(30/8/2017 – 6/9/2017)
We left Cooktown on Wednesday morning with our travelling companions (Daniel and Stacey and their 2 children – Summer and Harlem). We headed north on the Peninsula Development Road. We stopped at Musgrave Station for lunch and then onto our first overnight stop at Coen, The Bend.
We arrived at Coen mid afternoon. Well, what a beautiful little free camping spot!!! Beautiful fresh water creek for the kids to swim in, sandy beach area for the kids to play on and build sandcastles, various sized trees for shade and you were surrounded by mountainside. You have to be self sufficient though. Daniel and Stacey got bogged going through the water with the camper trailer but Andrew helped guide them out. After we set up camp, Andrew and I went out searching for firewood. I found a good sized log for Andrew to cut and he told me to be on snakewatch!!! What!!! Snakewatch!!! Yikes!!! Phew, there was nothing around!!!! When we got back to camp, Andrew got the drone out to take footage over the area. We also enjoyed our first campfire that night too!!
The next day we were up early, had breakfast and packed up. We decided to have a few nights at Captain Billy Landing on the east coast. We stopped at the Rangers Station at Coen to enquire and pay for camping at Captain Billy Landing which was in the Jardine National Park. All camping in national parks need to be paid upfront either online or at a rangers station. We continued north and stopped at Moreton Telegraph Station for lunch. We turned off the Peninsula Development Road and onto another 30 km 4WD track out to the coastline. It was very a narrow road, again all bumpy and winding and you could only do about 40km p/h. Today was a very long drive!!!!
Captain Billy Landing was another great camp spot. We arrived late in the afternoon and set up camp. Oh no, a few drops of rain!!! This isn’t good when you are in a tent!!! Luckily, the rain didn’t last. But it was very windy though. This wasn’t unusual for it to be windy here for most of the year. It was very cloudy the whole time which wasn’t a bad thing as there were no trees or anything for shade but it was still very warm during the day. Andrew fished a lot of the time but unfortunately didn’t catch anything. The kids played on the beach but you couldn’t go swimming due to crocodiles and we did some lovely walks up and down the beach and explored around the rocky coastline where we saw some caves filles with bats.
From Captain Billy Landing we drove up to Fruit Bat Falls. How stunning was this, just being a few kms in from the main road. We all had a swim and our (first bath/shower in days), had some lunch and then continued for more kms of red dirt to the Jardine River Ferry. We crossed over and then headed to Seisia Holiday Park where we booked in for 3 nights.
Seisia is located about 40km south of the tip of Cape York Peninsula and is the most northern community on mainland Australia. Seisia Holiday Park is situated on the beachfront (which is lovely but no swimming due to crocodiles). The “Seisia Kiosk” is open for dine in and takeaway meals. There is a supermarket, service station, mechanic and meatworks all within walking distance. The Seisia wharf/jetty is right next door, which is very popular for fishing and you can board the ferry from here to Thursday Island and Horn Island.
Another couple (Noel and Lorato) and their kids were staying at the park too (we had also met them at the Big4 in Townsville).
Noel had a tinny so Daniel, Andrew and him went out fishing one day with some success in bringing back a barracuda. After nearly sinking the tinny and taking in water, they finally made it back to shore!!!!
There is not much to do at the caravan park, unfortunately there is no pool. Since you can’t swim in the beach it would have been great if there was a pool to go swimming and cool down as it was quite hot. This would have kept the kids occupied as well. Lucky our friends Daniel and Stacey had a blow up pool which the kids loved.
On Father’s Day we all travelled together and made the trip to Cape York ( The Tip). After a rough drive, we stopped at the Croc Tent where they had more information about the Tip and it also had heaps of souvenirs too!!!
We stopped at a beach for some lunch before we walked to the Tip. Well, everyone talks about the drive to Cape York but not on one says anything about the long rocky walk to get to the actual Tip!! You really had to be careful walking there, (particularly in thongs!!!! LOL) It took all of us a good half an hour or so to finally reach the Tip!! Woo Hoo!!!! We are here!!!
It all felt surreal actually. Its something that is on the bucket list to get here and we finally made it. And being here on Father’s Day was even more special for Andrew.
It was quite windy and overcast here. Unfortunately Andrew could not get the drone up, didn’t want to risk it flying away!!!! We had the area all to ourselves so we spent nearly an hour here. All the guys went fishing!!! Well, they could not come here and not have a fish at the Tip!!!!!
On the way back to Seisia, we pulled over to Punsand Bay Campground and had a look around there. This was on the beach as well. I thought this was better than Seisia, at least it had a pool (mind you, it was a bit green so probably wouldn’t swim in it anyway). It had a nice restaurant and bar with lovely covered outdoor seating. From there we drove to Loyalty Beach and had a look around at this holiday park. This was also on the beach, looked like another nice place to have camped as well. We made it back to Seisia in the late afternoon. We then decided to go over to the wharf so Mitchell could do some fishing. He was very excited that he caught some “bait fish”. So, a fantastic day all round!!!
One day we did some exploring around the area with Noel and his family. Firstly we drove to a plane wreck from WW2 near Bamaga.
The First World War didn’t reach Australia, Australians fought over in Europe. But the WWII did come to Australia, which was the next Japanese target after PNG. Northern Australia obviously was the first front, particularly the Top End of Northern Territory and Cape York peninsula.
A DC3 which was under charter for military purposes left Archerfield airfield in Brisbane and was flying to PNG. It crashed on 5/5/45 and killed all 6 personnel on board.
We then continued on to Mutee Head. It was a great 4WD adventure following the Pipeline track, this is where Andrew went through a creek crossing and the water came up over the bonnet of the car, it was a little bit hair-raising that’s for sure!!!!!! It was a pretty narrow, very winding and bumpy track but we made it out all OK. We found our way to Mutee Head where we stopped for lunch on the beach, another beautiful unspoilt spot of coastline. It was another hot day and the water looked very tempting, such a shame you can’t swim up here because of the crocodiles!!! Andrew and Noel had a quick fish but caught nothing!!! After lunch we headed back to Seisia not before stopping at Bamaga for more alcohol!!! ($22.00 for a 2 litre cask of Yalumba wine!!!!!!). Wow, another great day out 4WDriving around!!!
(30/8/2017 – 6/9/2017)