Noosa Head Walk

Day Four: Sunday

After some family time in the morning Heather, Roland and I walked the coastal leg of the Noosa Head Coastal Track. Dave dropped us at Noosa National Park and I took a photo of Harrold, the koala killed by a dog – poor little fellow, didn’t stand a chance. Someone had put a bough of gum leaves in his paw.

Harrold, killed by a dog

A little further on we saw a live koala up a gum tree, fast asleep (koalas spend much of their time asleep)

koala up a gum tree

So, on one side a sleepy koala and on the other side the roaring ocean. Steep tracks lead down to the rocky shore at this point and there are many surfers on the track – coming and going.

Casuarina trees line the track

For most of the track (5.4kms) I trailed behind Heather and Roland – both of whom are fast walkers. In places the track was very rough and I took my time so that I didn’t fall. Also, there was so much to look at and I didn’t want to miss a thing.

Heather & Roland ahead!

Along the track there are places where the water is seeping through the surface. I saw a young man walking the track, barefoot, and he stepped right onto one of these patches and his foot sank right down into the mud. I had to laugh as it looked as though he had a shiny ankle boot on one foot!

Quite far into the walk we came to Hell’s Gates, an awesome feature where the ocean channels into a narrow chasm. The sides are steep and rocky and there are no fences to stop people approaching the edges, only a couple of warning signs like these.


I went as close to the edge as I dared (not very close) to take a couple of photos.

Hell’s Gates

Hell’s Gates & Alexandria Beach in the background.

Alexandria Beach, politely known as as a *Clothes Optional* beach is a beautiful spot. Apparently very dangerous to swim although that didn’t seem to worry the au naturale people on the beach and in the ocean. The ocean was very rough that day and although I was hot and ready for a swim, I wasn’t game to get naked and swim – too much sand swirling around in the water for my comfort. So I kept my clothes on and took my shoes off for the hike along the beach. I didn’t take any photos either, just this one from the track way above the beach.

Alexandria Beach

Dave met us at the far end of the beach, he had driven around so that we wouldn’t have to complete the full round trip through the inland track; also because there was absolutely no parking available at Noosa where we started the trek.

The track was much rougher from here on, steep and rocky with some quite sheer drops. In one place there was a chain which was helpful and elsewhere the trees provided a handy support. I was excited to hear a Whip Bird – the first time I’ve heard one in the wild (we don’t get them here in Western Australia). I have been practising the call ever since. I can get the first bit – the whistle – but the actual cracking sound is more difficult. I think the others were heartily sick of me making these whistling, cracking sounds all the way down to Sunshine Beach.

Beautiful Sunshine Beach! The breakers rolling in reminded me of the beach at Muizenberg in the Cape Peninsula (South Africa). I’d say this is one of the most beautiful beaches I’ve ever seen

Sunshine Beach

The walk had taken rather longer than planned – possibly because of my *slow/slower* pace! Anyhoo, we ended up in a delightful restaurant and hoed into a cold beer! Oh my did that taste good. Beer is not my usual choice of drink but this Boag’s was nectar. A late lunch of tapas and great company put the finishing touches to an amazing, wonderful walk.

On the way back to Mooloolaba Heather suggested we climb Mount Coolum – seeing as it is *only* 200 or 300m high. While I would like to do that one day, this was not the day! In fact I was pretty tired by this time … have to remember, I’m pushing up to the high end of the 60s now.

Noosa Head Walk

Queensland visit continued

OK, here goes with filling in some of the gaps. Thanks for your feedback on Facebook!

Thanks Heather for reminding me – Tibouchina – that’s the brilliant purple tree we saw in Maleny and all around the Sunshine Coast. Here’s another photo – I missed out on an avenue of these beautiful trees owing to built-in tortoise syndrome (two speeds, me. Slow and slower).


Here’s a photo I took of Heather and Jess as part of the team organising the venue at Tranquil Park. It looks chaotic but the end result was lovely. The colour theme was moss green, cream and rich brown.

