocks at the north end.

We continued on the Tathra and drove around the town. We visited an old friend from collage Jo-Anne and her husband Gary. It was nice catching up and finding out what a lot of people from collage times were doing.



We drove back north  and had a kayak at Wapenga Creek (I think that's the name). It was a short kayak.

distance - 2.22km
time - 7mins
av speed - 3.6km/h



Next, we set up camp at Gillard’s Beach in Mimosa Rocks National Park. A great bush camp and nice beach! In the afternoon, we walked north along the beach to the rocks. On the way back there were kangaroos on the sand not far from the ocean’s edge!


18th January 2014 Sunday

I was up early and was rewarded with a blood red sunrise over the ocean. Nice! Jacinta was asleep!

We checked out a few kayak spots but decided to head to Mumbulla Falls. It was a long, dirt and rough road but it was worth the drive. The area is a traditional Aboriginal area for initiation ceremonies. The feeling of sacredness was enhanced by the appropriate artistry of the paths and facilities of the area. Even the toilet signs showed respect. The falls were a series of cascades the first and largest cascaded into a large pool. We were both were impressed!


We stopped in at Bermagui for lunch then followed the coast and checked out a few surf spots.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

AUSTRALIA - VICTORIA - CAPE CONRAN - 15 TO 16 JANUARY 2014


15th January 2014 Wednesday

 We said our goodbyes then loaded up the van and headed in the Eden direction. The weather was very hot and around Buchan it started to rain very hard. We eventually decided to stay at Cape Conran in the National park camp.

We had a swim on the beach and I played on very tiny waves with my surfboard.


16th January 2014 Thursday

I was up for the sunrise on the beach. It was very pretty with the possibility of waves with some more size.

Next, was a bike ride along Swampy Creek track, the powerline trail and the road that lead to Yeerung River.  The Swampy Creek track was the best flowing amongst the trees and bushes.

Distance - 8.37km
Time – 40 mins
Av speed – 12.6 km/h
Max speed – 26.1 km/h

Elevation range – 21m



On return Jacinta awoke and I went for a short swim on the beach. Waves were small but looking good. I had a quick breakfast and off to the waves I went. I had an hour of fun surf until the tide and wind changed.

We drove to Marlo for petrol. The girl serving there had lived there all her life though the lack of  work was a big problem. It was a pretty place we the exit of the Snowy River to the sea. From above, it was vibrant blue!

We journeyed on the West Cape and Salmon Rocks. Jacinta had a bake on the beach and I had a fun snorkel amongst the kelp.

We continued from there to Yeerung River to a small picnic area. We had lunch and launched the kayaks for a nice ride along the tannin coloured water of the river. Towards the end there were heaps of submerged logs and low log underpasses to kayak through and under. It was very pretty. At the end, I had a swim in the river. Refreshing!
Distance – 3.12 km
Time – 47mins


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

AUSTRALIA - VICTORIA - MELBOURNE - 13 to 15 january 2014


13th January 2014 Monday

We journeyed onwards to Melbourne to visit Marty and Suzy. It was a bit of a drive as the GPS stopped working for awhile. We got to our destination and it was beer, champagne, wine and schnapps time intertwined with food. A great night!

14th January 2014 Tuesday

We all rode our bikes to breakfast at a café not far away and had a delicious meal. We decided it was way too hot for the bikes so we trammed it into Melbourne. We walked heaps and looked at streets and lanes, art graffiti, art gallery, shops and cafes. There were so many of the latter! It was a cool walk though the weather was hot. We trammed it back to the bikes and air-condition safety.

In the evening, we drove to Brunswick Street for dinner at a Mexican restaurant. The food was excellent and the street very interesting


AUSTRALIA - VICTORIA - MORNINGTON PENINSULA - 10 TO 13 JANUARY 2014


10th January 2014 Friday


We ended up stopping at ??? for lunch in a nice picnic area and across the road was a pleasant and rustic coffee shop with a lot of memorabilia of yesteryear.

Finally we arrived at Mornington Peninsula but a lot of camping was booked out. We ended up at Mornington for $34 for a powered site.


11th January 2014 Saturday

We had a discussion on waking/leaving times the night before… so I woke Jacinta at 7am and we eventually left at 8am for a tour de peninsula.

We stopped at Balnarring Beach but it was onshore and windy. Not nice!

