Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Frasier Island Redux


To do:
Six weeks of isolation - check
Haul Kalliope & paint the bottom - check
Test all systems -  check
Cast off the lines - check
Cross the Mooloola River Bar - check
Sail to Double Island Point - check
Anchor for the night - check

Greet the songbirds in the morning


Hitch a ride ashore with friends Greg and Lisa
We cross the Wide Bay Bar in perfect conditions so no drama and no photo. 
Now we are in Great Sandy Straight National Park where we find our way 
through braided channels among sand bars.


Enjoying another sunrise that couldn't be beat.
Spill out of The Straight into Hervey Bay.  We could not get a good picture of the spill.


Debbie shopping for sea shells by the sea shore.

 Anchor near the Kingfisher resort and
hike the trail to the site of the former Secret
WWII Frasier Island Commando School.


Get stuck driving the commando's not so secret surplus equipment.


Walk back 'cause the tractor is stuck.


Have such a good time we forget all about Mooloolaba sunsets.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Noosa River Bar


After three months of anti-social distancing we venture
out to the beach, still keeping our distance.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Subtropical Queensland

Well anyway, we rent a camper van and head south from Brisbane in March 2017.  Still in Queensland, we stop at Springbrook Falls N.P. for a walk on a well established trail.


After half an hour or so, Deb begs me not to take her picture because she is feeling the heat.


The main attraction of this park is a waterfall where a small stream tumbles
off a plateau falling a long way down before continuing the journey.


Along our walk to the bottom of the falls a harmless green tree
snake entertains us.  This one is for Henry.



Along the way we get occasional glimpses of the falls


When I was sixteen the thought of climbing down in the cool morning and up that long trail in the hot afternoon wouldn't daunt but . . . .  at least a unique feature awaits us at the bottom where the creek takes another tumble and passes briefly through a natural arch or tunnel if you prefer.


The cool mist at the bottom offers some relief.



Eventually we climb back out and take one last look at that long drop from the top.


All in all it is an experience uplifting for both body and soul.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Frasier Island








Parts of Queensland are in the third year of drought.
Bush fires are common and radio news announcers
routinely describe threatened regions while advising
residents to "Shelter in Place, Watch and Act or
Prepare to Leave."  Frasier Island has no residents
and no such warning but here is smoke from a fire
 that burns for days or weeks at the south end.

Straddie

Views like this attract visitors who take a ferry from Brisbane.
We were here before and came more for dive opportunities
than the view.
Kookaburras land on the spreaders to sing a song of welcome
but it sounds more like they are laughing at us.  We hosted many
birds aboard but never Kookaburras.
The beach stone curlew patrols the cafés and growls at the
diners until someone throws him a chip
The sulphur crested cockatoo sounds a loud obnoxious squawk
when it flies.  We see them everywhere in Queensland.
The rainbow parakeet gathers in large noisy flocks in the
trees near sunset.
The beach stone curlew patrols the cafés and growls at the
diners until someone throws him a chip.




Sunday, December 1, 2019

Atoll and Lady Musgrave Island


We enjoy four days of fabulous weather, diving and explor-
ing on the atoll and one small island called Lady Musgrave.
Noddys nest here along with several other species of birds. 
This marks our sad farewell to the Great Barrier Reef



 This is the narrow beach where we land the kayak.





When we leave for the next anchorage we pass through
another algae bloom.  These are common on the GBR 
this year.  Other than visual pollution no one seems
concerned about it and the fish suffer no obvious detriment.






Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Some time passes. I don’t know how much.  What am I, a watch?  All right, Kalliope leaves Brisbane, Australia for Vanuatu, an island nation about 1,000 miles NE.  We clear in with customs and immigration at Port Vila and take a leisurely tour of the islands.  Why visit Vanuatu? People, friendly welcoming and generous people at every landfall, every village.  Not everyone speaks English but you are never far from someone who does.



 Marie takes us on a guided tour around the island of Efate.



Albert is a friend of a Adam who we met in Alaska twelve or fourteen years ago.  We don't show Adam's picture but Adam spent two Peace Corps years in the tiny village of Mbenenvet, Vanuatu teaching home economics to village girls.  We give Albert the shirt with the logo from Dillingham, our home in Alaska.  We take this pic and send it to Adam who now resides in Switzerland.  Is this a little confusing? 



Norman is the Seventh Day Adventist pastor who was Adam's 
good friend when Adam taught here ten years ago.  I think Pastor
Norman is everyone's friend.



Albert's Mom is anxious to model the traditional costume of her village.



Lena is the first to welcome us to Lamen Bay on Epi Island.  
She takes us to pick pomplemouse in the garden then carves
and shares it with us.



Deb overcomes her shyness to get acquainted with these women passing
the time after church service in Lamen Bay on Epi Island.



The school bus from Lamen Island to the school on Epi Island.


Schoolkids walk across the shallows from school on Malakula to their homes
on tiny Avoka island.  At high tide they paddle dugout canoes.  They know
their tides well.  Hope you can see them in the distance.



Greta and Joseph operate a bakery where we buy two delicious 
familiar looking loaves.  Not those anemic baguettes popular
in this former French colony.