Week 78 | Bakers Creek, Mackay to Bowen

Day 540: Bakers Creek

It’s our last day at Bakers Creek and it’s time to get the van ready to move onto our next destination.  We’ve stocked up on all our groceries and alcohol and Andrew has washed the car.    We’ve had a great week here exploring Mackay and catching up with friends.  We are keen though to move onto a new location.

Wildlife: ibis, cattle, horses.

Day 541:  Bakers Creek to O’Connell River

It’s 9.30am by the time we hit the road and a very pleasant 18 degrees.  We are heading for the O’Connell River Whitsunday Caravan Park which is only 102km away.

Driving into the park we both look at each other and have second thoughts on our decision.  The area on the left is overgrown and there are some very, very old caravans.  The office is rundown and there’s a note on the door to ring the owner. We meet Rod who shows us a couple of available sites.  It’s not difficult to make a decision.  We’ll take the one that backs right onto the river. Past the office, the lawns are green and mowed.  There are large sites with concrete slabs that you can drive through. The park is right beside the highway, but we’ve just spent a week near the highway so it is not going to bother us.

Andrew has backed the caravan in and we are all set up in no time.  Time for a late  morning tea then a walk down to the boat ramp.  We are both pretty keen to get the fishing rods out!

The park sells bait so we are all set.  We’ve taken the chairs and all the fishing gear down to the boat ramp and last of all is Cinta.  Andrew gives me some instructions on how to bait my line and cast out.  I’m all set.  We turn around and Cinta has jumped up onto his chair.  In no time she is off the chair and annoying Andrew.  She’s trying to climb all over him.  It appears she is worse than a spoilt child so after 10 minutes Andrew decides she is going back to the caravan!  No fishing for Cinta today.  There are quite a few fish jumping in the river. Something big must be chasing them. A stingray cruises past along the bank and it’s tail is about 3 times the size of its body. The fish have been elusive today.  We’ll try again tomorrow on the high tide.

Wildlife: ibis, horses, dead kangaroos, lorikeets, cattle, stingray.

Day 542: O’Connell River

After a lazy start to our morning we pack up the fishing gear and head down to the river.  There doesn’t appear to be much difference in the tide levels. We fish for most of the morning but unfortunately there is no fish for dinner again.  It’s windy and there are light drizzly showers of rain coming across in intervals throughout the day.

Most of the afternoon is spent reading and relaxing.  Andrew is cooking a pork roast for dinner tonight.  Yum!

Wildlife:  stingray, sea eagle, sea hawk, kookaburra, kite.

Day 543: O’Connell River

It has rained on and off throughout the night.  The BOM doesn’t show a lot of rain around so we decide to head into Airlie Beach for a drive.  Neither of us can remember the last time we visited Airlie.  Wow, it certainly has grown.  Despite the virus, there are plenty of people out and about.  There is a lot of construction going on too.  It would appear that Airlie Beach has come back after experiencing Cyclone Debbie in 2017.

We drive out to Shute Harbour.  It’s undergoing a $35 million dollar rebuild of the Harbour and seawall.  Access is limited.  We head back into Airlie to the Coral Sea Marina Resort for a coffee.  It’s the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands.  The view over the marina is spectacular.  Azure blue water with million dollar yachts moored at every berth.  The life of the rich and famous!  We enjoy our takeaway coffee while walking along the marina pathway.  The drizzly rain drives us back to the car.  Airlie Beach was still picturesque even on a drizzly day.

Wildlife: ducks, cattle, horses, sea eagle, dead wallabies, Shetland ponies.

Day 545: O’Connell River

Our last day here at O’Connell River and trying our luck again with fishing.  It’s quite a warm day, the sun is glistening on the river  and there are a few fish jumping near the bank on the other side.  Will we be lucky today… it appears not.  Oh well we’ve had a lot of fun over the past few days anyway.

The remainder of the afternoon is spent reading.  I’ve almost finished my second book. Quite an accomplishment for me as I haven’t read in years.  Next week I hope to get my sketch book back out.

Wildlife: kookaburras, lorikeets, sea hawks.

Day 546: O’Connell River to Bowen

We’re excited to be heading for Bowen today to the Wangaratta Caravan Park which is very close to the beach.  It’s 23 degrees at 9.00am when we depart.  Our journey is less than 100km today so we pull up at Front Beach where the little mango is and have our morning tea.  The big mango is out on the highway and there isn’t much parking space available there for caravans, so we’ll go back for a photo another day. We have a lovely walk along the foreshore.

I’ve got Andrew backed into the site in no time and we are all set up in a nice spacious site. We head down to the beach for a walk and there’s a guy fishing on the beach.  He pulls in a whiting and tells us he’s been there for 5 minutes.  We are keen to do some fishing again!  It’s so great to feel the sand between our toes and to dip our feet in the warm ocean.

Wildlife: dead kangaroos, kookaburras, swans, ibis, cattle, seagulls.

Day 547: Bowen

The alarm goes off at 6.00am.  The kettle is on and the tea is made.  It’s time to walk down to the beach to see the sun rise.  There is nothing more peaceful than the sound of the ocean at sunrise.  Bowen turned on the wow factor for us today.  Within half an hour the cloud coverage turned from dusty pink & grey to golden yellow and burnt orange.  The colourful show reminded us so much of our sunrises at Mission Beach.  My iPhone was working overtime.  We all had a lovely long walk along the beach.

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Back at home for breakfast and then we are heading out for a drive around the beaches. Horseshoe & Rose Bays, Kings Beach and Flagstaff Hill.  We are really pleased that we are staying at Queens Beach as it is our pick of all the other parks.  The 360 degree view from Flagstaff Hill is so picturesque.  Boats all jetting out on the azure blue ocean, sail boats moored in the harbour and fishing trawlers far out on the horizon.  Bowen is certainly picture perfect.

Back at the park for a quick lunch and then we’re going to try our luck down at the beach for a few hours fishing on the incoming tide.  Andrew is the lucky one today catching a small trevally.  Back into the ocean it goes.

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We’ve met Cathy and John from the Gold Coast who are opposite us in the park and tonight we’re having happy hour with them.  Happy hour went a bit longer than expected… It turns out that Cathy and John are heading to Mission Beach.  They’re going to spend a couple of days with a very old friend.  It also turns out that their friend lives just around the corner from us.  What a small world!  

This week has certainly flown by.  We absolutely love Bowen and the location the park is in.  We’ve decided to stay an extra 4 nights!

Wildlife: seagulls, lorikeets, kookaburras, sea eagles,

Week 78 total expenses: $616.47 under budget!

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That’s a wrap for life back on the road.

PS: Don’t forget to leave me a comment!

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