Wednesday, 29 September 2010

A Liitle Further North - Brisbane to Hervey Bay

After pleasant hours touching base with Sue's sister Judy, her husband Russell and their children Scott and Rachael during the time preceding bed, we both sleep extra well in our improvised digs in the spare bedroom, although the higher than usual humidity levels we will have to adapt to were evident.

In the morning, after one of Jude's usual extra healthy breakfasts, we set off and had left the confines of the Brisbane and her suburbs fairly quickly as we crossed the Gateway, slipped past the airport and were into the Glasshouse Mountains in no time flat. This collection of fifteen volcanic plugs in various stages of eroded decay, were named by Capt James Cook as he sailed north to an engagement with the Barrier Reef. Clearly seen form off shore, Captain Jim was reminded of the glass kilns of his home of Yorkshire by the shapes of the mountains. For those who have travelled south west of Gunnedah, the same effect can be had when reaching Mullaley and seeing the shapes of volcanic domes rising rapidly off the floor of the plains ... its just that these are far more dramatic and of course, linked to the Great Navigator himself.

We took in what we could without walking - my knee still in a semi-swollen and uncomfortable state post Waratahs Reunion weekend - and settled for the main lookout in the area. It was overcast but bright so definition was hard to find on the faces of these ancient, sullen children, brooding as they are in their own corners of the playground. The best part of our stop were photos of a Pretty Face Wallaby and joey. Before leaving the area, we had very ordinary coffee break, featuring very ordinary coffee. We are starting to get a sense for when it is wiser to order tea.

Pretty Face Wallaby 
We stopped shortly after so I could shoot some photos of a pineapple plantation below one of these huge, sudden mountains. Sue disappeared down the road and by the time I caught up with her, she was standing at the roadside with a freshly picked pineapple which she had charmed from a farmer who was conducting quality control on his crop as it was picked, ready for transport. Sue asked lots of questions, took some photos and would have used that little girl look and was rewarded with a free sample. Just as well she uses her charm for goodness and niceness!

On our way back to the Bruce Highway - only in Qld would a major arterial road be named Bruce - we called in at the Glasshouse Mountains Information Centre which was well resourced with people as well as information told through quality technology. Our first joint planning determined Hervey Bay as our destination for the evening and a site was booked and some SOP's agreed on. Until now, Sue had done all the planning and I just turned up but with us being well and truly on the road, it was time to be at least partially organised.

What struck us was the lack of rest stops in the first 250kms north of Brisbane. If you need relief or relief, you had to drive off the Bruce (no poofters) and into one of the many small town normally bypassed. It was one of these, Yandina, whose sporting oval played host to our lunchtime break and another of them, whose name was so easy to forget that I forgot it, which provided comfort through provision of a public toilet. Finally, Tiaro, gave us the chance to have a cup of tea (see, we are learning) and wait out an approaching storm. I wasn't driving through another wet outburst after the one near Beaudessert yesterday. Weatherzone - via my mobile phone - confirmed what our eyes told us, so we waited as the front passed through to the north of us. As a result, we drove only through showers and arrived at Hervey Bay after the tempest had spent it's fury.

We are booked in for two nights here just to do some strategic planning for the next three weeks.
After that, we start on shorter hops and some look-and-see stuff.


  1. Glad to see you are enjoying your trip so far.
    If you are travelling right up north there are many things to see on your way I was up there August 2008 on my bike trip. I also started in Harvey Bay. If following the Bruce up there , there is an alternative from Rockie to Mackay , turn off at Marlborough near the servo to go to Sarina then Mackay. Make sure you get fuel at Marlborough as the only other stop is at Loftus Creek very small place beside creek , the road was originally the highway north. Interesting road all the same. Takes you away from the traffic on the Bruce. Then to Sarina then Mackay to wherever .
    We envy you , relaxing away, now strolling on the beach or wandering through the lust rain forests that you are yet to visit. Loftus Creek is a very nice swimming place.

  2. lorraine Batterham30 September 2010 at 15:47

    Lorraine Batterham writes:
    Lucky Langstons- through you I am reliving some of my visits to favourite parts of the world.
    Have a wonderful time and travel safely.


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