Sorry BG for being late. I’ll try to get back into the swings of things 🙂
Hi its Wayno writing this town as Griffo has to prepare herself to write about Fraser Island.
Another peaceful little town, we stayed at the Big 4 again about 300 metres from the beach. The kids enjoyed the jumping pillow and pool etc.. until the magpies came to spoil the party. Poor Sarah was beside herself, the bloody thing seemed to let every other kid through on a bike or scooter until Sarah or Liv came through. Then it would swoop and swoop!!
Like a lot of these towns where swimming in the ocean is a no-no at certain times of the year, they had a free water park “Wet Side”. It was very cool, plenty of water jets, slides and even a wave machine, good for us to sit and have coffee while the kids get wet. Frankie practiced her walking across the water jets in the baby area, very cute.
The foreshore also hosts weekend markets which were small but big enough for Sarah to find donuts. We also tried one of those bicycle karts, 4 wheels, seats three and has the canopy over top. It didnt take long before the legs were full of acid. Sarah just wanted to steer and Livy ended up pushing the kart along after my pedal fell off. Too much like hard work for my liking, I’d ended up making a track and had the kids taking turns racing around it to kill time. Livy wanted to hire it for another hour, bugger that, I’d already told her the hour was up 15 minutes early to get rid of the thing. She moved on to the public exercise machines on the beach, not sure where she gets the energy or genetic’s!! Certainly not me, maybe Griffo??? Anyway a couple of pics
Where to begin ? I’ve never ever wanted to visit Fraser Island and for this reason haven’t given it much thought. I knew something about Dingoes and assumed it was for real ‘campers’. As we were already in Hervey Bay and we didn’t get across to the Whitsunday Islands, Wayne thought he’d book us a ferry ride over for the day. Turned out that there were a heap of specials going on over on Fraser Island and we managed to book into an apartment for the night. You can imagine my delight at the thought of a nice warm bubble bath and a bedroom with a door !
We didn’t tell the kids that we were staying overnight until we were almost on the Barge going over. They were pretty excited, Olivia more so than Sarah. The Barge took about 35 minutes and before we knew it we were on the Island. We had read that you needed a 4wd to get access to the part of the Island that we were going to but we both didn’t realise how full on the drive was. Pretty much you’re straight into 4WD-ing the minute you’re on the island. Wayne didn’t even get time to let down the tyres as it was totally unexpected. The girls of course thought this was ‘wicked and sick’ and were squealing their little heads off. I was indifferent. The apartment was 16 km’s away and I was looking forward to having an afternoon bath with a glass of bubbly ! why not ? After about 30 mins of driving and not getting very far, the sand was getting thicker and softer, we came across 2 cars that were pulled off to the side of the road. I immediately thought ‘uh oh they are bogged’ We kept driving another 20 mtrs or so and then Wayne stopped so he could let down the tyres. While he was doing that, one of the guys from the car that was pulled off came up and asked Wayne a million questions about the road, the tyre pressure and the conditions etc. He sounded nervous and was annoyed that they weren’t forewarned about the type of vehicle you should have etc. They were driving a Vitara and an X-trail and it seemed that they were getting bogged constantly. Wayne had a quick chat and gave them some tips and that was that.
Until we started to drive away and got bogged ourselves. Embarrassing !
I look around and the 4 people from the 2 cars are running up the sand mountain to help us out (now who’s helping who ?) and finally a snatch strap was pulled out and we were jolted to safety. Wayne was stunned for about 2 minutes and then excitement took over his body. He lives for this stuff.
So, now we were 3 cars stuck and there were lots of talks (and shovels) & dare I say LAUGHTER ! Olivia and Sarah were out of the car at this point, happiness oozing from their little bodies. Me ? Well, I wasn’t in the mood for chatter, I just wanted my BATH. After about 20 mins, everyone still letting tyres down, it was decided that the X-Trail would go first, if she got stuck (‘she’ being a nurse from QLD) then her friends (The 2 young Dr’s from London) would snatch strap her out of there, with the help of the WA bloke called Wayne. She reversed (I want to say 1km but I don’t know exactly – a long way) and then she fanged it up the hill. There were a lot of whoops and whistling and clapping and we thought she did it, until she didn’t and I saw her reverse lights come on and down she came 😦
More shovels, more shaking of heads and words of wisdom, followed by laughter. I look up and see Wayne’s face, he’s all ‘how cool is this shit’ and he even motioned for me to take some pictures ??? (which I did).. He got back in the car as it was decided that we should go first this time and maybe prepare the road for the other cars to follow, and I said to him ‘look how happy you are’ ? he had the grace to laugh and admit that he was ‘loving it’. The comradery!!! I couldn’t help but laugh with him (at him).
