Lockhart River #11

WOW! Mid February already. Time does fly when your having fun.

We have been out fishing a few times, only once when we have been out did we come back with no keepers (we did catch some sharks but didn’t keep any).

For the month of January we had 730mls rain – not a bad drop & so far this month we have had 200mls & its raining now, all roads are closed so no driving in or out of Lockhart River, the Peninsula Development Rd that runs from Lakelands to the tip of ‘oz’ is under water in many of the river crossing – so not a lot of traffic anywhere up here at present.

We have had lotz of critters visiting & the birds chatter a lot, many different languages but great sounds.

Keep smiling. 🙂

A fruit dove, not real clever when building a nest.
This specimen didn’t last too long after a storm we had, no sign of egg anymore.
Chilli Beach – tide going out
The high tide covers the whole beach.
I think Chilli Beach is known as the ‘thong’ kingdom.

On way back from Chilli beach, got a bit damper & very slippery.
Yep – more rain.
Had quite a few Rhinoceros beetles fly in, they hiss at you….
‘Nina’ the house pet bat, visits most nights for banana.
Don’t know the name but he had lovely wings.
I think he’s checking out my water bottle, getting ready for a walk maybe?????
Had to get a new hat as he donated the other one to the fish…haha
Lotz of fresh water running into the Claudie River from the rains. (a good hang out for bara)
Got to watch out for these rocks when going out the river, all under water at high tide.
People park their boats in funny positions up here.
Heaps of these critters around, this girl finishing Nina’s left over banana.
What a cutie, haven’t discovered their name yet but they building a nest near by.
so cute & beautiful
Indian cucumber root, so my app says. Cute little moth visiting.

Lockhart River #10

WOW! what a great start to 2021. Peter & I went out fishing, the bay was flat & beautiful, so out we went. At our first stop we caught 6 sharks within about 15 minutes, lotz of fun but we realeased them all, moved to another spot & caught another 2 sharks within minutes. The clouds were definately building quickly & there was rain around, once the wind began we decided to head back to the Claudi River, got a bit wet from the waves & the rain. Did some trolling in the river & I caught a baracuda, Peter caught a queenie then we tried one of Peter’s spots & YES he caught a bara, not big but 59cm which is just legal so he was a keeper. So we had a wonderful day, catching the fish was a bonus.

On one of our walks Peter came across a green snake, glad it was him & not me. Also found this beautiful chinese hibiscus with a grasshopper on it with a huge appetite…..

Last week on my return trip from work in the community I only got so far up the driveway & stopped. Much safer idea to walk up to house, Peter came down & we used the winch to pull down the tree completely & then got the chainsaw into action. He has had to use the chainsaw on several trees lately after storms.

Not sure at this stage but I imagine in the mangrove family.
Yea, there is bara in the Claudi river.
Luckily he was just over the legal size.
Tasmanian flax-lily
The fruit of the Tasmanian flax-lily – beautiful but toxic.
More ‘fungi’ but they are pretty awesome & very colourful.
These fellows are small but an awesome colour.
Top side of this fellow.
Under side of the above.
Natal plum
Looks like a bouquet.
Peter nearly stood on this fellow, but he allowed a pic then took off.
Can you guess this little fellow’s thoughts??
Came home from work one day – nice day for a walk up the driveway.
The winch on the patrol should do the job.
Yea ha. All good. Now just a job for the chainsaw.

Lockhart River #9

Christmas 2020 – Iron Range Research Station, a bit cloudy & we will probably get more rain as we have had 57mls early this morning. Slept in, scrambles eggs for breakfast then we went for a walk over to the orchard, lotz of sweating involved, lotz of march flies but lotz of fungi. Its approx 4 klms but the hills are quite steep so the heart rate is definately high, but its good & we are improving all the time. We are planning on lighting up the BBQ & getting some coals to cook our lamb roast in, hopefully we will find some dry wood after the downpour early this morning, going to cook up some mince & veg in the other camp oven as well – thats the plan at this stage.

Merry Christmas, enjoy & stay safe. xxxooo 🙂

I love ‘fungi’ – lotz of pics in this blog of fungi.
Yea, we made it across the fast flowing creek…….hahaha. We have seen little turtles at this crossing.
I’m gonna make it up this hill.
Getting closer to the top of this one!
WOW! some of this ‘fungi’ is amazing.
I love walking, it makes me feel soooooo good.
Peter got some good coals happening for our campoven Xmas dinner.
And then the rain began again….
Camp ovens not looking too good, I think it will be a ‘on top of the stove job’ to finish off the cooking.
Yummo – ended up being very tasting.
Happy New Year to all – stay safe & have a great 2021. 🙂

Lockhart River # 8

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to you all.

