20180810 Moreton Island
14-08-2018, 02:48 PM,
#1
20180810 Moreton Island
What a fantastic few days this has been.
Darryl and I have traveled to most sites in the island and walked up to most of the vantage points, think much leg muscles are getting a real workout lol.


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17-08-2018, 09:57 PM,
#2
RE: 20180810 Moreton Island
Moreton Island trip.
 
This was a really quick trip put together due to the Exhibition midweek public holiday, which meant two days rec leave equals five days off work.  A quick search for who’s available and Peter can get the time off.  In the short time that it took to book the MiCat, I managed a Saturday departure and Peter had to travel on the Friday.  We both managed a Wednesday return.
 
Why Moreton Island and not Fraser as the plan was.  Moreton is closer than Fraser, 70 to 90 minutes on the barge and only $180 return.  As it turns out I left home at 6.30 and arrived at the MiCat terminal with plenty of time to spare for the 7.30 boarding for sailing at 8.30.  Within 90 minutes I was on the island and heading North for the Bulwar store to meet Peter.
 
An easy run up the beach saw me at the Cowan Cowan Southern bypass and sitting in the sand and water were two bunkers from the Fort Cowan battery.  These are some of the relics of the WW2 defence of Brisbane.  No need to say that I stopped for a photo.
       
 
Onwards to meet Peter at Castaways Café and Store where we worked out the plan for the next couple of days.  The plan was … well there was no plan except to see as much of the island as we could.
 
As we were so close to Cowan Cowan and with the knowledge there was more WW2 structures there we headed back down the beach and wandered along the beach and saw the batteries and more military style structures that we could only guess what their original purpose was.
                           
 
Back to Bulwer and a look over the wrecks.
             
 
History of the Bulwer Wrecks
The Bulwer Wrecks were scuttled on the beach at Bulwer, Moreton Island by Robert Alexander Gow, known to people associated with the island as Bert and later in life as Pop. The wrecks were to provide shelter for Gow's 40 foot (12 metres) launch Maringo named after his mother Mary Ingles Gow. The shelter of the wrecks facilitated the safe unloading of materials necessary to build a house on his first lease which Gow acquired in 1928 and after that the food and other provisions needed for the many holidays his family reputedly enjoyed at Bulwer. There are many fond memories throughout the Gow family, of time spent at Bulwer, particularly of the fishing. If you didn't like fishing you were obviously a "ring-in". The tradition still continues today (2008) with Bert's youngest son Alistair, his wife Norma and their family holidaying regularly at the property at Bulwer.
When World War II broke out Bert held a contract with the army to carry stores from Brisbane to the fort at Cowan Cowan. He travelled to the island every day for eighteen months until the navy took Maringo from him for the war effort.
(http://indicatorloops.com/comboyuro.htm)
 
Onwards from here was follow the beach around the island toward the Cape.  We passed by Comboyuro Point, Tailor Bight and Yellow Patch.  Stopping to have a walk up to North Light and look over Honeymoon Bay and the Champagne Pools.
               

We then crossed over to the ocean beach and having heard that the light house was under renovation decided not to stop.  Once on the ocean side we decided that with the tides on our side we should head for Kooringal and have a look at the world famous Gutter Bar.  A couple of beers an early dinner, we popped over to Reeders Point and then decided to find a camp on the Western side of the island.  After a short drive up the beach we found a water access point with a hand pump for fresh water and plenty of space, immediately North of the Little Sandhills.
 
Sunday mornings plan was to drive over to the ocean beach, visit the Rous Battery, do a little fishing and find a campsite.  To do this we headed North along the inside of the island passing a submerged shipwrecked sailing boat and some old wrecks at Shark Spit.  Can’t really hang around her at the moment as the tide is coming in and there’s not a lot of beach.
           
 
Once we make it to the Southern entry of the Tangalooma bypass
   
we know that we don’t have to worry about the tide anymore as the track leads right into Middle Road, which will take us across the island.
 
