Trip Diary

08-2012 Peel Island (An Ekka tradition)
08-2012 Moreton Island
07-2012 Rocky Point
06-2012 Blakesleys
06-2012 The Bedroom
05-2012 Breakfast on Karragarra
05-2012 St Helena
05-2012 Perigee Bedroom
02-2012 Queen Mary II
02-2012 Mud Island
11-2011 St Helena
11-2011 Shorncliffe to Redcliffe
10-2011 Weinam Ck to Dunwich
10-2011 Peel Island
10-2011 Breakfast on Karragarra
10-2011 St Helena and Green Island
09-2011 Wivenhoe Dam
08-2011 Fraser Island
08-2011 Canaipa Passage
08-2011 Karragarra
08-2011 Stradbroke Island
07-2011 St Helena
07-2011 So long, and thanks for all the fish.
05-2011 Green Island
05-2011 Wivenhoe Dam
04-2011 Upper Noosa River Weekend
04-2011 Easter at Woodgate
04-2011 Mud Island
04-2011 Karragarra for Breakfast
02-2011 Bongaree
02-2011 St Helena
01-2011 Weinam Ck to Blakesleys
10-2010 Moore to Blackbutt Rail Trail
10-2010 Whitsundays
09-2010 Mud Island
09-2010 Redcliffe
09-2010 Girraween
08-2010 Upper Noosa River
08-2010 Potts Point
08-2010 Peel Island
08-2010 Gateway to City Bike Ride
08-2010 Mud Island
07-2010 Blakesleys Afternoon Paddle
07-2010 Kedron Brook to Scaborough (and return)
04-2010 Colmslie Beach
04-2010 Brighton Park
01-2010 Nundah Creek
01-2010 Blakesleys
01-2010 Upper Noosa River (with a difference)
01-2010 New Year Paddle
12-2009 Potts Point
08-2009 Raby Bay to Peel Island
08-2009 Wynnum Creek to King Island
07-2009 Sandgate to Redcliffe
05-2009 St Helena
04-2009 Wellington Point to Peel
04-2009 Breakfast on Karragarra
03-2009 King Island
03-2009 Mission Point
03-2009 Mud Island
01-2009 Morning Tea at The Pin
01-2009 Circumnavigate Macleay Island
01-2009 New Year Recovery Paddle
12-2008 Caniapa
12-2008 Pine Rivers
11-2008 Coochie Night Paddle
10-2008 Breakfast at Karragarra
10-2008 Girraween
10-2008 Coomera Falls Circuit
09-2008 Hinchinbrook Island
09-2008 Manly Harbour Festival
09-2008 Linville to Blackbutt Rail Trail
08-2008 Weekend at Blakesleys
08-2008 Old Woman Island
08-2008 Circumnavigate Macleay Island
07-2008 Upper Noosa River
07-2008 Weinam Creek to Dunwich
06-2008 Scarborough to Bongaree
06-2008 Wellington Pt to St Helena
06-2008 North Stradbroke Jazz Weekend
05-2008 Point O'Halloran to Blakesleys
04-2008 Upper Noosa River
04-2008 Aquatic Paradise to St Helena Is
04-2008 Eprapah Creek
03-2008 Paradise Point to Moreton Island
03-2008 Wynnum Ck to Tangalooma Point
03-2008 Amity Point weekend
03-2008 Bremer River
03-2008 Brisbane River - Gregors Ck to Barneys Rocks
02-2008 Play Day - Coochie Mudlo
02-2008 World Wetlands Day Paddle
02-2008 Brisbane River night paddle
01-2008 Australia Day Week
01-2008 Blakesleys 3/4 Moon Paddle
01-2008 Shorncliffe to Nudgee
01-2008 Brisbane River - Barneys Rocks to O'Sheas Crossing
12-2007 Raby Bay to One Mile via Blakesleys and Potts Point
12-2007 Diamond Head to Tipplers
12-2007 Wynnum Ck to Green and St Helena Islands
11-2007 Bike Ride Bay Islands
11-2007 Tingalpa Creek
10-2007 Potts Point Night Paddle
10-2007 Return to Gilligans Island
10-2007 Salt Water Creek and Coomera River
09-2007 Elimbah Creek
09-2007 Scarborough to Caboolture River
09-2007 Fraser Island Whale Watching
09-2007 Circumnavigate Russell Island
08-2007 Pine Rivers Night Paddle
08-2007 Linville to Blackbutt Rail Trail
08-2007 Brisbane River City Reach
08-2007 Peel Island
08-2007 Brisbane River
08-2007 Green Island Day Trip
07-2007 Pine Rivers Night Paddle
07-2007 Mooloolah River
07-2007 USS Kitty Hawk in Brisbane River
06-2007 Black Tie on Peel Island
05-2007 Harrys Hut Camping Weekend
04-2007 Theodolite Creek
04-2007 Upper Burrum River
04-2007 Circumnavigate Big Woody
04-2007 Walkers Point to Toogum
03-2007 Boat Passage to Big Sandhills
12-2006 Woodgate to Mon Repos
10-2006 Fraser Island Whale Watching
04-2005 Keppel Islands
12-2004 Fraser Island
10-2004 Munna Point Camping Weekend
10-2004 Mooloolaba to Maroochydore
09-2004 Coochie Mudlo Island
08-2004 Karragarra Island
07-2004 Wellington Point to St Helena Island
06-2004 Noosa River Camping Weekend
05-2004 Brisbane River Night Paddle
04-2004 Budds Beach to Moreton Island
10-2003 Bulwer to Tangalooma
05-2003 Eatonsville to Harwood Island


