TUESDAY 29 OCTOBER TO WEDNESDAY 6 NOVEMBER BUCASIA BEACH
The caravan park was an older one, with some permanent residents, in a very pleasant location. The road to the park was a narrow one, with wide green grass verges and lots of trees. it ended at a small headland by Eimeo Creek inlet, so there was very little passing traffic.
I found it most enjoyable to walk along the road to a shop where I could get papers and basic items. The beach was also pleasant walking.
There were lots of plumed whistling ducks making themselves at home in the park, and soon around our site.
We did do some exploring in our time here, and also made a couple of brief forays into the main shops in Mackay. It was always lovely, though, to return to our beachfront park. A diesel refill cost 84cpl.
One day, we drove out to Finch Hatton, to the west of Mackay. The road through the flat, sugar cane country of the Pioneer River valley, was really scenic, with the Great Dividing Range looming steadily closer, and the valley sides eventually closing in.
We decided to go up the Range, to Eungella, before visiting Finch Hatton Gorge, at the base of the Range, on the way back. If we did not have time for that on the same day, we could always come out again another day, without having to drive up the Range again.
The road up the Range climbed steadily. It featured some impressive roadside drops, signs warning of possible falling rocks, and some very sharp hairpin bends. No way would we ever contemplate bringing the van up here!
At the top of the Range was the small village of Eungella; we continued past this to the Eungella National Park. Here, we walked a circuit, taking in some of the rainforest for which the area was noted, and the Sky Window – a lookout point that gave an awesome vista down the Pioneer Valley.
It was cooler up the top, so walking in the forest was reasonably comfortable. Even this late in the dry season, there were flowing streams.
After a careful descent back down the Range, we deviated to The Finch Hatton Gorge area. It was hot here, and there was very little water in the creek, so we did not walk far, but in our meanderings did spot a new bird – the Eungella honey eater, which is only found in a small area around here. That was a rewarding find.
Another day, just for something to do, we drove out the Peak Downs Highway. This took a far easier route up the Range, with only a couple of tight bends. We went as far as the township of Copabella, noting that there looked to be some mining activity in that area. Retraced our way back to Mackay.
We also did some exploring of back roads closer to Mackay, finding the farming country and little valleys interesting. I noted that some of the names here replicated the classical ones found in Tasmania – Mt Ossa, Mt Pelion, Mt Jukes.
Drove out to Cape Hillsborough National Park and walked on the beach there. We liked the caravan park there, and noted it for a possible future visit.
As the month ticked over into November, and we had not heard about work, eventually phoned the NAP person, and were told to report for work at Giru on Friday 8th. That provided us with some certainty about what we would be doing next.
Refuelled Truck for the drive north – still 84cpl.
It was good to end this period of rather being in limbo, although the stay at Bucasia Beach was really quite an enjoyable one.