Tuesday, 1 October 2013

80 Mile Beach / Millstream Chichester Nat. Park 19/9/2013

Today was a huge day of driving, we had to be up very early, firstly we needed to get off the road we were parked on before any farmers came down it, and we were racing the tide. Shell collecting at 80 Mile beach is best done at low tide. We got there at around 7.30 and drove straight down onto the beach, the tide was already starting to come in and all the fisherman were out. We drove about half a km down as we figured that all the good shells would have been picked up by campers close to the entrance.

It was absolutely amazing, so many fantastic shells, we both spent around half an hour walking around finding really beautiful shells.
That done we continued our journey on to Port Headland. Iain had worked there for nearly a year when we first arrived in Aus. I was very keen to see the place, and he wanted to show me around. We were both surprised at how big it was now, when Iain was there it was a very rough, basic mining town. It has changed a lot with a lot more berths built for the iron ore carriers, and has become very much more family oriented, with parks, schools and great housing. He showed me where he lived and I must say I was quite shocked – basically a tin shed divided into rooms! No wonder he hated it so much. We had lunch on the pier and watched a carrier come in – very impressive to watch, absolutely massive, and apparently that is a small one!

We now went onto Point Sampson, we had all lived there for a couple of months and were keen to revisit our old haunts. We were really looking forward to fish and chips on the beach. When we lived there it was a tiny fishing village with around 40 houses, a caravan park, a hotel and a fantastic restaurant called Moby’s. They were world renowned for their fish, and often had famous people from overseas flying in to eat there.
When we arrived, once again we were shocked by how much it had grown. It had become very tourist oriented and was at least double the size. We went into the restaurant only to be told that the kitchen was closed and would only open in the evening. We were devastated and it was then we noticed it had changed names. Disappointed we went for a walk on the beach and took photos of the house we lived in.

We knew we couldn’t stay there for the night, as once again it was crowded and everyone was packed in as tight as you could get. We found a National Park, Millstream Chichester, not too far away and set out. It was getting late, but we were confident as the first camp ground was right at the entrance. It was a lovely drive, and the area was absolutely beautiful. We entered the National Park and were absolutely blown away. We drove to the camp site, and it was closed! It was getting dark by now, so we started looking for somewhere to pull off. There was nothing, so we made for the next camp site 60km away. It was quite dark when we pulled in – it was full! Getting concerned we decided to try one more site before we went onto the main road to find a gravel pit. We pulled into the campsite and it was empty – only one other car. We quickly set up, had something quick to eat and went to bed. It had been an enormous day.

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