Just a little weekender with the idea for us newbies to test driving campers on sand.
One day we won’t be the last to arrive at the meet point -(0630) But hey, at least we weren’t late! Quick coffee & bite to eat while we talk through the simple brief, basically head to Bribie & take the inland track to our camp for the night Poverty Creek.
Although I might of not been the most confident on directions as had been taken up there only once before, the bonus was no one would know if I got lost anyway!
We had 4 4WD’s for the weekend, 3 camper trailers, 4 visitors & 2 tents – Everyone was ready so off we went. Simple easy drive up the gateway with no traffic, we were a little spread out due to traffic lights at the start but all left the freeway together. Before we crossed the bridge over to Bribe we spotted an underbody wash which we thought would be handy on the way home on the Sunday, save a little of the clean up at least! Following the signs to Banksia Beach & White Patch even I couldn’t get us lost. I remembered to let everyone know about some very creative gas bottle sculptures along the esplanade just before we enter the inland track.
Getting to the end of the tarmac at the entrance to Bribie Island National Park we all air’d down, I chose to go straight to 18PSI all round as last time (which was my 1st!) there was plenty getting bogged in the exceptionally soft inland track, I’d started a bit higher that time but then stopped to let that bit more out – Although to be fair we had been having a lot of rain which would of firmed things up. We took our time taking it nice & easy with the inexperienced POM leading the way. There was some strange radio chatter & laughter I heard which just sounded like double dutch to me, but with Michelle also laughing I then became educated on 80’s Aussie icon Skippy (cue the skippy sound effects & ‘whats that Skip’) Guess you had to be there but glad I could add to everyone’s entertainment 🙂
Arrived into Poverty Creek nice & early, with a few morning fires smoking away, we were soon to find out why. Quite a good sized nice area with tree’s around in the group/trailer section with not many there so we found a great area for just us. We all chose our spots & then noticed the also good sized Goanna’s (again with a difference of opinion on pronunciation) wandering around. The early morning start saw us getting set up way before the heat of the day, poor Bec & her visitors finding they had a tarp packed rather than a mattress for the visitors. It wasn’t long before we were invaded… that right we were ambushed… By Mozzies! They were there in force – Black clouds descended on us, woe betide anyone who thought they were brave enough to step away from our spot, they only got worse! Suffice to say we weren’t going to spend the day at camp & there wasn’t much interest in the flat water of Poverty Creek so when everyone was set up we headed off to Main Beach & the Forts.
I think it was about 20k or so along the inland track to the beach access point but just very pleasant scenery & no issues with the sand now we had unhitched & unloaded. Was great for me to take a small group of Baysiders to this magic spot. The Forts providing a bit of history & the sea was perfect. We even managed to park up next to one of them & get awnings etc out for an afternoon at the beach, playing in the surf, chatting in the shade & a cold one or two. We decided to all head back down Main Beach to Woorim so some could pick up forgotten items – Insect repellent for the visitors, Ice creams after a day in the sun. This gave us a chance to visit the pretty impressive gas cylinder sculptures a local makes (at the end of White Patch Esplanade) so we all stopped there to have a look around them before heading back up the inland track to camp. None of us had brought any wood but as there was a few fires on the go already some of us went on the hunt for wood to smoke/burn to give a bit of relief, I wasn’t prepared for the attack when I left the main area, those mozzies were evil! We managed to get enough for the evening, not so much camp fire but at least some smoke. Everyone made their own dinners, I recon our curry smelt the best!! The evening was spent chatting over a few more cold ones.
Next day saw a lazy start with us all making our own cooked breakfast, we talked about our plans & decided that some would head straight to Brisbane & avoid the afternoon traffic (plus commitments at home) & others would make the trip back to the beach with the trailers. Packing down the camp certainly had no urgency about it & Michael even made a cake for everyone! Then we could hear a chopper approaching, bit late for us but they obviously knew how bad the mozzies had been & were performing an aerial spray, have to say I was pretty impressed with the pilots low flying manoeuvres. I have to say we’re certainly adjusting & loving the camper trailer lifestyle, so much less stressful packing down! I’d checked the tides & knew we’d be getting close to high tide with our lazy start by the time we got to the beach after negotiating the inland track with trailers in tow, but was confident we’d be OK. While we were on the track it was nice having some that overtook us giving the heads up on some particular rough sections of the inland track as they saw us towing. Although with tires dropped neither Bec or I had any problems & in fact actually caught them up, I thought we were going pretty well seeing as we’re both pretty new to this – Or was i thinking that too soon….
We got to the beach & decided we’d still go the rest of the way to the Forts as this was always meant to be our goal with the campers before we head to Fraser for the annual clean up. With the higher tide we had to snake our way through the trees etc in the soft sand, one section was a rather tight almost 180 up then down with no momentum, I very nearly came a cropper, took a little shuffling forward & back a few times but the Navara did me proud getting itself out without me needing to resort to the maxtrax. I could see Bec was a little unsure but I thought if she followed my tracks without coming to a stop she might well make it, she chose to give it a go – but getting stuck pretty much where I did but not in my wheel tracks. Alas the shuffling forward & back wasn’t going to work this time & could see the Hilux sinking down so out came my matrix & I found out how good they are digging in soft sand! I think it took about 3 wheels then I realised might be a good idea for one of the 2 passengers to give me a hand!! The matrix worked perfectly & Bec making sure she didn’t spin the wheels on them, we didn’t get quite clear on the 1st run so a reposition & she was out. Great team work!! In fairness to Bec it might of also had something to do with her trailer handbrake binding a little.
It was another great day on the beach, I put out the awning to give a bit of shade & headed straight into the sea. Again making our lunch & spending the afternoon there soaking in another beautiful autumn day, enjoying a fresh water shower courtesy of our newly installed water pump (Big thanks to Pete for ‘helping’ with it!) before heading back down Ocean Beach on the firm sand after the outgoing tide without any dramas, It was certainly soft & choppy at the exit & although we saw some stuck & both sailed through with our campers. We chose not to join the masses airing up their tyres with 12v compressors, well we had 6 tires each to do! So we drove carefully to the local BP where we could use their air instead, plus they make a great iced coffee! Then after crossing the bridge we both took advantage of running our 4wd’s & campers through the underbody wash there. It did mean we hit the motorway a few hours later than maybe planned but worth it for a fantastic day.
Had an absolute ball over the weekend & thanks to those who came & joined.
Until the next one…