Last Night at the Proms

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April 10th 2013
Published: April 14th 2013
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This seagull was enjoying itself splashing in the shallows of Tidal River
Day 1609

9 April

Despite it being a warm night the morning was a little on the cool side, but it did not deter me from putting shorts on in the hope that the sun would come out.

As I emerged from Gypsy, Ken’s voice said “Good Morning!” to which I replied “Good Morning”, however as I emerged my glasses steamed up as the cool air hit them and I could not see a thing, least of all where Ken was sitting.

I noticed that the bucket of “grey” water that I left under the trailer last night had been tipped up, assuming that none of us was mischievous enough to do that, I think that we had a visitor in the night who was strong enough to bulldoze it’s way to knocking the bucket over whilst hunting for food. It would not have tasted nice as it was soapy washing up water.

The Truman family had brought their surf boards down with them, so Ken and Josh hit the surf, followed a little later by Kahlia, Jodie and I armed ourselves with cameras and headed to the beach in the hope of some good surf photos. Unfortunately being a very cloudy and dull morning, it wasn’t lending itself to many good photos so decided after a while that a cup of coffee sounded more promising so we joined Andy back at camp, who by now had done the tidying up and finished off last nights washing up.

We were lucky enough to get a camp spot on the beach side, Norman Beach, (5th Avenue to be exact). We were near a ramp which took you straight over the top of the dune and down to the beach. So getting to and from the beach was easy.

One by one the remaining Truman’s came back to camp, looking cold and in search of refreshment, sitting around was not going to last as we decided that a walk was in order. As this is a favourite haunt of the Truman family (& friends) they wanted to show us a few more of the sights the Prom had to offer, so off we went on a short walkabout down the lane, onto the beach by Tidal river and took the track up the river bed toward the bridge.

Jodie explained to me that this whole area was flooded, back in 2010 (I think), the rain came down and it poured, every now and then you see a small information board which shows pictures of then and now, you can see how bad the flooding was, it washed away paths, parts of the road and a bridge. Some campers had to be rescued by helicopter, others had to be ferried across the river by barge. Though much has been done to repair the damage and reopen most areas, it is still evident that work needs to be done.

On one of the Truman’s visits, they said that the water in the river was so high that when the tide came in, the waves would crash way up the river, causing further damage by way of eroding the banks and the paths that sat above them.

Wilsons Prom is a lovely place and we are so glad to have made the effort to get down here. If we had more time we would have done some of the walks on offer, there were plenty to choose from.

There is a walk up to the lighthouse, but it is roughly 17k’s one way, so an overnight hike is the way to see it. There are some cabins at the lighthouse you can rent overnight for a good rest before the return journey, however one of the rangers tells us that most people book for 2 nights, leaving a day in between to recover from the walk in, enjoy the environment (completely isolated) and summon up the energy for the long walk back the following day!

You cannot drive up there. In fact the ranger tells us that even when they do have to work up there, they take the management track but still have to walk the remaining 3k’s in.

Unfortunately it was only a brief visit for the Truman’s and back at camp they started to pack up as they had to head back home to Inverloch.

We all sat down for a while before they left, and the wombat that we found on our arrival made a reappearance, he was starting to walk through his usual route and realised there were a
Wombling Through CampWombling Through CampWombling Through Camp

This resident wombat appears much earlier than the others.
lot of people there so diverted. He still came through camp, did not find anything and wandered off, closely followed by Andy. I am pretty sure that this wombat did his best to shake off his shadow, everywhere he went Andy seemed to follow.

Sometime in the afternoon, we once again said our goodbyes and promised not to leave it 4 years before we visited them again.

That said, now we know what delights this part of the country has to offer, perhaps they will get fed up with us swinging by! There is a lot more exploring to be done here.

We watched them disappear down the lane and no sooner than they had gone a car appeared and took their place. We thought it would be another camper, but with a car full of surf boards, this one only wanted a parking space, he changed into his wet suit and ran off over the ramp with his surf board.

Andy and I decided to go and explore to see what else we could find. We drove up to the car park on Mount Oberon. This looks like a good walk, it was only 3.5 k’s one way but it was a little late in the day to do it. We looked at the view from the little look out which was stunning and then we moved on to Squeaky Beach.

We walked onto the sand which was supposed to be squeaky because of the high quartz content. The sand was a beautiful pristine white, but I did not find it very squeaky and you had to work hard with your foot to make the sand squeak. I am not sure if it is more squeaky when it is hot, I took my thongs off (just a reminder that I am talking about flip flops) and walked bare foot, the sand was by now quite cold as the day was mostly overcast and did not really warm up.

There were a few people around, taking photos or picnicking on the beach.

We did not see any wildlife on our drive out but a text from the Truman’s confirmed that they had seen Emu’s on their drive home. So to remedy our lack of wildlife we waited until it was getting dark and then set off for a walk around camp with our torches.

We were not disappointed, a few minutes in and we spotted our first wombat of the evening, followed by a second wombat that we watched for a few minutes trying to break into someone’s esky.

This wombat tried very hard first by knocking into it from each side to see if it would topple over, then when that failed, he tried lifting the lid with his nose, but he could not keep it open, so he would then stick a paw under the lid as well as his nose, but he was struggling to manage that as the lid kept crashing down, we must have stood there for about 10 minutes and watched this valiant effort, he tried hard, but failed and was then shooed off by the owner of the esky.

This Wombat waddled past us, confused as to why he had been shouted at, he was only trying to relieve someone of their goodies.

Our evening scout for wombats was successful, we found 6 in all, including one that was on the dune just behind our trailer when we got back. I think we found a great spot for wombat hunting.

Our last night at the prom was a quiet one in comparison with last night, after the surf due left earlier, I did expect to see another camper, but no one arrived and took the Trumans spot.

The evening was not as cold as last night, so there was no need for a hot water bottle. In fact it was so warm I even opened the skylight window to let some air in.


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