Cape York - 2006

Day 30 - Cleanup!! (and plans for the Next One...)


Well, that was a great trip, and now for the clean up and maintenance that follows such an adventure - but as was said many times - this is only the recce for the real trip in 2011.

Things we would look at doing differently include:

  • Two nights at Elim Beach (if possible, book for beachside camping)
  • Book for a day dirt bike riding with Cairns Motorcycles prior to coming up - we were quite limited in our options because we were only booking three weeks in advance.
  • The CREB if it ever opens again
  • more bush camps:
    • Muttee Head, (shelters there which you can set up camp next to - some protection from rain/sun
    • Muttee Head South - two nice campsites
    • Fly Point
    • Somerset (down near the graves on the beach) (beautiful!!)
  • take our tent poles!!
  • synchronising times on cameras - when sorting 4,300 photo's from five cameras, it would be a whole lot easier if you could sort by date and time - and then delete/keep as required.
  • synchronise cameras with GPS, so that for places that you can't work out (ie each creek crossing on the OTL) you could compare with your track file

Things we would definitely do the same include:
  • A rest day at Cairns, (Cairns Coconut Caravan Resort is great for the kids)   Definitely book ahead.
  • A rest day at Weipa, (book a day fishing at Weipa with Dave Donald's boys)
  • Canopy Surfing at Daintree
  • Elim Beach.   Ask Eddy about Black Boys and spears for hunting crabs
  • The Old Telegraph Track in both directions
  • Camp at:
    • Seisia Holiday Park (for the wharf), (book for beachside camping  (with a hut - 240V, sink, and  covered area next to the tent site)
    • Punsand Bay (book ahead if in a group, otherwise you might struggle for room) - no need to book "beachside" camping as it is all in bays and pretty much equal access.
  • The five beach drive taking in Fly Point and Somerset.
  • The walk around the head to the aboriginal art at Somerset.  
  • Stop at all of Twin Falls, Eliot Falls, and Fruitbat Falls.   Self Registration available if camping at Eliot - no camping available at Fruitbat.
  • A night at the Lions Den Hotel
  • Take a full set of spare shocks

Things we would probably do the same include:
  • Lightning Ridge (do the wave pool and the artesian bore) - a good overnight stop, and decent days drive from Canberra
  • Clermont (pub for tea was great) - a good overnight stop, and decent days drive from Lightning Ridge.
  • Cape Trib:
    • Noah Beach for beach camping.   Prior registration required.
    • Cape Trib Camping Park if you are looking for an open air bar (covered) with character, pool and other facilities (note, small camping areas)
  • Archer River.   Camp by the river, or up in the camp ground - Archer burger is pretty good.   Bar at the camp ground.

Things we might not do next time:
  • Mine tour at Weipa was so-so.   Some points were interesting, but not at the cost and time taken.

Other Recommendations:
  • Andy at Cape York Spares and Repairs (Bamaga) - a bushie who knows his stuff, and talks straight.   Good repair facilities.   Be prepared to wait a few days if parts are required though - this is a problem of the remote area - Andy knows his way through the maze they call the freight system, but it still takes time.   Go here for a Timeline of Ivan's Diff Repair, to see how long it can take..
  • Fuel is available at all major and minor facilities,
  • Plastic is useable nearly everywhere, with "cash out" on EFTPOS also readily available.
  • Good shopping facilities at Bamaga, Seisia, and Weipa.
  • Coen is cheaper fuel than Archer.
  • Jardine Ferry is only 8-5, the campgrounds there (on the south bank) are nice, and the showers good.
  • The couple running the Croc Tent at Lockerbie will happily give you a map with recommendations for day trips at the Tip.  The Croc Tent is on the main Punsand Road so you will go past it if going to either Punsand Bay or the Tip from Bamaga/Seisia/Loyalty Beach.
  • Boat and Fishing Tours:
    • Weipa - Dan and Josh from Dave Donald SportFishing
    • Punsand Bay - Bat (Sunset Tour is lovely)
    • Seisia - Dan from John Charlton SportFishing
  • The turnoff to Roaring Meg Falls isn't where it is shown on the Hema map - it is right at the north gate to the Creb Track, some seven kilometres away from where you would be otherwise looking.