(30 June – 3 July 2010)
Now officially in the tropics as we pass the Tropic Marker (23º 26’ 30”), we flit through Rockhampton en route to the coast – our destination for the next few days.
Kinka Beach is one of the many beaches to the south of Yeppoon, with Zilzie Bay the south-most – all just a leisurely 45-60min drive from Rockhampton. The coastline is picturesque with the Keppel Islands and others offshore. The holiday park we stay at is like God’s waiting room as we must be just one of two or three families here – all other residents are retired, mostly from the south (NSW, Victoria, SA) escaping the colder winter for 2-3months in their superannuated 4WDs and flash caravans with all mod-cons (Foxtel anyone?).
We venture north into Byfield with the state forest on the left and the national park on the right – a superb place for forest walks and bush camping – alas for us, it’s just a leisurely afternoon drive. On return we stop in Yeppoon for a sugar refuel – ice cream for the tribe and coffee and cake for M and me.
The Singing Ship sculpture-tribute-monument to Captain James Cook is an interesting piece of work – iron pipes, musically tuned play wistful tunes as the seabreeze breathes through – unfortunately, in filming the sculpture, I had no windsock to make a clean recording of the music so all I got was the hiss of the wind on the mike.
My birthday – and nothing better than a birthday on holiday. We celebrate with a damn fine cooked brekkie, adorned with candles. The cake comes later. We spend a leisurely day pottering about in overcast conditions – Saffiya wants to buy me a hat as a pressie so we head to the shops. We find a hat that Saffiya approves of and I like, but alas they do not have my size. The promise that there will be a hat bought in another town.
Heading off from the Cap Coast, we stop at the Capricorn Caves – and discover that while impressive as a ‘dry-cave’ system, it pales in comparison with the likes of Jenolan, Buchan or Yarrangobilly Caves – all southern ‘wet-cave’ systems. One of the fascinating things about the Capricorn Caves is the apparent amount of guano that had been excavated from the caves and estimated amount left (something like 30 metres deep!) – which make the floor upon we walk.