Tag Archives: Brisbane

Hitting the Road Jack

We are finally on the road again. Have you ever felt held back, anxiously waiting in anticipation and lost? Having spent the past 3 weeks in Brisbane, waiting to leave has been a mixing pot of emotions. Some great, I love staying with my family, but it’s had its stresses as well. But, knowing that you are effectively stuck in a place you don’t want to be, waiting to go is horrible.

But, the day is here and we are finally packed, fuelled, have said our goodbyes and as we speak we are driving down the Bruce Highway towards Maryborough and Wongi Waterholes.

This is the beginning of the next chapter in our 12 month trip around Australia. I really can’t wait to share the experiences of our travels around this amazing country with you. Stay tuned!

King Island on a Lovely Winter Day

Although I’ve only been living in QLD for the past 2.5 years; however, feel that I’ve acclimated nicely. This means that when the temperature drops below 10 degrees I feel the need to have a bit of a whinge. Since it’s been a fairly mild winter in QLD this year I’ve not whinged too much thankfully 🙂

On a recent glorious winter weekend, Johny and I went for a drive to King Island. King Island is barely more than a raised sandbank off the tip of Wellington Point. It is only accessible during low tide when a sand bridge is uncovered and tourists and locals alike walk over to the tiny island.

King Island JettyOne Saturday we packed a picnic lunch and drove down to Wellington point. We circled the crowded car park a couple of times before finding some empty parks. Hopping out, we sat ourselves down on a grassy area off to the side and looked out over Stradbroke Island. After a mug of vino (yes mug, we were packing light), we walked around the small picnic area and over the sandy walkway.


As it was such a fine day we had a nearly uninterrupted view of the beautiful surrounding suburbs, headlands and far off in the distance cranes from some industrial areas. There were massive yachts, wind surfers and jet skis and on one side of the bridge, a muddy flat area. We walked to the island and walked back in a little over an hour. A word of warning, barefoot is best.


This little day trip definitely wasn’t the most interesting trip we’ve ever taken; however, it was a lovely short day trip and fantastic way to spend a warm and sunny winter day in Brisbane.

The Ugly Side of Moreton Island

Everyone says that Moreton Island is beautiful, and it is; however, that beauty is marred by the amount of washed up rubbish littering these beautiful beaches.

Moreton Island Matress

About halfway through our trip I realised that the pictures I was taking weren’t accurately portraying the island at all; therefore, I was actually doing it a great disservice.

If someone had told me that Moreton suffers from a serious rubbish issue, I would have packed extra rubbish bags,  some gardening gloves and Johny and I would have done our little bit to try and help out.

Moreton Island Rubbish



Moreton Island RubbishThis problem hasn’t gone completely unnoticed with the SEQ Catchments teaming up with P7 Offroad Driving to try and alleviate some of the problem.

However, this is only a patch up job, the underlying issues still exist.

Moreton Island Rubbish




So, although we weren’t able to help much on this trip, I hope this blog inspires you to do the right thing and contribute when you visit Moreton Island.



Our Weekend at Beautiful Bribie Island

Finally we’ve had a break from the seemingly never-ending downpour plaguing Brisbane for the past 3 months. To celebrate, Johny and I took our newly decked out 4WD and went bush/beach for a night. Our destination this weekend was the beautiful Bribie Island. We had only ever been to Bribie once and had no idea that beyond the suburban sprawl of Bongaree was a stunning natural recreation area.

Friday night was organised our camping and vehicle permits* and early Saturday morning we took off. Bribie is only an hour’s drive from Brisbane so we arrived early in the day. There was plenty of 4WD action happening when we arrived at the car park where the off road track began. It seemed other people had the same idea to take advantage of the fine weekend. We quickly deflated our tyres and took off down the track straight onto soft sand and beach.