The week before Christmas.

Since we have been here at Lockhart River at the premises where we are living we have been able to indulge in some lovely home grown fruits, this time a lovely pineapple – WOW, it was beautiful. I also found a few purple passionfruit down the driveway, a good find, should get a few nice desserts out of these. The bugs & critters are getting lively, not every night but they love to share the ‘love’…haha.

The ponies love bread, actually they love just about anything you give them, as long as you don’t get too close. There are quite a lot of ‘community’ ponies around, sometimes you see the kids riding them, otherwise they just wander & go where ever they please.

We have walked over to the ‘orchard’ area a few times since the rains has started, lotz of blooms & so much grass but no joy for the mango plants yet…

There was a polish backpacker at the store where I work(she left Xmas eve), a lovely girl, we took her out in boat & also went walking along the ‘old Coen road’ again, it was great, a bit more water than last time & so very green now. The blooms were jumping out everywhere. Peter & Ania walked across a log to cross on of the crossings, I just waddled through….haha. So many beautiful flowers everywhere, most of the names are from an app I have & also a couple of books so if they are incorrect I appoligise.

Life at the community is always different – last picture tells the story. 🙂

Yummo – home grown, one of the best pineapples ever – so sweet.
Unfortuneately some night the flying ants send us to bed extra early…..haha
On my way to work at the store, customers eagerly awaiting for something?????
Chinese hibiscus -WOW! they are so nice at the moment, there will be lotz more pics of these to come.
Cogon Grass/Blading grass – a weed, but does look nice at present.
Cigartree/Indian bean tree – very delicate & pretty flower.
Peter & Ania crossing the western branch of the Claudi River.
Malabar melastome/Indian rhododendron
Golden guinea tree/Red beech
Brown kurrajong
Synostemon glaucus
Indian mulberry/Cheese fruit- apparently the fruit smells of vomit (I didn’t get too close)
Stinking passionflower-also known by many different names, Bush passionfruit being one.
Spiny-head mat-rush/Basket grass
Uvaria grandiflora
Australian almond
When we collected Ania (the backpacker, she lives near the police station), I just had to take a pic of the clients lining up for court appearances……

Lockhart River #7

It was definately a bit ‘hairy’ heading down to the Pascoe River, big rocks & washouts, Peter did a great job manouvering the ute down. We did walk down first & walked across the river then up the other side just to make sure we weren’t dreaming that we could do it, its always a good idea to have a look & check out where you have to go then decide which way you are going to do it.

I’m glad we got down, across & up the other side because I wasn’t looking forward to having to turn around & go back the way we come, it could have been a long night. We got back to the house about an hour before dark so that ws good. The ute went very well & Peter’s driving skills did the job. 🙂

Slowly motoring downhill to the Pascoe River

Definately didn’t want the tyres in that washout.
Did a bit of slipping & sliding but all ended well at this stage.
Now for the next stage.
Just about down to the water.
The Pascoe River – haven’t seen any crocs but will be keeping eyes peeled.
Definately did a bit of walking on this crossing, I obviously didn’t walk the same place as Peter because the 3 times I walked across the river it came up to my waist…haha.
Woo ho, now all there is to do is to get up the other side.
Doesn’t look pretty but the ‘old girl’ should be ok.
Nearly there.
The view from the top was awesome. We conquered the Pascoe River & survived. 🙂

Lockhart River #6

WOW! after leaving Moreton Telegraph Station we headed south, just before we got to Batavia Station there was a track on the left(the Frenchman’s Track – you can u-tube it if your interested), its a short cut & just under 100klms – we decided to take it, it will bring us out on Portlands Road approximately 30klms from the Lockhart River turnoff but you still have to cross over the Wenlock & Pascoe Rivers so it should be interesting………hahaha. It took us 4 & 1/2 hours to complete the Frenchman’s track….

