Published: July 4th 2011July 1st 2011
Kids and Neville
Kids on Arnhem Land!
Kakadu to Darwin then Katherine
Okay, so there is quite a bit of travel to be covered here. We would have blogged earlier, however we were BUSY in Darwin and there is no OPTUS coverage from Katherine to Broome. Maybe TELSTRA for then next outback trip ....
So our last day in Kakadu we left our van set up at Jabiru and headed off to the East Alligator River. We checked out Cahill's Crossing which is the only access to Arnhem Land via road. The river was about 50cm deep, pretty easy for any 4WD, however we would have to get a permit to go into the brother's land. So we drove to the jetty to board the Guluyambi Boat Cruise. It was excellent, our guide, Neville, from Arnhem Land, took us down stream to Cahill's landing, not more than 50m metres into the cruise we see 3-4 metre crocs just swimming about in the river. When we had walked down there we didn't see any .. looked like a nice quiet spot for vehicles to cross and the boat ramp seem quite a nice spot to launch your fishing boat boat to catch some Barra. Neville told us
This was a big boy. We parked our 'Tinnie' right next to him. Buzz not getting out to push the boat off the shore!!!
not long ago a guy was fishing down in the fast flowwing water and was taken by a croc. Figured the crocs wouldn't go in there.
We turned around and headed up stream slowly. Crocs every 50m or less, large and small Salties! We stopped very close, almost touching distance to these 4.5 metre monsters. We went past the scene of a very famous Croc attack in 1985 where Val Plumwood was taken out of a canoe and survived 3 attackes by the same 5m saltwater croc and a crawl through the flooding river plains to be rescued later by the local Rangers. Quite a nasty story really. Her story is in the "Crocodile attack in Australia" book.
We were given some good tips on bush tucker and uses of plants and trees. Like using the silver melaluca tree leaves as seasoning for cooking Fish (adds a lemon grass flavour). We then stepped off the boat into Arnhem Land and we stretched our legs and checked out the ancient rock art. Neville gave us some spear throwing tips and demonstrations and told us about Tribal punishments administered by a punishment spear. Apparently the men are the only ones
Youngest ... and caught all the fish too!
punished in this way.
Have to recommend this East Alligator Cruise to anyone, comparing it to the South Alligator cruise out of yellowater, it was much more awesome!!!
We left Kakadu today and headed for Darwin. We organised to stay at the RAAF Base Darwin Fishing Club house, still sleeping in the camper, however we used their showers, toilets and kitchen. Kids turned on the TV for the first time in 2 weeks and were "bored" within minutes!!!! It's working!!!! Dinner was out to the Darwin Wharf, which you can drive out on. Be aware parking is limited on the wharf. There is a sit down seafood restaurant there, but the pick is the take-aways where there is Vientnamese, Malaysian, Indonesian, Chinese, Thai and Western style fish and chips and Schnitzels. My pick, Massaman Curry with Barra to be the best pick. After this we headed back into town to hit the souvenir shops which are open late and then ice cream!!!
Next day in Darwin we had organised the use of the Fishing club boat, a 4.6m stacer. We launched out of the Navy Base ramp, which was ideal as we were the only people there. We headed out and tried a few known Darwin Harbour fishing spots. Only nibbles. We think the crabs were getting a nice feed!!! We then made a B-line accross the other side of the Harbour to a river mouth and Ben, our fisherman, managed to catch 2 rock cod and 1 Brim. The rock cod we kept bur the Brim got a kiss and was back to fight another day. Unfortunately nothing was on the bight so we headed back in.
Quick change and we headed to Casurina Shopping Centre to pick up Ben's Birthday present and few items we didn't need and stopped on the way back at a shop that had some ornamental Buddas for sale. Jac couldn't go past it, so now we have a two foot ceramic budda to lug around australia... hopefully he will keep our travels safe!!!! Home and a BBQ and Ben's Rock CODs got a fry up alongside the burgers. They were awesome!
Unfortunately the next day we had to leave Darwin and head south. Katherine. We had planned to stay at Manbullo Homestead and van park, however friends of ours living in RAAF Base Tindal, 17km south of Katherine insisted we stay with them. We BBQ'ed with them for tea and crashed after our busy time in Darwin. Next stop Kununara.