Recently the Bundaberg Four Wheel Drive Club attended its annual K’Gari – Fraser Island – December Trip.
Fraser Island, now known as “K’Gari” which means Paradise in the Butchulla people’s language, is the largest sand island in the world.
Our group headed to the Waddy Point campground to base ourselves for two weeks of exploring, fishing and relaxing.
The inland tracks on the lower end of the island had had some rain so travel was a bit easier, yet the top end had not seen the torrential downpours we received so towing in the dry conditions was a bit more challenging.
Many of the areas we travelled through had been impacted by the fires twelve months ago, and a lot of new growth has sprouted. The island is slowly recovering.
Our time on the island was spent checking out the tourist sights of the island, with Wathumba Creek, Ocean Lake, Champaign Pools, and Indian Head being the standouts.
The trip to the lighthouse needs to be timed with the tides as recent erosion from the weather means you must make your way around the vegetation that has been washed onto the beach.
Postans Camp, a leftover site from the logging days on the island is a spot most don’t see, but its worth the drive and walk to see what’s left of an industry that thrived on the island before being shut down to preserve the majestic trees.
Travel on the island can be hard on vehicles and this trip had a few problems for some.
Broken suspension pieces, electronic sensors making vehicles go into limp mode and overheating problems meant some bush mechanic skills came into play.
Lucky for us we had people coming over mid-trip that could bring parts to fix some problems, while other vehicles had to make their way back to the barge as best they could to get back to the mainland where a trip on the tilt tray truck brought them home.
The obligatory stop at the Maheno Shipwreck for a group shot and Eli Creek and Lake McKenzie for a swim in the crystal-clear waters topped off a trip that will be talked about for years to come.
People ask why we keep going back to the same place each year? It is because every visit has a new crowd to show what the island has to offer, the changes from year to year show how nature bounces back from wild weather and fires.
Catching beach worms seems to be the most frustrating pastime of all, as they are right in front of you but so hard to grab.
Many of the new trippers to the island spend hours upon hours trying to catch the illusive creatures, and it entertains us watching them try.
As a club our next visit to the island will be in May when we participate in the 4WDQLD clean-up, a time to give back to the iconic attraction.
– Brad Praed
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