A LARC OF A GREAT TIME!!
Just under year ago I had the pleasure to go and discover Agnes Waters and the Town of 1770. Last time it was a 5 hr trip North from Noosa, this time it was practically just around the corner, a cruisy 90 minute drive south, heading back to the Coast and back to the Pacific Ocean.
On my previous trip here I had the pleasure of taking the Barrier Reef Experience to the magical Lady Musgrave Island. A brilliant adventure out to snorkel in a spectacular coral cay on the Outer Southern Great Barrier Reef.
This time I already knew exactly where I was heading. It was my chance to get out and about on the magnificently Pink LARC of 1770.
GETTING MYSELF SORTED!!
I’d set up my camp down on Workmen’s Beach, a great little site maintained by the local council and at only $6 a night, an absolute camping bargain for a spot down on this über chic part of the coastline. Booked my ticket online for the LARC, thanks to great telephone reception, which is often a rarity in a lot of the campsites I’d stayed at over the last few weeks. And settled back with a few of my friendly fellow campers to watch “The race that stops a nation” on a tele of all luxuries, The Grand Melbourne Cup!!
It had been a while since I’d done something touristy, as in paying for a tour or a cultural experience, spending money for pure pleasure, when I was enjoying getting so much of it for free!! But I wanted to get my tourist fix on, with a friendly guided tour and a picnic lunch to boot. The LARC of 1770 ticked all the boxes for me and with myself booked in for the full day Paradise Tour I was to be found down at the marina at 8:45am, ready, keen and waiting for our adventure to begin by land and by ocean!!
You see the LARC is a beautiful piece of trucking machinery. An amphibious vehicle (meaning she handles like a boat as well as she drives) that’s able to plough through the soft sands, sailing smoothly across the river crossings and easily climbing the hillside up to the Lighthouse at Bustard Heads, our final destination for the day.
Now this is a truck that I would love to take camping!! But today I was content with simply being a passenger and listening to our two comical guides, Neil and Dave, answering all of our questions, pointing out the array of bird life and enlightening us all about the many stories from the Early Settlers days. The trials and tribulations suffered back in the Pioneering times.
The Paradise Tour put on by the LARCy crew was well worth the pennies. We were fed, entertained and my favourite part of the day was when we had the delight to indulge ourselves in a bit of Sensational Sandboarding on the dunes of Middle Island!! Our first practice run was down into the dry sand and the next one was straight into the water.
Now that was some Excellent Fun!!!
BUSTARD HEAD LIGHTHOUSE
After our lunch stop of picnic sandwiches and a pot of billy tea we were off to Bustard Heads and one of Queensland’s few remaining fully operating Lighthouses.
We were given a tour around the restored head light-keepers cottage and taken to the top of the Lighthouse, 16 metres up and with a breathtaking 360 degree view of the surrounding coastline, all the way out to the misty mountains. We walked down to see the tiny cemetery, then it was “all aboard, back on the LARC”.
Our return trip was a lot more relaxed, all the eagerness and excitement of a full day out having taken its toll on this truckload of happy travellers. One and all, if not already sleeping, were happy just to sit back and watch the waves rolling in and the bird’s flying high.
AN EXPERIENCE TO BE SHARED
This was a great way for us all to learn about another part of the Australian history that few ever chance to hear about. And to see a part of the Australian coastline, that is only accessible on the LARC, to help preserve it. Still unspoilt and protected by the National Parks and the good people of this region. Left alone to renew, regenerate, revegetate and to regrow for the future, just like it was in the past.
FROM ONE OFF-ROAD TO ANOTHER …
The next day I was lucky enough to have another sweet off-road opportunity when I ventured into Deepwater National Park with a lovely fellow camper. Darren was generous enough to take Phillip & Nadine (a backpacking couple travelling from Germany) and myself off in his Super Slick 4wd for a day trip into the park, checking out the beaches south of Agnes Waters and enjoying a ride down the sandy, rugged tracks that our little van and car just simply could not make. We’re certainly spoilt for coastline on this huge continent but I still love it every time when you chance upon a beach all to yourself. Who doesn’t, right??
Australia has so much on offer and it comes with the territory that a lot of it involves driving for hours. But when you get to such a picturesque place like Agnes Waters and the Town of 1770, those kilometres you did just seem to fade into the Ocean as the vibe and the charm of this Paradise takes you into its calming fold. Take a day trip out, or just sit on the beach.