Heading South we make for Rous Battery which consists of two gun emplacements, one the erosion has not been kind too, battery plotting room, magazine, artillery store, water tank and command bunker.  Once home I found that there are some more structures that are in the area, this means I am going back to find them.  The command bunker allows for some great views and a spot of whale watching.
                                               

As the day is slipping away we drive most of the tracks to the camps behind the dunes and find plenty of great camps however most are occupied or too close to other campers.  We do settle on a camp at Blue Lagoon North.
 
Monday we decide to head back across the island taking the Bulwer Road with a short stopover at Honeyeater Lake viewing platform.  Whilst in Bulwer we might as well stop for lunch and a coffee.
       
 
From here over to Yellow Patch where stop for a while watching the birds bomb diving what we assume to be a school of bait fish.  We take a wrong turn off the beach and find the camp sites behind the swamp and a track to Five Hills Lookout.  Whilst it’s high and a good breeze there was plenty of midges.  It’s near here that we see the first of the many Openheimer telegraph poles, that we have seen in the desert and on Cape York.
           
 
We know that the light house is being renovated and head on in anyway.  We are able to head into the information centre.  We can make it up the steps but not around the light house however not a bad spot for some more whale watching and views down the beach.
           
 
Back down the beach to find a camp and discover that last nights camp must have been good as there is somebody else in there.  By now it’s dark and we find a spot at the end of the road, turned out to be a pretty good spot to stay the night.  Like all the camp in the Blue Lagoon camping area, they are behind the dunes with no ocean views.
 
Tuesday looms and our first visit is to the Blue Lagoon, a short walk from the carpark, the water at this time of the year is a little too cool for swimming.  Must be why we had the place to ourselves.
           

Onwards we venture to tackle the 2 kilometer walk, uphill, to the summit of Mt Tempest.  Don’t be fooled it’s a decent walk, ask Peter, but well worth the effort with views across the island and the bay back to Brisbane.
           
 
After the walk we head South looking for a campsite, early for a change.  I drive up a track and find a bloke that is packing up.  This was the best campsite of the trip, level, grassed and views from the viewing deck.
       
 
Wednesday, is the day we leave the island, but we’re not on the barge until 3.30pm.  We decide to head up to the cape and see if we can drive back around the top of the island.  While the tide is coming onto high there is plenty of beach and it’s reasonably firm.  We stop at North Point campground to check out the amenities, this would be an ok camp but no fires.
 
We make it to the beach, no deal, there is no beach and the wind is whipping the seas to a frenzy.  Lucky we knew that the Five Hills Lookout joined up with the Bulwer Road.  So on to Bulwer and lunch and coffee.  Then back down the beach to check out the Desert and then to the Wrecks where we pass the time until the Micat arrives.
           
 
Once loaded on the barge there is an opportunity to use the air hose to return the tyres to road pressure.  Back on the mainland and I’m home by 6 oçlock.
 
Short summary of the weekend. 
We went fishing everyday, the catch was still with the total 2 undersized tailor and a stargazer.  The face only a mother could love.
There is more of Rous Battery and Fort Cowan that exists that is easily located.
There is no hot showers in the National Park campsite.
Would I go back?  Yes, in a heartbeat.  It’s not Fraser but I can be driving on the island within 4 hours of leaving home.
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20-08-2018, 12:04 PM,
#3
RE: 20180810 Moreton Island
Thanks for the fantastic report and pics Daggy! Moreton is one place I haven't been to as yet, so would definately be keen to get over there at some stage.  Tongue
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29-08-2018, 10:13 PM,
#4
RE: 20180810 Moreton Island
Thanks for once again a Fantastic report Daryl

I still love Fraser and will return many times in the Future but Now I know some of the good camp sites Moreton has a special place also.

I think we need to plan a club trip there soon but things being as they are from now on I am guessing a trip may have to wait until after the xmas period next year.
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