Back to Cairns

Sunday morning three weeks ago Jeff dropped me off at the botanical garden. From there I started my short morning walk. After a few minutes I reached Finch bay, but due to the high tide, there was not much left from the beach. Hence, I continued on, and did some moves onto a boulder on the middle of the way to Cherry Tree bay, from where I had a nice view to Mount Cook. Cherry Tree Bay was even worse and completely flooded. This was my last beach at the East Coast. Due to the salties occupying this area, swimming is not advised at all. But locals sometimes still get into the water for some refreshment. The I hiked up to Grassy Hill, and walked through several spider webs along the way. Luckily the large spiders with the large webs are easily to detect, but the smaller ones, ending up directly in your face. From Grassy Hill you’ve a 360° view from the ocean, via Mount Cook to the hinterland and back. From here Captain Cook looked for a route to get through the reef and shallow sandbanks 250 years ago. Once I returned to the town I had a refreshing beer in the pub before I got a lift by some friends of Christina & Jeff, as the courtesy bus was not operating yet.

In the early afternoon Jeff gave me a lift back to the town with all my luggage, so I could catch the bus. The road up to Cape York was still closed due to flooding, and also the main road from Coen to Weipa closed shortly after, as the Archer River was flooding. Glencore operates the large bauxite mining in Weipa from where the bauxite is either shipped on a barge to Gladstone via Cape York and through the Great Barrier reef or nowadays even directly to some Asian countries. The hinterland of the southern end of the Cape York peninsula is quite mountainous. Due to recent rain falls, some of the creeks were full of murky water, whereas others were super dry. North of Cape Tribulation and especially in Cooktown I haven’t seen any backpacker. Some might end up in The Lions Den roadhouse which is about one hour south of Cooktown. Once I returned to Cairns, the tourist capital of Far North Queensland I was suddenly surrounded by all these backpackers in their early 20’s. What a cultural shock to the original blokes I met in the morning in the Top Pub in Cooktown.

Lookout from the boulder to Mount Cook via Finch Bay
Cherry Tree Bay was my last beach along the East Coast
This is a large golden leg spider (something like that I was told two days earlier)…large web but not venomous
View from grassy hill to the mountains of the hinterland
The railway station building of the line to Laura was relocated to the main street in the 1960’s opposite to the Top Pub
We’re heading south, along all sealed roads, so the ongoing flooding several hundred kilometres north don’t bother us
The Black Mountain a few minutes drive south of Cooktown
Crossing the Palmer River over a high bridge is no problem, even when there’s some water flowing
Crossed a mountain ridge behind Lakeland when it started to rain
The bus driver made sure, he’s back in Cairns on time…and beside a young German couple, and another girl from Lakeland the bus was empty
In Mareeba we shortly followed the railway line from Cairns to (now) Forsayth via the touristic section to Kuranda
Christina, Theo, Jeff and I
My morning walk around Grassy Hill

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