Next was Point Leo, which had a nice beach and some protected surf but was very small. A $4 parking fee was asked on entering the foreshore! A bit harsh but I suppose it goes to good use.

Next was Flinders, where we wandered along the pier and had had great views up and down the coast.

Next was Cape Schanck. We walked along the circuit boardwalk to Pebbly Beach. It was a great short walk with views along the coast north. I think there possibly is a good wave there at times.

We cut across the island to Rosebud, where we stopped for lunch on the foreshore. There was a large group of kite surfers there. We had a bit of a conversation and sat on the beach for awhile.

Next, was Rye. We parked and walked along the pier and then I swam from the beach to the pier end and back while Jacinta baked. A nice stretch of sand!

We drove through Sorrento and Portsea. We were going out to Point Nepean but a polo tournament was just about finished so we veered towards Portsea Ocean Beach for a look. The surf was blown out but looked like it had potential.

We returned back to Mornington.


12th January 2014 Sunday

First stop of the day, Point Nepean National Park. We parked at Gunners Cottage and unloaded the bikes.

We cycled from there to Observatory Point. There were great beach views east and west and the remains of a wharf.

We followed Coles Track and did a slight detour to base of Cheviot Hill. There was a great view east along the tranquil clear waters and beach and to the north was a headland with some very small waves.

Back along the Coles track and onto Defence Road. We turned off for Cheviot Beach and the memorial to PM Harold Holt. We continued cycling to Fort Pearce which was the end of the line for bicycles. We parked and walked the rest of the way – exploring Fort Pearce, Pearce Barracks and Fort Nepean. Fort Nepean was awesome to explore – old guns, tunnels, barracks, etc and all we great views all around. The view to the tip of Point Nepean was very pretty with small waves breaking on Corsair.
distance - 8.18 km
time - 59 mins
av speed - 8. km/h
max speed - 41 km/h
elevation range 35m



The next stop was Portsea Ocean Beach to check the surf which was onshore. Still there was a great view and the paraglilders were launching where we stopped. It looked like a lot of fun!

We drove a short distance to London Bridge and walked down to the beach. Jacinta baked while I explored the rock pools and the caves and rock formations to the west. On return, I had a snorkel in one of the large rock pools. Jacinta went for a walk while I relaxed. On return, I went for another swim in a semi open rock pool. The water was cool but not too cold.


13th January 2014 Monday

 We drove to Gunnamatta beach. There were rough onshore waves. We wandered further along the coast to St Andrews beach but wave wise it was still onshore.

The next stop was ??? where we walked a sandy track for a cliff view into the inlet. It was too rough with a high tide for swimming. Amazingly, there were a number of young families there so I don’t know where they would be able to safely swim. The view was very pretty though. We followed the track uphill and was rewarded we an awesome view along the west coast.

We drove over to the sheltered side of the peninsula to revisit Rye. We sat on the beach for a few hours and had a couple of ‘cool’ swims. I had two snorkels along the pier that were really good and interesting with some fish, seaweeds, molluscs and tubular growths.



We had enough sun and drove over to Sumer and visited ‘Coolart house and wetlands’.  The house was open for viewing and it was transportation back to an earlier Australian era. The wetlands were nice but not very wet. We had a rest in the shade of the gardens.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

AUSTRALIA - VICTORIA - PHILLIP ISLAND - 8 TO 10 JANUARY 2014


8th January 2014 Wednesday

We headed to Phillip Island and settled into a camp site at our Caravan Park.
 
After resting, for the early part of the afternoon, we went for a bike ride around Cowes and along the tracks at Oswin Roberts Reserve. The latter part was heaps of fun through forests with the occasional wallaby jumping out in front of us.
distance - 16.76 km
time - 1h 37mins
av speed 10.3 km/h
max speed - 5.4 km/h
elevation range - 55m



9th September 2014 Thursday

Warmest night for a long while last night!

A tour of the island today, mainly, the beaches. We set off towards Sealers Cove and Shelly Beach. The early morning light brightened the vegetation and the coastline was beaches and cliffs. At Sealers Cove a nice wave broke off the reef but that was the one and only.

We ventured onward to Kitty Miller Bay and decided a swim and a lay on the beach would be nice. We drove to Smiths Beach. I had a swim and Jacinta a bake. I then had a walk over the reef while Jacinta continued to bake.

