I am going to start this blog with a little story from the last day of our time at Moreton Island, mostly because it concerns Jack and poo – how could I resist!
So we’re at the Champagne Pools enjoying a last dip before we go back to the tent to pack up and Jack announces he needs a poo. There are no toilets so Jamie and I are trying to work out what to do. I keep telling him to just dig a hole in the sand somewhere out of view and he’s whinging and complaining but when I suddenly realise Abi and Jack have disappeared. I peer around the front of the car and discover Abi has dug a hole in the sand and is helping Jack have a poo in it. She’s being very helpful indeed, trying to explain how he should scoot forward and sit on the back of his butt so his poo went in the hole. Unfortunately they were having this conversation in full view of the 6 other 4 wheel drive cars and their occupants. Jamie tried to slyly cover up the poo and shuffle Jack around the back of the car as he loudly yelled at his father that he hadn’t finish and he still had one more poo to do!
Back to the beginning, we ended up driving 13 hours to a motel to get us close to the ferry as needed to catch at 8:30am the next morning. The kids did really well, bless their toes. Zachary cracked a fit at 7 and collapsed into sleep just before 8 and I managed to shuffle him into bed when we finally got to our little villa. The next morning we got back up at 6.30 and headed to catch the ferry to Moreton Island. An hour and 15 later we drove off the back and headed down the sands to find our campsite. Jamie got us a permit for a beach campsite, we have 75 to choose from on the North West side of the Island. We settled on No 13, tucked back slightly, surrounded by trees with 2 resident Kookaburras. The boys threw up the tent while the kids ran out onto the beach and then each had a go at the makeshift toilet we had. When you beach camp on Moreton Island you don’t have access to toilets – the rules are you have to bag it and deposit it at the specific spots they have designated. So that’s a new experience!
We had lunch and Olly decided to take a walk while we headed off in the car to sight see. We drove up to the Champagne Pools to take a look. Jamie clambered up onto the rocks and the tide washed in over his toes. After a minute he decide Abi needed to see this too so he dragged her up onto the rocks. I took a few photos and suddenly there is screaming from behind me, and I look up to see Jamie and Abi disappearing over the rocks into the pools. I charged towards them and they come up sputtering and laughing – well Jamie is – poor Abi is sobbing, and telling her Daddy off. They are both soaked from head to foot, luckily Abi took her trousers off so she has something to change into, J is just stuck in his wet clothes. We finished off the day with a trip to the lighthouse, you could for miles – or kilometres – and saw a couple of whales waving their tails at us. We hotfooted it back and started up a fire, toasted some marshmallows and met our local neighbourhood bandicoot. It was a great finish to our first day. Even better that night was not waking up freezing cold, the days were around 23 and the nights didn’t dip lower than about 12. Beautiful!
The next day we went down to Blue Lagoon – it’s not blue – we all had a dip and a swim although it was very fresh! Then had a picnic lunch before heading over to the Champagne Pools for a second dip – this time a planned one. Jack was terrified, spent most of it screaming, clambering over rocks and drinking sea water. He sliced his foot and sobbed until we got a plaster on it. Poor love. Abi on the other hand was in like a fish with Jamie and Oliver, loving it. In fact she asked to go everyday we were there! We made up for it on the way back when Olly spotted 2 wild pigs in the undergrowth, the kids were so excited especially as they were black rather than pink!
On the wed we decided to go sand surfing. Jamie had a few boards he had bought all the way from Warrnambool and headed out to Big Hills. On the way we say a huge dead turtle in the mangroves, poor thing. Apparently the boats motors clip them, and they sometimes choke on plastic that finds its way into the sea – so don’t litter!!!
Anyway lecture over. We got to the hills and I quickly realised just how unfit I am. Olly very kindly waited for me, although slightly unhelpfully kept making me break down in hysterics which makes climbing hills kind of difficult, especially with a baby strapped to my back. Jamie took the kids up and rode down with Abi on his back twice – Jack refused and had just as much fun riding on this butt. Then Olly and J attempted a race and we all gave up. Don’t ever arrive thinking you’ll have loads of rides, twice is about the limit! I made myself the designated photo taker. Afterwards the others headed back to the Champagne Pools for wash off of all the sands and Zachary are I enjoyed a sunset together, lush. 🙂
The next day we headed off to try our hand at fishing. The kids were so excited, they’d been desperate all week to fish. We get down, no one seems to have caught anything but we set up, throw the lines in and within 10 minutes there was one on the line. Jack helped Jamie reel it in, and there at the end was a baby whiting. He was so excited he caught a fish, have it a kiss and threw it back. The lines went back in and then another 10 minutes and we hook another. Abi and Jamie pull it in, and then cart it down to the nearest group to see what it was. Turns out it wasn’t worth eating but still the kids were happy. We didn’t catch anything else but the kids had a ball. We made a call to Toonoolmba Resort where they do Dolphin feedings each night. The lady on the phone pointedly told us we were not allowed to feed or even watch since we were not staying at the Resort. Jamie and Olly decided that was bollocks so we drove down to the edge of the beach limit and snuck into the resort. We slid into the crowds and watched the dolphins dipping and diving, waiting for their feed. After 15 minutes Jamie decided he and Jack (Abi wasn’t interested) were going to break into the feeding. So off they went, nipped through the exit, stripped Jack to his pants and picked up some fish. You could see the big grin in Jamie’s face when he realised they have made it through, Jack was so excited and they gave him 3 fish to feed to his Dolphin. He was called Storm and he was all Jack talked about for the next day, his Dolphin. We got a little souvenir photo for him to put on his wall when we get home.
The next day was our last one and we took a little trip up to 5 hills, and then I got my first and last dip in the champagne pools, followed by the poo experience. Zachary was unimpressed with being stripped naked and having his toes dipped in the water but it was lovely. We had another gorgeous sunset and then settled down for our final night – briefly broken up by Zachary developing what I am only assume was good poisoning. Poor bunny threw up 3 times then had a very unsettled night but almost back to normal by the next day.
We coasted to the boat on the last of our fuel. Jamie and Olly did a quick snorkel out to the wrecks and we soaked up a bit of sun before it was all aboard. We got off the ferry at 5, gave the truck a wash, had dinner and then did 3 hours to Rainbow Beach. We arrived there at 10.30 to discover Jack had accidentally peed on his seat so the boys threw up the tent, stripped and wiped down Jack before collapsing into bed. In the morning I will have my first shower for 7 or so days – swimming in the sea just keeps me ticking over but my hair has been in a pony tail for 3 days and I don’t even have a band in!
If you get the chance to spend some time on Moreton, take it. It was so much fun, and amazing to wake up to the sounds of the waves on the beach and fall asleep listening to them. If you need further persuading check out the photos below – how could you say no to those??!?