Well we are all back safe and sound from our adventures on Fraser Island, the biggest sand island in the world.
We arrived in Hervey Bay on Saturday night and spent the night here ready to get up bright and early on Sunday morning! We each packed daybags with everything we would need for 3 days (in some cases packed within an inch of their lives!). We were picked up at 7.45 and went to meet up with the rest of our group. The day before, we had a briefing telling us all about Fraser Island, what to do and not to do, how many people had died due to dingo-related accidents or 4x4 crashes. A lovely start to the trip we thought! The next morning we had a nice video on how to drive the 4x4s, what settings to have them in on which terrain etc.
We were shown to our vehicle, packed all the food we'd bought the day before and our bags into the back and set off to the ferry, one of the guys called Sam driving a good 20 mins in a car he'd never driven before! He did a very good job, especially reversing onto the ferry!
Once we got to Fraser it was like nothing else. Rainforest stretching out for miles with incredibly bumpy dirt track roads and some cracking puddles from the night before! We were given an itinerary from the tour company before we went so we had plenty to do each day! The first day we visited Lake McKenzie, which was absolutely gorgeous, a crystal clear freshwater lake next to a beach (well everywhere is next to a beach on a sand island!). You could swim in it without worrying about water getting in your eyes or mouth as it was incredibly pure. After that we got onto the sand highway, the main highway on Fraser which runs straight down the east coast. Quite a weird sight to see loads of 4x4s on the sand! I got my first go at driving here, hang on a second.... YES I DROVE A 4X4!!!!!!! You might guess I'm quite proud of this fact. It was an awesome experience, I got in and managed to actually make the thing go without stalling, and got up to a speed of 70kph on the sand. Such a good feeling, driving with the windows open and music blasting, and I'm sure I'll remember it for a very long time. We also visited the Maheno shipwreck on day 1 before going to our campground and pitching our tents. We had a cracking BBQ, lots of wine and a far too early night, it was an exhausting day!
On the second day we got up lovely and early to find that Harry the crazy german was already up and had the water boiling for tea, yes! We got plenty done on the second day, we climbed the headland on Indian Head, went to the Champagne Pools which are basically just little saltwater pools just inland from the sea where you can swim (you can't swim in the sea around Fraser as there are lots of sharks, but we didn't see any!). We drove to Eli Creek to have a paddle and camped again in a gorgeous campsite in the middle of the rainforest. A very noisy night's sleep due to lots of squawking birds very early in the morning! There were also howling dingoes all around though which was a pretty cool experience and definitely better to wake up to than the crows! I had a little drive on the way to the campsite on the dirt tracks, a lot harder than driving on sand and I did make the people in the back bounce up and down a few times, one in particular! Was definitely a good experience though, hopefully will gain me a few man (woman?) points somewhere down the line!
Today, we went to Lake Wabby which was also incredibly gorgeous, a deep green lake full of catfish with a tall forest on one side and an enormous sandblow on the other. We saw lots of catfish in the lake and Harry and the two French boys we were with had a swim. Afterwards we climbed up the huge sandblow back to the car, which was exhausting, walking over sand is hard work! On our way to the ferry, Harry, who insisted on walking everywhere barefoot, managed to get a stick imbedded in the bottom of his foot, not the best end to his trip! He seemed pretty unphased by it though. Some more excellent driving onto the ferry by our ferry driver Sam, and we were on our way back to Hervey Bay, where we are staying tonight!
Tomorrow we are off to a small town called 1770, where we are staying for 2 nights. Gaelle and myself seem to have gotten the bug for driving strange vehicles, so we are hoping to have a go on some choppers whilst we are there! Hope there's room on the trip, it looks very fun. Expect another update!