Piece of cake

When we were asking questions from people who had done the OTT before we heard comments like it’s a piece of cake, no worries, you will be right just take it easy. Then these same people would list the damage done to 4wd and trailer as if it was some sort of honour badge. Also it is one thing to come up in a 4wd another doing it with a trailer in tow. It is challenging, some areas are more difficult than others. It can be heart pumping action crossing a creek, the number of onlookers is evidence of that, the entertainment for the day. It’s thrilling, a real rush when you make a difficult crossing. It’s certainly not a piece of cake which is why all the 4wdrivers come back year after year, it’s one of the most challenging, fun, adventurous tracks with different levels of difficultly on nearly every crossing that brings people back time and time again. We will be back 🙂

Nolans-deep

Opps

Splash

Fun

Crossing-Scrubby-Creek-1

And of course you can’t go past the amazing water falls.

Elliot-Falls-1

Twin-Falls-01

Fruitbat-Falls 1

Saucepan 1

Map of our whole trip some 7000 odd kms. It’s a long way to the top.

Old Coach Road Videos

This is a 3 part video on the Old Coach Road; it starts at Little Laura Creek where the Old Coach Roach really starts. The video camera was secured on the side of the camping trailer, in future we will endeavour to move the camera around to other positions, doesn’t show how rough the track really was. We live and learn, this is our first time of videoing and editing clips, we have learnt a lot along the way and learn the program to edit the videos. We travelled solo, Chris did the driving, I navigated him around the difficult bits and took photos. Having the Go Pro fixed onto the trailer was like an extra pair of hands.

You need to make sure you have full recovery gear with you and preferably travel with another vehicle. We did do this track alone but we had full recovery gear, satellite phone and friends and family knew when to expect us out of this area.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Some other video clips on the Old Coach Road can be found at the YouTube Channel Misadventure TV

The Bend, Coen

2/8/13 – It was a peaceful but warm night, we had all the windows on the trailer open so woke with the birds.

Plan today is to drop into Moreton Telegraph Station that we missed coming up and then head to The Bend back at Coen for the night. Hopefully get in there early arvo and have a swim in the creek and get a good spot 🙂

We had a quick morning tea at Bramwell Junction before moving on to Moreton Telegraph Station. As we came into the station someone stopped us to let us know our kitchen door was open. We travelled all the way up the OTT no problems get back onto corrugated roads and we suffer sudden lock death syndrome. The latching mechanism on the lock on the kitchen door had broken off and the door was swinging open. Red dust had gone through all of the kitchen and all through the pantry grrrrr. Chris was able to take a lock of the door at the other end of the kitchen that we don’t open very much and switch the lock out and then Mac Guyver the other door closed with duct tape. Big clean up coming up at the Bend. It could have been much worse, we could have lost the whole door.

Dust-1

After the repair we had a look through the display at the station. Several boards with information about the floods, birds, the Telegraph Line etc. worth stopping in for a look and walking on some green grass.

Moreton-Telegraph-Station Moreton-Telegraph-Station-1 Moreton-Telegraph-Station-2 Moreton-Telegraph-Station-displeay-boards

We arrived at The Bend just after 2pm, found a great spot overlooking the river and had a late lunch before setting up. After setting up, then came the big clean up of emptying everything out of the kitchen and pantry, wiping and literally hosing the dust off. Not a fun job that took many hours in the heat of the day. Eventually we were done and then had a quick dip to get the red dust off us. * Update –  Aussie Swag no longer use the same locks, they have changed over to another brand that look like they are stronger. We have replaced all 6 locks on the trailer with the new ones. Scott from Aussie Swag, looked after us and gave us a good deal 🙂

Dust Wash-Me

It was a clear night, lots of stars and also a cool night, coolest one we have had for a while.

Click on the link above for a larger version in Google Maps of the days travels.

Thursday Island

31/7/13 – Up early to be in Seisa for 7.30am ready for the boat trip to the Island. We went on the Peddlers boat which apparently was only 6 mths old. Trip takes just over an hour and was a pretty smooth ride going over and was also fairly full. We were divided into 2 groups, some with pink stickers others with green stickers to show which bus time tour you were on. As it turned out all the pink ones were the ones who were doing the 2 island tour, which included Horn island, had the morning run at 9.30am. We were doing the 11.15am one which gave us time to look around the town area.

Thursday-Island Thursday-Island-turtles

There were more shops here than we have seen in over a week, but still not a lot. Petrol was cheaper here than at Seisa. Place was clean and the people friendly giving you big smiles and waves. The place has a big history of pearl trade and diving but there isn’t a lot we saw for sale.

The bus tour lasts for around 1.5hrs in an air conditioned bus 🙂 the driver gives a bit of a history lesson about the place as he drives around the island before we went to Green Hill Fort. Green Hill Fort was built as part of Australia’s defence to protect Thursday Island and Australia from the north. It was eventually decommissioned in 1927. Green Hill is a small grassy hill at the western end of Thursday Island. There are some amazing views to be had up here.

View-at-Green-Hill-Fort

Green-Hill-Fort Green-Hill-Fort-2 Green-Hill-Fort-3 Stick-them-up

Underground are several buildings with many displays and a museum. It was very interesting and well worth stopping to explore the fort.

Green-Hill-Fort-1 Green-Hill-Fort-Map

Pearl Diving was very big in the past. Divers risked their lives every time they went down to look for pearls. On board the boat we watched a short movie on the diving history of the area, it was informative and moving.

Thursday-Island-Diving-Suit

Next stop was the cemetery where many of the early pearl divers are buried, including a memorial to the Japanese. Hard way to earn a living.