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Adventurer Anthony Malloch

Wivenhoe Dam
Date: 11-09-2011
It was a lean, mean, clean weekend. The redclaw pickings were lean. The SW wind mean and the amenities fantastically clean.

We arrived after dark and after the storm Phil & Fay had seen out in the comfort of their car and Ray in the shelter of the princess tent. The ground was damp and Ray suggested that the process of us putting up our tent was a spectator sport, one which became more interesting with the degree of difficulty with which it was achieved. He fended of any offers of help with the knowledge that these ran the very real risk of ripping the fabric of the tent and maybe more. Sniping remarks from the peanut gallery (now imbued with confidence of a few reds) agreed that the process of erecting this mere hoop frame tent took far more effort than that required for their McMansions. The SW ramped up and had all scuttling for shelter, most of which flapped like crazy all night bringing little sleep. At least it didn't rain.

Phil's voiced ambition to be up at day break to check the pots was left to the birds. Not that there were that many - even the crows had left. The SW continued to howl over the hill and no one was venturing out. Even those mad keen fishermen who were camping at Logan Inlet for the Wivenhoe Kayak Fishing Convention were no where in sight. After a slow breakfast, a decent slug of coffee it was sailing across the lake to see what delicacy had ventured into Ray's pots. Not much as it turned out. It was a pretty lean harvest, enough to given Irena a taste but not much more.

We had the opportunity to try out Rosco's new Southern Raider Expedition - a high volume boat with the hull of a Southern Raider. It paddled well in a straight line without a rudder and surfed beautifully with a following swell. While I had difficulty turning into the wind, this means little as I am not one of those clever people who will flop a boat over and edge a turn. The boat has a luxuriously padded slung seat, however after years of confinement in my old Artic Raider, I did feel a bit lost in the cockpit. I also missed the foot bar and rudder control set up (this is optional) as it allows me to paddle with my feet together, or with feet to the side whilst clinging desperately to the inside of the hull with my legs. Given that I hardly know what a bracing stroke is (the Artic Raider is so stable that this skill is seldom asked for) I am not in a good position to pass a useful comment aside to say that this boat is probably more suited to someone bigger than me.

Kayakers of the fishing disposition have an inordinate amount of money to spend. Seems they could do well with an exchange of some of that money for skills possessed by other kayakers. We watched with interest as the supercharged rescue boat ploughed through the chop and returned with a Caninghi in tow. Unfortunately it flipped with only 300m to go. The Caninghi was left listing while the chop disembowelled it of an amazing array of gear from muesli bars to fishing lures. During the drama we watched a couple have their own little life moment attempting to pitch a tent. The SW was intent on flattening the hoop frame and turning the fly into a sail. It was clear that this tent was not going to withstand the caning it was receiving, a caning which was forecast to get worse. We invited them to change allegiance, cross the road and take a flat area on our site. In fact tent pitching had become a pretty amazing process - far more spectacular than our Friday night affair.

After collecting the Caninghi's contents we finally headed into Fernvale for a bakery lunch, some thin sliced white bread for redclaw sandwiches and a visit to Woolworths for some mayonnaise I had forgotten for the famous red claw sandwich. When we got back we decided to get out on the water. The decision was to turn into it and get the grind done first. Once on the water the wind started to stall so we called in to have a look at what was on show at the pavilion. Here we saw displays of live native and noxious fish, learned more about how to identify a tailapia vs a perch and hooked the enthusiastic interest of someone who took one look at us and declared "sea kayakers". It later turned out that the assumption was easy as he thought the fishing kayakers would not be stupid enough to be out there. His name was Trevor and after a brief conversation - BINGO - I pinned him as being the legendary Trevor Gunther. We had heard about Trevor many years ago, he was the guy who did mad stuff, certainly not a domestic sea kayaker. He was riveted by the Marlin and positively itching to have a paddle, so Mark dropped his skirt and Trevor was off. In the meantime we watched a Hobie Adventure Island kayak with two outriggers and an oversized sail play around in the shelter of the bay.

