Day 48 :: Peaceful Bay to Boat Harbour
Sandi has been looking forward to this day, and the canoe crossing since reading through the Guidebook during the planning stage! The Guidebook warns that "this is a long and challenging section that may appear more so in either very warm or stormy weather": I'm not sure I'd call today "stormy", but it was getting close and certainly impacted on the day; not that we knew that at the Caravan Park: we were just looking forward to the canoe crossing and walking through The Showgrounds that follow it.
At 12:15am P woke up and thought it was 3am, but checked and I was relieved as I hadn't got to sleep yet. Thankfully after that I did get off and we slept OK until about 5:30am. Then we got ourselves organised and tent fairly dry, so great after a windy night with many showers. The three boys (Michael, Steven and John) were up and happening too.
Day 48 Google Earth Track
We headed off first and had barely started when 1st of the rain came in. Ponchos out, but in the wind, quite hard. Really a fabulous view of ocean with sunburst at a high point very early in, was lovely and we went through a few changes of landscape from some trees to open sandy swamp and then the sand duney stuff.
Going along OK, but heaps of very short squalls, but wet plants on track and my feet soon felt wet. Nothing to be done but press on. We made good time into Irwin Inlet and took off ponchos as benefit not great enough relative to wind nuisance.
Our socks got wet very early on today, makes me wonder if our boots are failing – at camp, taking the gaiters off, my sock tops were not wet: therefore water in from boots!!
Overlooking the Irwin Inlet was very pretty, even though it was a grey day and the wind was blowing a gale. We took our ponchos off here, an extreme feat in the gale: I think mine eventually blew off over my head ;)
Headed to the kayaks. Three on our side, so P got me organised into one with my pack, and off I went.
Found it OK, but was really nervous. Had to work quite hard to steer it in the right direction. Very relieved to get over safely. P arrived with his, then we stored those and pulled out a couple of canoes and I towed one and P another and headed over again.
Because we knew the three boys were following us, we thought it would be best to make sure they had enough canoes for their trip. They apparently ended up doing something similar to us, to make sure the canoes were evened up on both sides :)
Just before I got in the boys arrived, which was great as I got safely beached, then P put me in the front of his and we headed back again. Very pleased it worked out so well.
Really enjoyed the canoe crossing – a lot shorter than what I was imagining – great fun and addition to the walk. All we need now is a flying fox over a ravine!
We headed straight off then, the weather came in again as we headed over the "showgrounds", which were a myriad of flowers, grasses, etc. and the conical hills in evidence. Saw kangaroos on the run twice and then emus, which was neat.
In the end had morning tea in the lee of a hill with good protection and it wasn't unpleasant. Headed up and down and up and down blown and buffeted, had put our ponchos on again. Finally onto the beach and the weather let up again, so ponchos off and shorts etc. drying just so much easier walking into this really stiff headwind.
The rain had stopped by the time we got to Quarram beach – but the wind was gale like. We took the ponchos off as the head wind was so strong. Thankfully the wind blown sand stayed close to the beach. By the end of the beach we were pretty much blown dry! Had to take my pack liner off as the head wind kept blowing it off. Lunch in the lee of the headland was very nice, with a yummy sandwich (special).
Quite firm sand and quite pleasant. At far end of beaches had lunch in lee of headland, which turned out great. Bit worried P would run out of petrol: cheese and ham sandwiches were delicious.
It was really difficult to tear ourselves away from that protected position, but we weren't about to camp there for the night, so off we went...
After lunch the gale on the headland was incredible – made walking difficult, as it would push you off the path, then stop and you fall off the other side. It was cold too, at least I was. Thankfully, the track went up and behind coastal sand hills, which gave a more protected walk.
Last part of walk was OK but seemed agonisingly long and rain came in again but we didn't put ponchos on, just doggedly headed on. Some relief behind hills again, but some open blasts! Awful. Very close proximity to a big kangaroo just before the hut. Changed and hot chocolates!
So we arrived quite wet and cold, and pretty sick and tired of walking in the wind and the rain. But dry clothes and a hot drink with afternoon tea really does work miracles to your attitude, so we fired up the JetBoil pretty quickly! We were carrying quite a few emergency hot chocolates, so I was glad to use them too.
Amazing to be lying dry on our sleeping mats with a cup of tea. The book said today could be challenging – and it certainly was – a lot of the day was cold – just warm enough when we're plodding along. Got quite wet along the showgrounds – which was amazing with flowers, kangaroos and emus – but also rain and wind (maybe gale). Quite difficult walking with the wind and ponchos, and we got quite wet (not wearing wet weather pants).
"Well, gee it's great to be back home"; so nice to get to the hut, what a tough, dig deep day. I was so relieved to be feeling reasonable it would be a cow of a day to feel "not your best". Long day and stormy weather, not heavy rain, but wind driven almost horizontal showers. Very difficult in our ponchos.
After doing our data logging whilst enjoying a hot drink, we set about setting up camp and looking out dinner. Because of the weather we decided to sleep in the tent inner inside the shelter again; I don't actually remember finding the tent sites here at Boat Harbour! It was enough effort heading off to the toilet in the rain, let alone putting up a tent. Then we did our standard lucky-dip for dinner, which produced wonderful warming beef meals!
|Soup||Beef Casserole Soup||4||4.5||4.3||4.5|
Unfortunately we'd got very wet at the end of the day, and our boots seemed wet for the whole day since walking through wet foliage during the early morning. So we wrung everything out as much as we could and did our best to turn the shelter into a Chinese laundry. I put my socks, wrapped up in Keren's towel, under the tent, so that we'd sleep on them all night and hopefully they'd be dryer by morning.
This shelter has a conservatory too – but the wind still whistles in – probably good for the wet clothes drying!
Our power supply / storage really had issues today, because of the weather: no sun through the thick overcast & rain. If there were too many days strung together like today, we'd run into problems I'd think.
Today's walk would have been very different in the sun (as indicated by comments in the red book) – but we took what was on offer.
Camera battery: The battery charged this morning over breakfast lasted all day – more due to the rain minimizing the number of photos than anything else.
No sun whatsoever for the FUSE!
So after a very satisfying hot soup and dinner & supper we headed off to bed, hoping that the clothes would continue to dry through to morning (putting on wet clothes is definitely not our favourite). As the Guidebook suggested, it was a challenging day, though not excessively long (our daily distance includes 3 crossings of Irwin Inlet :) ). I was rather disappointed that the weather was so inclement on The Showgrounds, as we were really looking forward to that unique landscape; it was still beautiful: but we were not encouraged to linger at all.
|Peaceful Bay||0.0||7:03 AM||0:00||0.0|
|Peaceful Bay Road||3.3||3.3||887.7||7:54 AM||0:51||0:51||251.7||3.9||3.9||3.5|
|Irwin Inlet Crossing||4.6||7.9||892.2||9:05 AM||9:43 AM||1:11||2:02||252.9||3.8||3.9||3.5|
|Quarram Beach||5.6||13.5||897.8||11:22 AM||1:39||3:41||254.6||3.4||3.7||3.5|
|Boat Harbour Campsite||10.5||24.0||908.3||2:39 PM||3:17||6:58||257.8||3.2||3.4||3.5|
Created by • Last edit by on November 23rd, 2018
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