FRASER ISLAND: COCONUTS + CRABS

 

We have been a little quite over the last couple of weeks enjoying ourselves too much. We arrived in Queensland and made our way up towards Noosa catching a car ferry to the north shore of noosa where we stayed on the beach. After a week or two on the road it was nice to setup for a week and finally do some washing and create our own seaside shanty town. Visitors at breakfast were frequent including the local steroid pumped kangaroo.We walked the expansive beach, dan with the usual fishing rod in hand and were surprised to watch sea eagles picking up the remains of hundreds of washed up mutton birds.

Our seaside laundry day

Our seaside laundry day

muscle bound kangaroo

muscle bound kangaroo

walking the beach we came across some locals riding their horses

walking the beach we came across some locals riding their horses

We continued our journey to Fraser Island the world’s biggest sand island and let our tyres down for some sand driving.  We caught the morning ferry over  from inskip point at low tide to take the advantage of driving on the hard sand along the beach for about 80km north to Waddy Point.

The MAKO truck on the ferry on route to Fraser

The MAKO truck on the ferry on route to Fraser

North Waddy is a delightful camping area in a shady nook under Casurinas and Paperbarks.  We made friends with our smiling neighbour Henry who made our stay very special. I liked him as soon as I noticed he had a hammock set up.  We shared many dinners, delicious mud crabs we caughty, wines and laughs together.

Henry our camping neighbour

Henry our camping neighbour

Crabs for dinner

Crabs for dinner

During our stay we made friends with Tony and Jan who Henry had helped as they had car problems and were waiting for the local mechanic to source a spare part for them.  Tony was great on the guitar and serenaded us in the evening under the stary sky with Johny Cash songs and Jan was an amazing cook serving up pumpkin,bacon and cheese damper & banana bread for breakfast which we had with chai tea.

Jan's baked goods YUM!

Jan’s baked goods YUM!

We were fully fueled after Jan’s delicious camp oven creations and we followed Henry for some coconut hunting/wrangling.  The coconuts were plentiful although far up amongst the fronds of the tall palm trees.  We came with a system of using a very large fishing sinker on the end of a rope and then throwing it up to try and lasso the bunches of coconuts and then try and shake them down.  After taking turns of lassoing we were successful in getting the rope around the biggest coconut bunch and shaking the rope ‘thud, thud’ COCONUTS and screams of excitement yahooing and laughter!!!

Coconut wrangling

Coconut wrangling

fresh coconut juice

fresh coconut juice

Our coconut wrangling success!

Our coconut wrangling success!

Henry, who is Fijian, showed us his coconut processing skills – very impressive! He removed the husk to reveal the nut, then punctured 3 holes at the top of the coconut (coconut eyes) to drain the juice. Then expertly used the back of the machete to crack the coconut in half and reveal beautifully thick coconut flesh inside. At dusk while the tentative dingos scampered around our campsite Tony serenaded again us while we ate the fresh coconut flesh and sipped on our Bacardi/Brandy and coconut juice cocktails- heaven on earth!

Henry processing the coconuts

Henry processing the coconuts

Beautiful coconut flesh!

Beautiful coconut flesh!

scampering dingo

scampering dingo at dusk

We explored many amazing areas on the Island.  Our trip to Eli Creek which is spring fed was a highlight.  We snorkled through the crisp crystal clear waters and floated down with the strong current.  The creek was lined with lush pandanus and beautiful jungle perch swam along the underside of the creek bank, florescent yellow eel lay in wait sticking their heads our of their homes. We also found many pairs of sunglasses which tourists had lost along the way and to top it off dan found a gold ring- treasure! After Eli Creek we explored Indian Head an amazing vantage point to spot turtles and huge sharks from the top of the headland. A short drive north towards base camp at Waddy point are the Champagne Pools. These huge rock pools are an amazing swimming spot without the fear of the huge sharks that can be seen from nearby Indian head.

After days camping on the beach when you feel like a salted snack that lives in a sandpit the only thing to do is head to some of Fraser’s Freshwater lakes. Lake Mckenzie is the most well known but our favourite was lake Wobby. A large sand dune is slowly filling the lake and it may be gone within a decade so if you need an excuse to go now you have one.

snorkling in beautiful Eli Creek

snorkling in beautiful Eli Creek

Crystal clear water

Crystal clear water

Jungle Perch

Jungle Perch

Eel popping out to say hello

Eel popping out to say hello

shark + turtle viewing at Indian Head

shark + turtle viewing at Indian Head

view of champagne rock pools

view of champagne rock pools

champagne pools

champagne pools

Lake Wobby

Lake Wobby

After a week we had seen most of the island except for the rugged northern tip, Sandy Cape, which is only reached by tackling the rugged Ngkala Rocks track. Fortuitously Henry had a few friends coming and we all drove north – our first 4wd convoy! In the end the MAKO truck had no dramas at all getting through the super soft and steep track but it was great to be in convoy incase. Camping on the northern tip was the first truly remote camping of the trip. We had our own beachside spot and while the tide was middle – high nobody could get there…nude beach time :-). We watched huge green turtles in a couple of feet of water as they prepared to nest. Dan nearly had a heart attack watching large Spanish Mackerel patrol the crystal clear sand flats. Unfortunately he couldn’t seem to get things right on the fishing front and proceeded to take out his frustrations on an innocent bucket – RIP little bucket.

Sandy Cape was the highlight but only lives etched in our memories because our camera card decided to malfunction. From here we head to Hervey Bay to visit some of the wonderful folks from our 4wd convoy and enjoy a de-salinating hot shower.  

7 responses to “FRASER ISLAND: COCONUTS + CRABS

  1. Hi Emily and Dan,
    Enjoyed your photographic journey and comments. That was a great picture of the Dingo, Jungle Perch and Ell.
    Looks like your having a magic time.
    Much love,
    Dadda

  2. Lake wobbly was my fav too! I remember little fish nibbling my toes there 🙂
    And the steroid Kanga is incredible!!! I haven’t seen guns that big on a roo ever!
    xo
    Amy

  3. Ohhh, this is hard to take. Haven’t read this yet but I will this evening.
    Boy oh boy does that look like the way to spending life.
    Thanks for the pics and update, see you guys soon,
    Dan T

  4. Speechless. Sounds like the best of times, what great experiences. Give Daniel a squeeze on the butt for me.
    X

  5. Wow,

    What a magnificent adventure! I’m so pleased you two are having such a wonderful time. The mind wonders, and ponders…

    Hugs to you both,

    Paul.

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