Eventually the wind started to wind up and we thought it time to head off, especially if we were to relocate the pots before dark. A brief bounce out then it was turn for a run with the wind and chop. I was not game to put up the sail - there was a possibility that I would have got more than I bargained for, although both Graeme and Mark were expecting a yellow flash to pass them by. All they got was a flurry of chicken feathers. The pots were neglected.

By now the couple had crossed the road, successfully pitched their tent and were relaxing into their chairs with another beer. Next up a delicious warm shower in sparkling clean amenities, directly onto sundowners then a meal less a redclaw or two. We did the next best thing and had crab in a Thai green curry fired with extra chilli. Ow - bit much chilli. The SW howled and it was quite cold so we either huddled in the shelter of the McMansions or around a blazing campfire. Marshmallows were skewered on a BBQ spike with an impressive reach and foil. We then retired into a tent now secured three times as many pegs driven into pilot holes created using a large screwdriver - Ted would have been proud.

We slept well, whether it be due to the lack of sleep the previous night, an excessive number of tent pegs, rum, beer or less wind, it was academic. After a leisurely breakfast we split up to check the pots to discover an equally miserable take. Back onshore a classic kayak gaggle clustered around Irena's boat taking a close look at the new Flat Earth sail. I am grateful that Ben from Sailtech made my sail. Why he even indulged my pansy request for a colour co-ordinated yellow and black number. But that was not was important - that sort of stuff only matters to boys, I finally got around to it with sail number five. Having snapped two masts, wrecked three tiller extensions, rotted four sails and a professed addiction for paddling the easy way (ie sailing) I think I have come to recognise what I need in the way of a sail for my boat and my skills. The sail that Ben created was well made and re-inforced in the critical places. He even indulged my request for a loop to hang it from (nice guy Ben). Furthermore, this sail is rigged using spectra and 316 marine grade carabineers with locking screws on a deck with extra fibreglass done by Kerry from Natureline. It is all of these aspects together that creates a sail that can take the punishment. While Irena's Flat Earth Sail looked great, I was not happy that what looked like twine had been used to rig the sail and how it had been secured to the deck. The twine (which looked like the stuff to tie onion sacks) was already fraying. Not good enough - not if you want sailing to be fun and reliable.

Dave called in and it was good to see him - it has been a while and he could probably unleash Number 42 again. However, he was a bit late for the prospect of a paddle as we were into breaking camp for the weekend.

Phil and Fay had thought the redclaw banquet was going to be for lunch. Not likely, we were ready and waiting by morning tea. Out with the fresh white bread, lemons, mayo, salt and pepper on a table graced with a tablecloth from Faye's glory box, it was time to feast. Irena had a mountain of experience coming her way on how to dismember the lobster on her plate. The conversation was subdued by culinary intent. We would like to nominate Phil for the new series of Master Chef Goes Wild so he can showcase his fiendishly fantastic redclaw.

The Ranger came down and politely suggested we sod off as the site had been booked for today. When a Harley growled down the roadway we were prepared to do so exceptionally quickly. As it was we parted company soon after when a 4WD towing a caravan pulled up and looked towards us in a territorial manner. After being treated to such fantastically clean and well cared for amenities we did not want to rile the Ranger. Especially since some of the loos had stopped flushing, and he poor devil would have to deal with the donations.

At the end of a particularly blustery weekend we all agreed this one has to go back on the calendar. Back on in summer when more of the little lobsters are prepared to make an honourable sacrifice in an icy slush before being boiled then squished between two pieces of thinly sliced white bread fresh from the Fernvale Bakery and munched on.
The camp - from pip squeaks to McTents
It was like this most of the time.
Photo by Irena
Try and blow those two over
Great site - just roll down to the water
Trying out Rosco's new exped kayak and a caninghi
What a Hobie kayak can become
Graham off to check the pots
Ah the serenity
Miserable take
Comorants by the thousands
Mark and Ray sailing back to camp
Scrutinising the kayak mods
Yummmm ... lobsters
Ready and waiting
Time to tuck in
Including the locals
Photo by Irena