After she was cooked enough, we drove on for a lunch spot. We pulled the van up and had a nice view of the Woolamai Beaches from Sunderland Bay.

We continued to follow the coast to the end of Woolamai Beach Road. Still no waves so back to the camping area for a shady rest.

In the afternoon , we drove to ‘The Nobbies’ admiring the views as we walked along the boardwalk. The highlights were the nesting seagulls especially, as they were soaring the winds around the cliffs and the rugged rock outcrops of the coastal scenery.

Later in the afternoon, we saw the penguin parade. They waddled ashore in small groups then made their way back to their nests through small trails to their hungry youngsters.


10th January 2014 Friday

We decided to leave Phillip Island for the Mornington Peninsula but with a stopover at Woolamai Beach. Great decision as the surf was very good. 1 to 1 ½ metre waves on right hand bank though there were breaks all along the beach.

We continued on to French Island for lunch but it wasn’t really a good spot though it was an interesting drive over the bridge.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

AUSTRALIA - VICTORIA - WILSONS PROMONTORY AREA - foster, the prom, walkerville, cape liptrap - 5 to 8 january 2014


5th January 2014 Sunday


We drove for a long time and eventually reached Foster near Wilson’s Promontory where we camped for a few nights. Along the way the weather changed to extreme winds with trees falling across the road and our bike rack broke. We placed the bikes into the van so it wasn’t a big problem.

6th January 2014 Monday

The weather was wet, cold and windy. We stayed and rested up in the camp area most of the day. We had a trip buy bike racks at Leongatha.

7th January 2014 Tuesday

The weather improved during the night and in the morning it was cloudy, cold with some sunshine. We loaded the gear and realised that the new bike racks were missing a pin which stopped it opening if you hit a hard bump on the road.

Our first stop was back to the autobarn in Leongatha where they apologised and gave us a pin.

Back on the road but a quick stop at MacDonald’s for a take away coffee and breakfast stuff. Their coffee is quite nice.

After petrol, we were back on the road again to Wilsons Promontory. We drove through till Tidal River to check out the camp grounds. It was very packed out. Still, it was a nice location we walked down to the beach and wandered around.



Next we stopped at Lilly Pilly car park for the Mount Bishop hike. It was a great hike. It started as a reasonable slope which increased about one third into the walk. The vegetation changed from dry ferns to moist fern trees. Very pretty! The top of the mountain had an awesome view across the coastline of Wilson Prom.
distance - 5.14km
time - 1 h 10 mins
av. speed - 4.4 km/h
elevation range - 275 m



Next stop was Darby River. We had lunch, and then I went for a kayak. Firstly, I paddled up river which was mainly reeds which eventually closed in making the waterway very narrow. It was a mini version of the ’Africian Queen’. On return, I checked with Jacinta who was enjoying the rest so I continued towards the beach. This section was excellent, huge seagulls, massive sand dunes and a rugged wild beach.

distance - 5.43 km
time - 1 h 7mins
av. speed - 4.8 km/h



The next stop was the Prom Wildlife Walk. It was only short but we did get to see a multitude of kangaroos and some emus. The flies were in abundance making filming a hazardous task.
distance - 2.21 km
time - 30 mins
av. speed - 4.4 km/h



We drove out of the National park and found a camp area at Shallow Inlet - $29 unpowered site. It had a great view in sections over the water and the sunset. It was just a short walk to the beach.


8th January 2014 Wednesday

A quiet night’s sleep! I was up early but Jacinta took awhile to awake.

On the road, and the first stop was Walkerville. The last section of the road was corrugated and the vibration was unbelievea…ble..a…ble..a...ble. After ‘shaken all over’ we pulled into the beach carpark. The wind was howling from the east and the surf was shining. We walked along a short track to look at the old lime kilns then walked back along the beach. The kilns are testament of how quickly the past can be obliterated. The beach was excellent with lots of jagged rock formations.

The next stop was Cape Liptrap. Once again the corrugations on the road were jarring. The lighthouse at the cape was interesting and the cape scenery was cliffs covered in vegetation and some beaches in some of the coves.



We followed the coast from Inverell to Cape Paterson. Great scenery but the strong onshore winds dampened out desire to explore. The waterway at Inverell looked ideal for windsurfing! There were some boats and kite surfers out.

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