Daintree and Cape Tribulation
The thing that got the ball rolling for our trip to Australia is probably our communications with a fellow in the Daintree Rainforest. We secured a 'workaway' position with him and knew that we would have a place to go and work (for room and board) upon our arrival. This lovely place was The Daintree Manor and I urge anyone that's in the area and looking for a place to spend the night to go to. It is the very meaning of 'above and beyond'. Well worth whatever it is that's charged.
|View from the deck just outside our room|
We stayed there for a week and a half helping the owner with gardening, general yard work, and taking care of the chickens and guinea fowl. Our accomidation was a lovely room with a breathtaking view of the Daintree Rainforest. We were neighbours to many beautiful birds, butterflies, geckos, and a few snakes! We saw one such snake at one point; it was a small brown tree snake and we also saw signs of a large python as well (probably a carpet python?).
Our work only lasted 4 hours of the morning so we had the whole afternoon to go out and play! This was the best part because the range between where we were staying and Cape Tribulation is along the ocean and basically just one beautiful beach after the next. Our favourite beach was Cow Bay and we visited frequently.
|Adorable digging crab! It has flat feet and can bury itself in the sand in half a second.|
|Cow Bay, Northern end|
|A somewhat private beach to the short North of Cow Bay|
|Having some fun :)|
|Drinkin some drinks|
Unfortunately it didn't take long to visit all the beaches and do everything we had aimed to do... we grew antsy and decided it was time to leave our beautiful rainforest dwelling and continue our exploration!
Back to Cairns
In Cairns, we began our search for gear. We reasoned that the cheapest accommodation anywhere (besides freeloading off wonderful people) would be free camping and, failing that, campsites. We found a large portion of our camping gear from Gumtree which is a site not unlike craigslist in Canada. It's a great website and you can find almost anything there. It's also where we got our car :)
We got a 3 man tent, double air mattress, two way hand pump, tarp, 4 camping chairs, camp stove, citronella lantern, 2 sleeping bags... all in good shape and all for $75! BARGAIN! We picked up our odds and ends from 'Op shops' (Thrift stores) and a bunch of stuff from KMart. It all ended being quite reasonable and proved a good way to fill a car! Everything behind the front is level with the back seats though so we still have lots of room. Good for visibility! Safety! Yay!
|Quick set-up test at our friends house :)|
We decided that we had to test our sweet set up with a night in Chillagoe, a nice little town to the west of Cairns. The drive to Chillagoe was really interesting and covered in the quintessential aussie red dirt. I'm not sure why but for most of it it was paved but there were patches of unpaved road? Im sure theres a reason, I just don't know it... it any case, it was odd.
|On your left: REDDIRT|
Chillagoe was a cute and tiny town! We took a walk around the town in the evening and everyone was very friendly to us and waved. In the evening we watched gallahs fly around our campsite and make cute squacking sounds in their huge flocks. The next morning we drove around and did some sight seeing. We went and did the self-guided caving tours that are there and Graham found them very vanilla compared to what he's used to. I found them to be challenging (I'd only been in one other cave before that) and was horrified to find huntsman spiders in them. One was HUGE! I estimated 4.5 inches, Graham figured it was 5 inches leg to freaky leg... Giant spiders in the same cave as me? Hmm... wasn't my thing.
We did see a bat in one of the caves though and that was quite interesting!
|Our wonderful set up! In front of Graham is a bottle of very cheap and very awful wine though. Hungover Angie.|
|Climbed (hungover) to the top of a hill to see the sunrise! Sorry for the black bit on the top left, I`m not great with panoramas.|
|Beautiful morning in Chillagoe|
|Graham likes this picture. I don`t want to comment on my feelings towards it.|
We liked our campsite so much that we decided to spend the night there again! We decided that we didn't really need much else for our camping gear except possibly a lighter or matches. Not essential as we had a little self lighting gas stove, but still nice to have.
Lake Tineroo, Fong-Un Campsite
So far this has been one of my favourite stops. I've discovered that I really like all the different types of birds here. I have a bird book and every time I see a new one I write down the date and where I've seen it for the first time. Although I'd seen a handful of them before, Lake Tineroo had 24 different birds that we counted! There were two types of new parrots, two types of cormorant, a handful of different types of ducks, a fantail, and a few other interesting ones as well!
Coming soon, a post about birds!
It was a beautiful campsite right on the lake. It was also quite cheap at $11.50 AUD for the two of us because it was a provincial park! Great deal :) It was a bit cool at night and overcast the next morning but it was beautiful none the less. We even had some fun when it got dark and did some light painting :)
In the morning we set off towards Innisfail and stopped at basically every waterfall along the way, of which there were many. There's not a lot to say about waterfalls so I'm just going to post a bunch of pictures with captions, enjoy!! Wherever there wasn't a waterfall, the landscape was unexpected and incredibly just beautiful rolling hills. It was magical and nothing at all like the road to Chillagoe.
|Millaa Millaa Falls|
|Lunch at Millaa Millaa Falls|
|Mt. Hypipamee Crator Fall|
|Beautiful hills on the Tablelands|
|Wooroonooran National Park, North Johnstone Lookout|
Our plan when we got to Innisfail was to find a cafe with free wifi so we could charge our devices and make a game plan. We did exactly that and had some lovely italian coffee at Sapporo D'Italia.
We decided to go a bit further North and stay at Bramston Beach for the night. It's exactly what it sounds like and we camped right off the beach! At night we moved our camp chairs to the beach edge and read, listening to the waves on the shore. Every 10 min or so I would ask Graham to do a sweep with his headlamp to check for crocodiles though... I think this is the paranoia that is safe to have. I'm afraid of crocodiles but that's okay.
|Scary Croc... this guy was at the Cairns Tropical Zoo|
It rained a bit of the night and our tent held up well! Good to know we can rely on it.
The next morning was bright and sunny and it was lovely to poke my head out of the tent at the sunrise over the ocean.
|Bramston Beach, what a beautiful thing to wake up to!|
With an invitation to a bonfire (that we're probably not going to be able to stay awake for) in a few hours, we are back at our friends house in Cairns :) I'm happy that we get to stay in a house in a real bed tonight, but I don't want to discount the comfort of our tent set up. They are both nice but in different ways. And right now I think I'd like to sleep in a bed that I don't have to fill up with air.
That's all for now! Cheers!