Monday, February 04, 2008

Camping log, days 1-3

Mon Jan 21 Left Hobart at 9.30, went to Carlton River to see our old house. Looking amazing. Coffee with Terry. Back to Sorell and up and over Bust-Me-Gall Hill and Break-Me-Neck Hill to Buckland. Lunch there, looked in old church (John Lee Archer I think). Cemetery full of Turveys, McConnons. Beaut stained glass. On through Orford to Trianbunna. Stayed in Caravan Park there. Forgot my list of what to do. Put the tent down on dirt, made a little porch with groundsheet. Everything worked OK. Put boys in tent, we slept in van. Boys yakked for hours so we put Michael in van and I slept in tent with Marcus. Reasonable night but quite cold.

Tues Jan 22 Porridge in microwave for brek. A bit lairy of gas burner setup. Packed up no trouble, back to Orford to look at "Convict Road". Undistinguished track, no information there about it. Drove along to Raspins Beach north of Orford. Surf v. flat. Spectacular, classic white sand, azure water. I swam while boys paddled in shallows - idyllic. We drove on intending to stop at various things that weren't signed, Boltons Beach and Little Swanport. Got to Mayfield Bay campsite around 1pm. Had a look and decided to stay. $2 donation per night, no water or power. Quite crowded by evening, lots of long stayers. One well set up camp has satellite dish! The beach here also stunning but surf pounding, might swim tomorrow. We walked along the beach to old Mayfield Jetty, saw the 3 Arch Bridge (convict built) on the way back - hard to spot when heading south. Spaghetti for dinner. Tried to wash dishes in surf to save water. Had to use our water to wash sand off feet back at camp. Groan.

Wed Jan 23 Gave UK cyclists some water. Twice. Michael in and under old campfires and rubbish piles the whole time. Had to clean them all up to get some peace. Much calmer sea this morning. Camp filled to brim by nightfall. Muslim man with white cap and full beard, drove his Maui van into a tree. The over-cabin part that you can't see while driving clipped a solid bough and made an awful noise. I washed dishes in sand (more successfully) this morning then bodysurfed. Last night Michael and I in van, Elf and Marcus in tent. I prefer van, Elf prefers tent, but she worried all night about falling branches. Sea was very loud. Forgot to pay $2. Elf swam in sea this morning, first time in years. Set off about 10, first stop Spiky Bridge. Really first class beaches along here, Kelvedon Beach and Spiky Beach. Walnut plantations. Cranbrook, practically a ghost town. Into Swansea. Checked bank balance, rang a few people on payphone - mobile not working. AAPT cover only cities it seems. Ice creams and coffees. Heard in cafe on radio that Heath ledger died. Bought groceries and 4 litres drinking water. Carried on to Coles Bay. Probably should have got powered site in the Nat. Park since everything we want to do tomorrow is in the Nat. Park anyway. At Iluka Caravan Park. Boat ride to Hazards Bch is $210 family, so we'll do drives and short walks instead tomorrow. Not sure if we need to boil local water here or not, certainly do in Swansea. (Lunch today ham and salad sandies at Iluka. Dinner, sausages & mash). After lunch noodled without setting up, then walked down to nearby beach. V. shallow, lovely view of Hazards, beaut colour to water. Saw white-bellied sea eagle. This camp very noisy today and tonight. Big party happening in bbq shed. VERY windy. Tent very hard to put up. Now flexing around all over the place. Everyone around has been friendly. Saw muslim man again, and wife in full cover-up hijab. Head to toe black. In boozy bikini-clad caravan park. Good on them. 9.40pm Marcus finally asleep. Man beside us with serious looking rigid metal-framed camp arrangement, backed his boat up to give us a bit of shelter from wind. He said not to worry, tent would be fine. First shower and clean shirt. Barking at kids is tiring, but not much different to home - I'm really quite enjoying it.

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