Heather & Jess

My part in all this was to find the end of the sticky tape for Jenny, Jess’s mother. Oh, and pick up the rubbish! Also, to nod sagely when Heather explained to me what she was doing with the technology side of things.

While we were busy in Maleny, Roland spent time with Jacob, Dave’s son; some of which entailed taking the dogs for a walk. We (Roland & I) were quite smitten with Panda and Rattoes.

Panda & Rattoes

Not in their first flush of youth, these dear little girls are so game. They did remind me of Stella although they are much more obedient and well-behaved than she was. I realised how much I miss walking the dog – although walking still features in my life. The bright side is that we go much faster now and don’t have to pick up poo. I wish other people picked up after their dogs. It seems to me that the bigger the dog (and the bigger the poo) the less likely it is to be picked up. Just saying.

Will continue with more about Eumundi Markets and the wedding.

Queensland visit continued

Sandgropers in Queensland

In one weekend on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Roland and I fitted in a month’s worth of fun and adventure thanks to my niece Heather and her husband Dave. 

The main reason for our visit was the wedding of Robin (Heather’s son) to Jessica. Roland and I were there to represent Heather’s side of the family because, for various reasons (mainly the tyranny of distance) we were the only ones who could make the trip. Indeed, I was representing my sister Win, Robin’s Nana, who lives in South Africa.

Day One: We flew in from Perth late afternoon on Thursday. A long flight but some wonderful scenery as we flew over central Australia. 

Lake Eyre

After a we arrived in Brisbane (late) we waited for Heather’s husband Dave who was flying in from the mines. Never one to waste a minute, Heather took us to a nearby shopping mall and we stocked up on groceries and had a welcome coffee.

Roland is known to complain about the traffic here in Perth but he was absolutely amazed by the volume of traffic in Brisbane! The commute from the airport back to Heather’s home near Mooloolaba was an eye-opener for both of us. I was so relieved we hadn’t hired a car otherwise we’d still be driving around Brisbane Airport! My sense of direction is non-existent and I’ve never quite mastered *left* and *right*; in fact neither of us managed to get our bearings the whole time we were there.

Day Two: In a household of early risers (must run in the family) Heather and I were ready for Yoga class in Mooloolaba. The joy of attending a class – even with mirrors in the studio – is wonderful. It is one of my *rules* never to pass up the chance of participating in a Yoga class and this one was a treat. 

In the afternoon Heather and I drove up to Maleny in Robin’s ute to help with the preparation for the wedding. Well, I was wearing shorts and a T and soon discovered that at that altitude the weather was a lot cooler than on the coast! Heather was busy with the technology, being a self-confessed geek, and I wandered around getting in the way most of the time but lending a hand where I could. Eventually, Jess’s mum found a tablecloth for me to wrap around myself, shroud-like, to keep warm. The views from Tranquil Park (the wedding venue) are superb.

View from Tranquil Park

Day Three: Early start and off to Eumundi to the Markets. What an amazing place; so many stalls and so creative. I bought presents for Rosie and Lily, not the usual T shirts but unusual gifts – which turned out to be popular choices when we got back to Fremantle and gave them to the girls. 

In the afternoon we drove up to Maleny for the wedding. First the ceremony which was lovely. Jess looked stunning in a dress she designed herself and her bridesmaids were so beautiful. Robin looked so handsome and the proceeding went on without a hitch. Yes, a few tears were shed but that is what happens at weddings!

Heather had the music and Powerpoint well organised even though the equipment at the venue came out of the ark. 

In the interval between ceremony and reception we went through to Maleny Cheese and sampled some delicious cheeses. Montville was next on the agenda and we stopped in at the Clock shop. I wish I’d bought the yodelling marmoset. Anyhoo, it was very impressive. We saw the water wheel. 

Somewhere in here I found the time to photograph the purple trees that abound in the area. I can’t remember what they are called although Heather told me about six times.

The reception was great fun and my speech (speaking on behalf of my sister Win) went OK. It is a boon not to be nervous about speaking publicly; I guess because of long-time teaching and lecturing.

I’ll continue this later because one of the highlights of the trip is still to come.

Sandgropers in Queensland