Noosa River day 2: Camp 3 to Cooloola Sand Patch return (Queensland, Australia)

I always sleep well in my tent. There’s something about the fresh air and sounds of nature that does it for me. When I wake I am refreshed and ready to explore. I lower my kayak into the river at 6am. It’s so still that every blade of grass along the banks is reflecting clearly on the water. I feel like the only person on the river and see no one as I drift and paddle upstream. Campsites 4 and 5 are deserted and tranquil. The only sound is the gentle lap of water from the small ripples my kayak creates.

 photo 941069_10153922632776181_6486475717312885112_n_zpsct6jdxco.jpg

For an hour I drift and paddle a gentle path across the onyx black water. The sun comes up . First it reflects orange light sharply on the water before quickly rising to reveal a blue sky.

I return to camp an hour later and find Mum is awake. I cook a breakfast of semolina pudding (semolina, powdered milk, sultanas, water and honey). It is infinitely more tasty than porridge and just as easy to pack.

 photo 1933429_1696293633916095_4671487605572774397_o_zpszacu5ryg.jpg

You can walk to the Cooloola Sand Patch from camp 3 so I suggest this instead of paddling further upstream for the day. Mum readily agrees. It’s a 12km (8 miles) return hike along a section of the Cooloola Great Walk.

 photo 996739_10153922632331181_4577355597064204628_n_zps4uz7rjoh.jpg

Despite the heat it’s a pretty walk. Mushrooms / toadstools force their way through the sand to stand camouflaged along the track.

 photo 12512378_10153922632276181_2524558053152496478_n_zpswobtvluz.jpg

Other fungi grow more brightly on the trees.

 photo 921417_1696293773916081_7954734614556440499_o_zps2xjmbxbc.jpg

A goanna crosses our path. These modern day dinosaurs at large and move loudly when they move. They must have few predators. This one is only small.

 photo 1934498_10153922633196181_4906015784115988732_n_zpstk5lo0yr.jpg

The banksia are in flower. They must have a long season for many spent flowers adorn the trees beside their bright yellow siblings. At night the fruit bats will again flap their wings loudly as they move from one of these nectar filled treasures to the next. At times we glimpse the sand patch in the distance. It extends to the north and south of us as we make our way along the final ridge top approach. We also see the ocean off in the distance but will not reach it today.

 photo 1454941_10153922633036181_680637909906985399_n_zpsvzsyssud.jpg

The sand patch is immense. Signs warn walkers not to meander here too much due to the heat and potential to damage the delicate ecosystem. It’d also be fairly easy to become disoriented here with the world of yellow and blue around you.

 photo 12523876_10153922632121181_6632672542021201816_n_zpsx7biw3pq.jpg

We cross the sand patch to the lookout recommended for day walkers. From here we can see south to Elanda Point where we started our adventure yesterday. There’s a lot of flat lands down there below the edge of the patch. Wallaby tracks cross our path, as do the markings of insects and reptiles. It looks like a lizard had climbed directly up one of the steep slopes. It’s quite interesting to think about this place as a home to life.

 photo 12033128_10153922633131181_8968739812928294330_n_zps1ifhw71h.jpg

We eat a snack at the lookout and rest a bit in the shade taking in the views. Then it’s time to walk back the way we came all the way back to camp, some 6km (4 miles) away.

 photo 1610078_10153922632251181_3507387063561722461_n_zpsekzvyg2i.jpg

It’s a stinking hot day so we spend some time sitting on the jetty dangling our legs in the river. Mum jumps in for a swim but I’m happy to just chill on the jetty.

 photo 12193599_10153922632091181_5101009156403023970_n_zpsopgxz1d5.jpg

 photo 12802808_10153922632056181_1368272013491189958_n_zpsld5burwc.jpg

An afternoon nap in the shade at camp follows before we return to the jetty to watch day turn to night. Dinner and an early night round out what has been a fabulous day.

4 thoughts on “Noosa River day 2: Camp 3 to Cooloola Sand Patch return (Queensland, Australia)

  1. Really beautiful photo’s of an inspiring trip Andrew. Thanks for sharing.

    Did you take these with your iPhone or another camera?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s