Driving onto the beach

This was the first time we have been sand/beach driving and was quite an experience. The sand was soft and churned up by the numerous vehicles that had come before us. The beach was glorious. A wide, white ribbon of sand wove along the coastline and we drove straight down the centre of it. The waves were crashing on one side of us with sand dunes and native shrubbery on the other. It was a 19km drive to our campsite, since the speed limit on the sand was 30km/hr we had a lot of time to enjoy the breathtaking scenery.

When we reached our campsite we set up our new roof top tent, opened up the side awning, took out our camp chairs and had some lunch. During the afternoon we went for walks along the beach, sat in the water and played frisbee. By about 5pm it was getting cooler so we had dinner and sat in the tent. We fell asleep to the gentle sound of waves rolling in the distance.

Decked out 4WD

I woke up at about 6am; I climbed out of the tent with my camera, went down to the beach and caught the tail end of the sunrise. I stayed out there for about an hour. I nearly had the beach to myself at that time of the morning with only a couple of fisherman to share with. I walked up and down and took numerous photos. The tide had removed nearly all the tire treds from the vehicles traversing the beach the day before. Everything felt fresh, new and peaceful. I could have stayed out there for hours if my tummy hadn’t started talking to me.

Morning Beach IMG_3763

I went back to our campsite, woke Johny, made breakfast and packed up the site. We drove a little further down the beach and parked. From there we went on a 5km return walk down to the World War 2 fortifications, which extend up to the northern tip of the island. There is no much left, just a few crumbling buildings set into the beach. I wonder what the island was like back in the first half of last century? Did the beach look the same? We’re there this many March flies and mozzies? How did they cope without A/C? Seriously, it’s bloody hot!

World War 2 Ruins World War 2 Ruins

To get back to Bongaree we took the Northern Access Track, which went inland and down. The sand was incredibly soft, the track narrow and we didn’t always have great visibility. We had to make a number of stops to let other cars through and more then one nearly slid right into us.

On return to Bongaree we stopped for fish & chips and a beer overlooking the water. We then went home to wash down the car and unpacked. Since Johny bought us a year vehicle permit to drive on Bribie, I know we will definitely be visiting a lot more over the next 12 months.

* A must for camping and driving through the recreation area. Obtained from http://nprsr.qld.gov.au

Washed out of Harry’s Hut

What was meant to be a relaxing weekend for two turned into mud. We decided to take a nice romantic weekend for two up to Harry’s Hut just north of Noosa.

The traffic was terrible as we attempted to leave the city. The intention was to leave early to miss the mass exodus of citysiders leaving Brisbane for the weekend. Unfortunately our planning was for nothing as we were caught in the mass crush of vehicles for over an hour. On top of this a constant rain was coming down heavily, which probably should have been a sign.

Eventually we got free of the jams and entered into more country areas. We drove through tiny pockets of settlements, a number of isolated properties and rolling green hills. I wonder, while we drive, what it would be like to live in these tiny pocket towns so far away from the city and isolated in nature? How do these tiny little towns survive? Where do people work?

Rolling green hills

Rolling green hills

As the case seems to be with all of our trips, the GPS got us lost. It took us down a road which turned out to be a dead end. There were no sign posts, nothing. I programmed the GPS to find an alternate route which we followed. The total lack of signage ensured that we didn’t know if we were even on the right road or heading in the right direction.

We slid around on a clay packed road (Johny was in 4WD heaven) and then turned onto a forest track. By this time is was getting dark. On either side of the wet pot holed road were tall trees, the scene looked like something out of a horror story. We drove through long vine tentrils hanging thickly down the middle of the road hitting the windscreen as we drove through. Our progression was long and slow going through puddles of unknown depth splashing the windows as we drove through. Always in the back of my mind was the fact that we mightn’t have even been on the right road and there was no option to turn around, we just couldn’t fit!

Eventually in the pitch black we came across a campground. We drove through slowly, no street lights here to guide us, and allocated ourselves a site. Completely stressed out by this stage we managed to set the tent up; dinner was and informal fare of cheese, wine and a few games of Blitz followed promptly by sleep.