Japanese-Memorial Japanese-Pear-Divers-graves

We had an hour or so to fill in after the tour so had lunch, checked out the air conditioned arts and cultural centre, well worth a look. Another walk down the street, found the laundry that sold Chinese food.

Back to the boat with a rough trip home as the water was choppy, with some large swells.

We finally got a bit of a sunset. Yeah.

Loyality-Beach-Sunset


Click on the link above for a larger version in Google Maps of the days travels.

The Tip of Cape York

30/7/13 – We woke to blue skies, no wind and an amazing view that is so hard to take, trip up to the tip today and a look around the area.

Loyality-Beach

The roads are here are still mostly dirt. We took a shortcut to the main road that leads to the tip. First stop along the way was the Croc Tent. Stocks were a bit low so it was a little disappointing but as we found out it is the only place in the area that you can buy things that don’t have someone’s name all over them. We also got a free map of the area.

Croc Croc-Tent

The road from there has dips, ruts, creek crossing and some muddy holes. Once we got there the car park was pretty full. We did a quick look at the beach before climbing the rocks to the tip takes about 15 mins. It was hot and breezy. We had the place to ourselves for 5 mins and set the camera up on the rocks with the timer for some photos. Was awesome to be there and was the main focus of this trip. There are great views, out to the islands over the blue water, with a dolphin frolicking in the water.

Cape-View Cape-York

We-made-it

We walked back via the beach route, which we found easier and quicker.

Beach-at-the-Cape

Next we drove to Somerset which has historical significant to the people in this area but not a lot there now. We went down to the beach for lunch, there is also a camping are there and toilets that are not maintained, there were very dirty.

Somerset Somerset-Wall

After chatting with some people over lunch we went to find the WW2 plane wrecks. First one we found was the WW2 Beaufort Bomber.

Bristol-Beaufort-Mark-VIII Bristol-Beaufort-Mark-VIII-1 Bristol-Beaufort-Mark-VIII-2 Bristol-Beaufort-Mark-VIII-3

Next was the WW2 DC3 wreck. Both planes have fences around them and memorials to the crews who died in the plane crashes.

DC-3-Aircraft DC-3-Aircraft-1 DC-3-Aircraft-2 DC-3-Aircraft-3 DC-3-Aircraft-4

The third plane wreck has now been removed.

We then took a drive in to Seisa. Have to save we didn’t take to it, not a lot there. From what we could see we thought the park here looked better, but we have also heard other people say it’s really nice.

Click on the link above for a larger version in Google Maps of the days travels.

Beautiful Breathtaking Waterfalls

Some videos of the amazing waterfalls and swimming areas in the Jardine River National Park. We really loved our time here and look forward to going back and spending a week in the National Park.

Eliot Falls

Twin Falls

The Saucepan

Fruit Bat Falls

Falls falls beautiful falls

28/7/13 – We woke to blue skies and for a short time thought we would have a nice sunny day. Not to be, by the time we got to Twin Falls with the cameras by 8am the skies were turning grey again.

Twin-Falls Twin-Falls-01

We pretty well had the place to ourselves up to lunch. We spent the day taking photos and going for a swim in between the drizzle of rain.

Elliot-Falls Elliot-Falls-1 Elliot-Falls-2 Elliot-Falls-3

Eliot Falls, great to photograph not too sure about swimming in there.

Saucepan 1 Saucepan

The Saucepan, we had great fun swimming and exploring all the little pools and rocks. The water was very clear.

The Rugged Cape York

Well we are off on another adventure, to the Tip of Australia, Cape York, straight up the Old Telegraph Track. This has been a long term dream to travel to the Cape and we are finally doing it 🙂 We are all packed, hooked up and raring to go. Head off as soon as Chris comes home from work tonight. The idea is to get a few km’s under our belt tonight as we have a long way to go. Then the next few days will be just driving. We want to get to Mt Molloy area as quick as we can with our journey really starting from there.

Ready-to-go

We have 4 weeks all up, which we thought would be enough but after looking at the map, listening to people’s suggestions of places to visit and watching many DVD’s we are now thinking 4 weeks might not be enough. Oh well will just have to do it again another time 🙂 Weipa, Vrilya point, Seisa, day trip to Thursday Island, few nights at Elliot Falls, Fruit Bat Falls, and all the OTT has to offer. Lakefield National Park and I’m sure a few other places are all in the plan. We are also considering doing the Old Coach Road and visiting the old gold town of Maytown, but this really depends on time.

We have done a few more mods to the Ute, front and rear diff locks, airbags and on board compressor with a 4l air tank. Chris installed all the switches and air bits himself, the guys at ARB were very impressed with his work. We also bought a water bra/blind for the water crossing’s and with full recovery gear, winches etc. we shouldn’t have any issues. Least we know there will be plenty of other people up the Cape if we do get stuck, great the way we can all help each other out, we will also do the same for anyone else.

Switches

All the switches installed near the gear stick, easy to get to and operate.

Air-tank-and-bits

4 lt air tank, gauge sensors, airbag solenoids, diff locker solenoids, manifold, filter, etc. all installed under a flip up lid, so everything is hidden and kept clean and protected in the cabin of the Ute. Compressor is installed in the section below the air tank, all easy to get to.

The idea of the airbags is they will have very little air in them when we are travelling but if we need a bit more off a lift on the back end on any creek crossing we can give ourselves a bit more clearance. Also we can pump them up to level us at overnight stops and not have to unhook 🙂

Not sure how much internet reception we will have and it can be hard to do a lot of posting when we are on the move but we will certainly fully update our site when we are home. We have setup a Facebook page, for quick updates of where we are, what we are doing etc which should be easier on the road, so why not follow us.