This is the beginning of the Frenchmans track – very good track.
Southern swamp crinum/String lily
Some massive termite mounds -actually lotz of them.
This track is too easy.
We got out of ute & walked quite a few crossings before going through, this is part of the entrance to the Wenlock River.
Here she comes.
No worries, she is a good old girl.
The mighty Wenlock.
The track continues.
Which side will we go…….
Here we go.
We took the right hand side as the left hand side looked like it would be more slippery to get out of.
Good choice.
Malabar melastome. They are everywhere but so pretty.
Always lotz of detours required.
There was a few other creek crossings, some a bit deeper than first thought.
Common swamp pitcher-plant. Apparently they attract mossies & eat them.
the book says & also the plant app I have that this is a Common swamp pitcher-plant……..
Here we go again, but not too deep & lotz of fun.

Woo ho. Just warming up for the Pascoe River crossing, we came across a motorbike rider, quad bike & suzuki 4wd, they said it was a bit hairy & didn’t take any vehicles across it………….we will find out soon.

Lockhart River # 5

Not sure if the ‘wet season’ has begun but we have had a bit of rain, hopefully more on the way. There are some amazing flowers blooming at present and the aroma from the gardenias is still in the air (mmmmm).

This last weekend (Fri 11th/Sat12th), we drove to Weipa. WOW! did the skies open along the way, we nearly turned back just in case we couldn’t get back, but we perservered – the rain was very intermittant & heavy at times. Once we got onto the Weipa road(Penisula Development Rd), the rain really pelted down, still intermittant but very heavy. Kept raining most of afternoon although I don’t think it rained much overnight. Saturday, after breakfast & a little bit of shopping we were off, we took the Batavia Rd, 75 klms from Weipa which took us to Bativia Station which backs onto the Development Rd heading north to the “tip”. We wanted to have a look at Moreton Telegraph Station as we were ‘caretakers’ there from January to April in 2013 – quite different from when we were there, the Wenlock was always in flood, either over the bridge or just under so seeing it like this was great.

Cephalaria leucantha – apparently in the honeysuckle family.
Old man’s beard also known as Travellers’ joy – apparently a noxious weed but still pretty.
Golden guinea tree/Red beech – they are flowering everywhere at the moment – beautiful.
Vito – Genipa americana – apparently a part of the coffee family
Poisonbulb/Swamplily/Spider lily, beautiful but not good for humans or dogs.
Chinese Hibiscus/Shoeback plant/Rose mallow -has quite a few different names.
Just got to love ‘fungi’……..
Lotz of these fellows along the road as we were driving to Weipa.
Before reaching Weipa town, we had to stop at the ‘haul road’ until we got the green light.
This is a good reason to stop, he is much bigger than us.
Even scarier when he gets closer…..
Moreton Telegraph Station, gate shut so we didn’t venture in.
The bridge over the Wenlock River on the Development Rd, next to Moreton Telegraph Station.
There is a far distance between the water level and the bottom of the bridge.
The Wenlock is so clear, clean & quite shallow in places. (quite inviting)
When in flood this was our spa(when we did our stint at Moreton), its on a creek that runs into the Wenlock (approx 500m from river)

Lockhart River #4

We have managed to go out in the boat a few times, whenever we can work the tides & weather, off we go(usually Friday, Saturday & Sunday as I work down at the community store the other days til lunch time). We stick to the Claudi River when its windy (I do not like white caps) but we will venture out again soon to the Lockhart River & maybe some of the islands. The Claudi is quite lovely, although we haven’t managed to get an eski full of fish we have managed to catch at least one keeper each time we have been out which has been yummo. We have caught mangrove jack, blue nosed salmon, flathead, bream, cod & a baracuda -all very delicious.

Before we left Cairns I bought myself a new camera so I am enjoying playing with it, hope to improve my skill BIG time but I imagine it will take time.

There are some amazing coloured butterflys, I am still trying to catch them but they don’t seem to like camera’s….haha. I will keep trying.

This last weekend just gone 5th & 6th December we took the boat into the Claudi & managed to catch 1 keeper each day, actually Saturday we caught 2 keepers but on Sunday after catching our 1 keeper we decided to go upstream more, we ventured to new waters – WOW! what a difference in vegetation & landscape. It was quite unique, palm trees everywhere lotz of birdlife although not possible to get pics, I too slow. It was very interesting, did find a facinating plant though.

