A very short night in Airlie Beach was followed by a very long drive to Turkey Beach near the Town of 1770 (named after the year James Cook set foot on land – how inventive!). On the way we actually had to stop at the side of the road for a bit because of heavy hail and rain.
Town of 1770 and Agnes Water are two little towns with a beach and a backpackers – that’s pretty much it. The waves are rather moderate and attract many first-time surfers. Claudia gave it a go, too, while I went for a swim and took some action shots. Between there and Hervey Bay lies Bundaberg, famous for rum. We tried to visit a turtle tour where you can watch turtles crawl up the beach, laying their eggs and then crawl back into the sea. But it would have taken too long so we drove on to Hervey Bay, departure point for our Fraser Island trip.
At 7am we had to attend the briefing and 30 people were split into three groups. We were in a group with Karin who we knew already from the Whitsundays and then there were the Belgian squad Jorn, Stijn, Peter and Mattias; Catherine from England and Eimear and Stephen from Ireland.
After a quick shopping tour the barge brought us to the worlds largest sand island! I made the start to drive along sandy tracks and through deep potholes, trying not to make the passangers sea sick. It rained most of the day but that didn’t really bother us too much when we stopped at Central Station for a short walk through the rainforest and Lake Wabby one of the many perched lakes of the island. When we hit the east coast we set up camp and had a big BBQ dinner. An amazing sunset welcomed us and promised better weather for the next day. Later that night a dingo had a closer look at the tents and caused a rush of people equipped with cameras running down to the beach, hoping to get a good shot of the wild dog. Not sure if anyone was actually successful…
I spent the night on the roof of our car and woke up with the rising sun at 4.30am (bloody Queensland doesn’t have daylight saving time!) but luckily managed to get some more sleep before breakfast at 7am. We had to start driving up 72 Mile Beach around 8 to catch the few hours before and after low tide. Just when we were about to leave, we were lucky to see another dingo walk right up to the cars and pose for some shots!
Driving on the beach was pretty cool! Some parts allowed to go 80kph whereas in others I had to slow down to get across little wash-outs and creeks. We stopped at Indian Head to walk up to the lookout and enjoy the view before chilling at Champagne Pools for quite a while.
On the way back we stopped at the Pinnacles and the Maheno wreck and put up camp near Ellis Creek.
On our last day on Fraser we headed inland again to Lake Mckenzie Amazing! Crystal-clear water, white sand … simply stunning! Probably my personal highlight of the trip although the whole island is just unbelievably awesome. And with ‘the best group ever’ it was probably one of ‘the best trips ever’!