OYSTERS, WILDERNESS & A SMALL TOWN
Trip Start Oct 05, 2009
325Trip End Oct 31, 2013
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coffin bay np- yangie bay camp
JOURNEY: port Lincoln, Coffin Bay, Coffin Bay NP- 80kms
WEATHER: Drizzle, cloudy, around 18 degrees
We were looking forward to reaching Coffin Bay NP because we had heard many good reports about the place. It is a 4WD paradise apparently and we did see a lot of those pulling camper trailers letting down tyres and driving into the 4WD only area. We did walk part of that track and it was sandy and rough.
A bitumen road takes us all the way to Yangie Bay campground and as usual, we found a perfect site where we fitted neatlyamong the native vegetation in a secluded area. We were happy as.....!! Especially because we had some fears that the camp ground might be full during school holidays. There were just 4 other campers today.
The Yangie Lookout Trail gave us a perspective over the bay and to the nearby Marble Range but the soft rain soon saw us back to camp. This is a picturesque area clothed in dense scrubland and attractive Drooping Sheoaks with wild flowers still in bloom. We could see the massive yellow sand dunes in the distance.
Bird life was prolific; we sighted blue wrens, grey breasted white eyes, emus, currawongs, oyster catchers, the gorgeous golden whistler, last seen in WA, dusky wood swallow, banded rail, egrets, white faced herons, galahs and the white eyes became our favourites as they whizzed around the camp. Sheila did a great job taking close up photos of them- they are so cute.
Our next few days camped at Yangie were fine with Saturday being perfect camping weather – sunny, cool and still and we took the opportunity to tackle the Yangie Island Hike which was an easy 8kms return walk through the scrub to a sandy beach opposite the tiny conservation park- Yangie Island.
Our morning one hour walks were trekked on the road with views of the pounding ocean, windswept cliffs and sandy beaches. Signs warning of the danger of ocean currents, and crumbling cliffs make you aware that the mighty Southern Ocean is wild and awesome and should be treated with respect. We enjoyed the challenge of some strenuous crests to get the heart rate raised.
Campfires kept us warm and hypnotised from about 5pm each night, and we collected some slow burning wood from a vacant camp and finally burned the wood we had bought in Delamere so long ago. What a magical experience it is to sit by the fire in the silence of the evening with a dazzling starry sky above and appreciate this simple joy!! Stoking and adding skilfully are part of the fun.
We cooked some tasty spicy lamb burgers on the flames with great success and of course sipped on a glass of Shiraz to enhance the experience.
A bright almost full moon made a spooky appearance in the sky one night and of course sunrise and sunset afforded photo opportunities.
MONDAY OCTOBER 10
JOURNEY: Coffin Bay, Wangary, Farm Beach, Port Lincoln
On Monday we drove to Point Avoid and Golden Beach at 7am where look outs provide views over the ocean and cliffs.
Then it was off to the town of Coffin Bay, situated at the western tip of the Eyre Peninsula has a population of around 650, so is quite small but with a certain charm. Fishing is big here and the wharf is busy with boats unloading catches of King George whiting, garfish, octopus, scallops and abalone; oyster boats docked with their baskets of the famous Coffin Bay oysters.
We headed for Kellidie Bay Conservation Park and took the Oyster Walk to the original Oyster town, now just a ruin with a mass of rosemary bushes, once a single plant, filling the site. This is where the original oysters were dredged in the late 1800's and where the first settlers lived. It always seems sad that once thriving towns become just another ruin and you see it a lot as you travel around. Anyway, today the bay is the centre of aquaculture and a new town flourishes.
Kath was hoping to have a lunch of oysters but the restaurant was closed on Mondays!!
It was a cloudy but generally dry day and we drove to the west coast of the peninsula through Wangary to investigate a free camp at Farm Beach; not to our expectations so it was back to Lincoln National Park for a few more nights.