The great Claudi River…
There are some amazing coloured butterflys, I need more practice but will keep trying.
Can you see the Queen in the top right fungi???????
Lotz of fungi…..such amazing stuff.
Lotz of these critters hanging around.
He was thinking – I like this photo……
Bush turkeys galore.
George the pig, he lives across & down the road but is a frequent visitor.
Wenlock Gardenia/Cape Jasmine – beautiful. I just love the gardenia family.
The mighty Claudi River – upstream
Hankerchief tree / Maniltoa browneoides – it was quite amazing.

Iron Range #3

WOW! we have been here at Lockhart River for over 5 weeks now. Time is definately going quick. Up to this stage there hasn’t been much rain, one day we had 47mls but since only small amounts of 3 ml to 7 ml but I imagine it will happen soon. The days have been good, does get warm but we always have a great breeze, I think our hottest day has been in the mid 30’s, it usually ranges from 30 -35 deg. A few days before we got here there was a rather large bush fire(apparently lit by the locals) – you get that, unfortunately it burnt out the orchard that was growing on the outskirts of the rain forrest & it was on of the main watering jobs for us to attend to -it even melted the tank to not much. The fruit trees were not happy & they still aren’t but I think there maybe a chance for a few of them if we get some m.ore rain. For several days & acouple of weeks, Peter spent a lot of time going back & forwards to the orchard area & beyond to look out for smoke & fires, there were a few logs smoldering which did start burning again due to the windy conditions After the rain we got it didn’t take long for a carpet of green grass to sprout & thankfully no smoke or fires to be seen but it was ongoing for a week or so to keep an eye out.

The lorikeets are in abundance & they do lotz of swarking . The Cape York Lily is beautiful & popping up everywhere.

At the moment we have lotz of lizards, a few different types (I think) but I still trying to find out info on them. Lotz of ants. Lotz of bush turkeys.

This is the remains of the tank.
This palm started to have regrowth even before any rain.
After the rain we had, it didn’t take long to get a carpet of green happening, hopefully some more rain will assist the fruit trees also.
Lotz of these critters around at the moment, not easy to get a photo of, they keep moving….haha
WOW! The Cape York Lily/White Turmeric – simply gorgeous
Peter quite likes playing on this toy, the washouts have been a ‘bit’ hairy but we survived.
Crimson Cattleya – another WOW! flower.
Lotz of these critters, not sure of the name but will keep working on it.
There is quite a few of these planted around, hopefully one may ripen in our time here.
Asian Coriander – apparently a weed, but it tastes great.
Native Lasiandra / Malabar Melastrome
Lotz of these – ‘white lipped frog’

Pandanus Tectorius (Tahitian Screw Pine)

Iron Range Research Station #2

We have a few different critters here cruising around the pods. Not a lot of them we actually see but you can hear them & see where they have been the next morning…haha

We went out boating 2 weeks ago, the boat ramp a little different, have to keep an eye on the tides – not good for mid-low tide & lower, but we will continue to try. It quite amazing where people just leave their boats, parked up on land, some have a motor others don’t. We tried our luck at fishing, put the boat in at Claudi River, the ramp not the most friendly although the sand flies were very friendly, then motored out to mouth, tried trolling – no joy so we went over towards the mouth of the Lockhart River – there is like a delta there of lotz of small islands -did some trolling & eventually caught a blue nosed salmon 53cms. That was our catch for the day, back to the boat ramp, no sand flies but getting close to the “don’t want to go there time” – all good. Fresh fish for dinner.

Last weekend we drove up the Chillie Beach (a very popular camp spot), nothing there but beach, WIND, a few toilets -nice but not our type of spot, alot of people go 4wding along the beach & also launch their boats for fishing off the beach, we not that keen but you never know. we then went to Portlands Road, not much here also – a boat ramp (which again is suitable at the right tide), we will try to go out here – will depend on the tides & wind being happy together. There is a cafe which is open Sat, Sun – 10am -2pm. Very nice, small but great food & cute.

There a lot of these critters around.
White lipped frog – we have quite a few of these critters too.
Peter likes this little toy.
People park there boats in some funny places, looked like they have parked in up for a while.
Yea – a blue nosed salmon – over the legal size too.
Chilli Beach – obvioiusly lotz of 4wd’s on beach by the tracks but we did see 2 near the water looking for oysters on the rocks.
Found this little treasure on the beach – not a millionaire but still good.
Mangrove roots – quite amazing really.
Not sure what this is, but seen along the road a lot – will work on it.
Entrance to the cafe at Portlands Road.
The lookout from our table.
Yummo lunch.
Saw this critter running off the road as we left Portlands Road,