sunrise: Looking back toward Magnetic I. (left) and Cape Cleveland (right) as headed north from Townsville
- - -
Days 61=>68 (NW of) Saltwater Creek (29 miles), Zoe Bay (Hinchinbrook I) (52 miles), Cape Richards (Hinch. I.) (19 miles), Mission Beach (24 miles), Bramston Beach (days 65,66) (41 miles), Turtle Bay (34 miles) Yorkeys Knob (days 68-70) (16 miles)
Day 61, the first day out of Townsville was a pleasant paddle, though the SErlies had ceased - replaced with afternoon norhterlies, I made pretty good mileage.
Planning the following days paddle that evening in the tent - I got in my mind to push on to Hinchinbrook - favorable winds or not (note: with SEerlies - it would be a 'breeze' so to speak, with the predicted afternoon northerlies - well...).
The next day (62) I started at 2AM and finished the day at 10PM. A grueling 20 hour paddle which gained me on 50+ miles. I did take an hour break at Forrest Beach. Near the end of the break, deciding wether to carry on, I noticed the winds had stopped - so I got on the water again. The northerlies picked up after about an hour. I could
(should) have stopped, but pushed on - with the intent to get to the south end of Hinchinbrook I. for the day.
Kind of an uneventful paddle from there - other than the beautiful sunset as I passed underneath the Lucinda jetty, then, later - playing 'tag' with a trawler whose 'route' intersected with mine - several times. (I don't leave running lights on ALL of the time (batteries) - only when crossing bars or in fairly close site of other boats) I recall from previous trips - from this point on to the top - I encounter (need to watch out for) trawlers all the time (at night). Not sure why I come by them more here - is it because, I am now closer to the reef (from Gladstone - it is about 130 miles out, Bowen about 50, Cairns 15, Cape York 0) and trawlers fish closer to the reef - not sure.
Anyway - back to the 'long' day (BTW - I've paddled 24 hour days before - it makes a big difference when one is paddling against the wind - as was 'partially' the case here). I paddled into Zoe Bay (at low
under Lucinda jetty, looking toward mainland - sunset
tide), and made the 'longish' portage (3 packs and a yak) up to the head of the beach.
Long, hard day - I would have liked to get a full nights sleep - but I wanted to leave fairly early - in order to arrive at the north end of Hinch. I early in the day. As it tunred out - I had to get an even earlier start (by about an hour) due to the tide that looked like it might get up to where I was (though I did set the alarm for an hour before high tide - my 'mental' alarm worked this time)
For the next several days - whether I got enough sleep or not - during my paddles I kept getting (sleepy) tired - I'm blaming this 20 hour paddle.
At a stop (for the day) at Mission Beach - while putting the bungie straps (*** see 'footnote') to my sandals - I felt a stinging sensation on my feet. I discovered a tentacle of a blue bottle - and I hadn't seen (actually - still haven't) a blue bottle in several weeks.
As I'm writing this, I don't
Lucinda jetty, passing underneath, about 1/2 way of 3 1/2 mile long jetty
know how the pictures will compare, but in my memory, there is quite a contrast to the scenery of the surrounding area in Bramston Beach between my '06 trip and this one.
trip - see last 4 pictures of entry; 2009
trip - see pictures: 638,39,41) Trees down, foliage gone on last trip - this trip there was very little indication that 'Larry' came through (nearby Innisfail was devastated).
The paddle the next couple of days here to Yorkeys Knob was quite pleasant - with the 'occasional' showers, increasing to a more constant rain (uh, this is a ' rain forest
BTW, in the previous trips - I've stayed in Cairns - where the nice folks at the 'yacht club' have let me store the 'yak' during my stay. The building has since been torn down
(over protests & petitions by the locals), and, as I recall from an earlier trip - was turned away by the Cairns marina, so I decided to stop in at Yorkeys. I'm staying at a beautiful (and inexpensive) motel ( Villa Marine
) - just off the beach .
There's a swamp - or something just in back of my room -
sunset, headed toward Hinchinbrook for another 4 hours of 20 hour paddling day
I get serenaded by frogs and other nightly creatures overnight. The manager - Peter - has been extra helpful in tracking down things that I've been after.
Cooktown will be in another few days (after I leave here), then, after that will be a long stretch to the Top with no communication (unless croc's have learned to speak). So, hopefully, there will be an internet cafe in Cooktown, then, after that, my 'final' trip entry detailing the Cape York stretch will be written from Seisia (or some town south of there where I can get internet access).
*** I've modified my Mion sandals so that I can easily remove the 'straps' (bungies) - so that I can comfortably wear them in the kayak. I can remove and put back on the sandals in the kayak - with Sprayskirt on, while paddling. This is the 'best' year (so far) for feet comfort on these trips (happy feet).
Tot: 0.152s; Tpl: 0.011s; cc: 12; qc: 50; dbt: 0.0249s; 1; m:apollo w:www (126.96.36.199); sld: 2;
; mem: 6.5mb