Sean Mc on Skynet

Bowen to Airlie Beach

We got to Bowen the previous night and eventually found somewhere to stay for the night, all the hostels in the town were full and the campsites were pricey, and to crown it all off... there was nothing to do in the town. So why did we stop here, I hear you ask? It was on the map, we were tired and needed somewhere to sleep. Bearing that in mind we didn't waste any time in getting going the next morning.

We drove to Airly beach to enquire about going sailing in the Whitsunday's for a few days.

We'd been told it was "fantastic, out of this world" etc. We didn't go. We'd have been on a sail boat for 3 days and doing some snorkelling, which we'd done plenty of already. On a sail boat for 3 days sounds like fun but you don't even get to do any of the sailing stuff yourself, you just lie out on deck and roast like a piece of meat, not for us thank you very much, we'd rather be doing active stuff. We did book ourselves onto a tour to Fraser Island though so it wasn't a complete waste of a stop, and had lunch and went for a swim. They have a manmade lagoon right in the town where you can swim for free. When they call it a lagoon they really mean an outdoor swimming pool but it's good nonetheless.

With no further reason to hang around Airlie Beach we kept driving in search of more activity. We somehow stumbled across a place called the Finch Hatton gorge, I'm not sure how we managed to 'stumble' across it, given that it's about 40km from the main highway and down about 10km of unsealed dirt track but we did. Wow, was it worth it! When we arrived there were only 2 other cars in the carpark so we knew it was going to be quiet. We spent about 2 1/2 hours walking through the rainforest up to some waterfalls. At the base of the second one was a pool where we were told we could go for a swim. It was a hot humid day and we were after walking uphill for the last 80 minutes so a refreshing swim was just what we needed. Swimming shorts on and into the picturesque pool... oh s**t it's freezing, this wasn't in the brochure. I think I stayed in just about long enough to be able to coherently say "it's freezing". After I had warmed up on the bank I did go back in for a proper swim, it wasn't as bad this time, I would even say it was super refreshing and well worth it.

Back at the car we were hungry after the walking and swimming so we opted for lunch. Some of the wildlife in these parts are very very cheeky. We had the boot door (trunk for you Americans) open and were sitting at the boot munching our food when along comes a bird looking for food, a so called wild bird sitting less that 2foot from us! The picture show's it happily sitting on the open door of the car, he wasn't alone either, all of his buddies were watching to see how he got on before joining him.

Onwards to McKay, and this time we'd phoned ahead to book our accomodation so no worries.

posted by SeanMc @ 5:41 AM,


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