Eventually we all made it past this ‘hurdle’ and we continued on. We were 3rd in line again as Wayne wanted to make sure they didn’t get stuck. They did… time and time again. These next few times though were a little more difficult as there were now 3 or more convoy’s behind us that were being stopped because of an X-trail (that shouldn’t be on the island – courtesy of the tour guide that was driving the monster truck behind us).. All in all though, it seems that most men love a good bogging because they came in droves to help. Some with cigga’s, some with back packers, some with 15 tourists taking pictures (and a leak).. At one point there were about 25 people helping, and Wayne of course was relishing the brotherhood of mateship.
Finally we were all system’s go and Wayne ever so kindly said ‘ maybe the 3 of us should pull off so the cars behind us can go’ ? I had to point out that there was NO 3 of US ?? There was 1 of us and we didn’t even know the other people’s names….Of course I’m not that harsh though, so after making fun of him for saying that I agreed with him. I think the Landcruisers, the Patrols and the monster trucks were happy to pass us. One man said to the X Trail driving Nurse ‘Luv, you need to drive it like you stole it’ (a term that was later said by Wayno about a hundred times over the course of the 2 days)she listened and she managed to make it all the way back. So did we.. it only took 3 and a bit hours. We bid farewell to our new travelling companions, they were super lovely and and grateful and they were really sweet to Sarah and Lulu.. Wayne will miss them !
At this point in time we were a little frayed. The driving became pretty full on, and I’m not just saying that. My head hit the roof of the car more than once, and even Wayne apologised to the girls… the excitement was wearing thin once they realised that their little sister Frankie was as white as a ghost and their little bodies were being flung around. One of the tour guides did mention that the conditions at the moment were the worst they’d been in a while as there had been no rain for months. That explained a lot.
FInally we got to our apartment and I had joked that I bet the bathroom only has one of those triangle baths at the bottom of the shower. Wayne was looking worried and nervous so I became very quiet. . As we entered the room Wayne and Olivia went straight to the bathroom and within seconds I heard ‘it’s all good griffo, the baths a decent size’.. relief washed over me and within minutes I was soaking in it !!
Guess what ? It rained… and rained and rained and rained. We hung out in the apartment lounging on lounges, Frankie walked around and loved it as she had space to move. The girls played in their ‘new’ bedroom and eventually we dragged ourselves to dinner.
The following day I didn’t know what to expect. We had to be back at the Barge at 5pm so we had a lot of hours to explore the Island. We were told that the beach driving was amazing and there was lots of things to see, such as the shipwreck, Eli Creek and the Champagne Pools. All of which we did, a much easier drive than the day before. We saw a lot more people this day, lots of 4xxxx drinking footy mates cooking snags on the beach, lots of lone hard-core fisherman and the odd bikini babe and their posse. It was interesting and exactly like I imagined.
Dingoes were everywhere, so we were told time and time again, although we only saw 2 (and we were in the car thankfully) Sarah and myself got into a mild panic after reading all the signs about the dingoes on Fraser Island. The wording wasn’t that friendly ‘if you’re attacked, defend yourself aggressively as you are fighting for your LIFE’. Needless to say, Wayne had to go with us to the toilet more than once
Would I go back to Fraser Island ? Not in a million years, but very glad we did it. Wayne had a great time and I think it’s something he’d like to do with his mates. Eli Creek and the Champagne Pools were picturesque but still has nothing on Pinkies Beach at Rotto 🙂
Back to the barge, and it was windy and cold by this time. A very long day driving along the beach all day and then back on the boat, more driving back to the caravan park… you can Imagine Frankie.. she was Cranky Frankie 100%.. We all slept well and I hate to say it, but it was ‘good to be home, back in the van’ .. I managed to have 2 hot baths though !! and Wayne celebrated his b’day on Fraser Island too… it wasn’t all bad !
This brings me to the end of week 13…. off to Noosa next and I think that next weeks Blog will be about me loving it and Wayne wishing he was back on Fraser Island, away from the shops and the markets and the hustle !! Opposites attract don’t they say ?
Take care everyone…
The Travelling Morrells x