It rained on and off during the night. Camping in the rain is an interesting experience. The sound of drops hitting the canvas on and off, hard and soft, in patches or constant; and it is loud, so loud. Thankfully there was no storm, no wind, just heavy rain.

We awoke early, as you do when camping, to the sounds of the bush. Native birds, insects and frogs. People moving about, the camp was stirring. We set up the annex area of the camper; cooked some breaky on our new Weber and took the kayaks down to the river.

Even though we had never been to Harrys hut; we could see that the river had risen significantly as the jetty was completely under water. This didn’t deter us and we took the kayaks onto the river. As we are novices we never take the kayaks far; but, we didn’t have to, we were completely alone. The river looked like a large container full to the brim of water. There were no dry, parched banks; everything was full to the top.

On our return the Park Rangers had arrived. Tewantin, further up the river, had a lot of rain overnight and the water was coming our way. They had been instructed to ask all of the campers to move out. So with a soggy heart we packed up our little campsite which we had just set up and drove ourselves out and back home.

Tree corridor on the way out

Tree corridor on the way out

Flooded road on the way out

Flooded road on the way out

Mother – Daughter Bonding Trip

Mum came up to Brisbane on short notice, which was perfect as I was unemployed. We decided to take a mother-daughter road trip to do some camping and bush walking, something we are both passionate about.

We started off with a couple of nights at the Gold Coast Holiday Park where we lounged around the heated spa, read and relaxed.

After heading back to Brisbane for a couple of days, we drove up to Mount Tamborine in the Gold Coast Hinterlands. Unfortunately as we got there all of the little shops were closed or closing so we didn’t get much time to do any shopping. I still managed to purchase a 6 pack sampler of MT Brewery’s beers and we bought some homemade fudge.

We left Mount Tamborine early and drove to Binna Burra Mountain Lodge, which is part of the Lamington National Park. The drive took us through some lovely scenery and cute isolated villages with spectacular views. Once we got to Binna Burra we set up and went for our first walk. We got through the Caves Circuit and part of the Bellbird Lookout Track.

Once we got back from the walk we discovered we had neighbours where we hadn’t had any before. A bunch of blokes had set up camp next door. They were lovely and seeing that we were having trouble with our fire (we learnt the wood we had wasn’t great) gave us a box of fire lighters and some of their wood. As a thank you we brought them over some fudge and they invited us to join them. Mum and I shifted our chairs over and sat with them drinking and chatting for the next few hours before heading to bed a little tipsy.

The next morning we got up and left early to do the Coomera Circuit walk, 17km’s of rainforest, creeks, waterfalls and bush. We did it in 6 hours rather than the 7 hours the map told us it would take. We took some lovely photos and once back at camp we ate and retired early.

On Sunday morning we woke up early and went on a short 1.2kw rainforest circuit just to stretch out our aching limbs, on the return we packed and left and headed down south to Mount Warning.

Once we have crossed over the NSW border and had gotten off the Motorway, we found that the area around Mount Warning is simply beautiful. There was picturesque sugar cane fields with the stunning Mount Warning silhouette in the back drop. We drove through the cute little town of  Murwillumbah and onto the road leading up to Mount Warning Holiday Park, which is where we were camping.

The campsite we picked was lovely, completely surrounded by trees and birds. It was really hot, which after Binna Burra was a nice change. Once the sun dropped it got cold quickly but by that time we had a lovely little fire going strong. We had dinner and packed up so that we could just get up and go at 4am to climb Mount Warning to se the sun rise.

All night there was thunder and when we woke up at 4am there was lightning and it started to rain. We went back to sleep and got up at 6am instead.

It was a hard slog up the mountain, especially at the end where you had to pull yourself up by chains to get to the top. Once at the top the view was lovely, when the clouds cleared. We sat there for a while, took some photos and descended. The whole trek took approx  5 hours. Since this was the end of our trip we packed up and came back to the Gold Coast Holiday Park for some R&R before heading back to Brisbane.

We had a lovely Mother-Daughter bonding experience, I cant wait to do it again!