05.01.13I’d been researching all the SEQ scout camps to find a few we could stay at and found one less than an hour away. On contacting the gentleman running Guanaba at the last possible minute, we found that he had a cancellation that morning and was only too happy to let us hire out his facility.
Having no idea what the site was like other than what can be seen on Google, we agreed to his terms and conditions. We’d need to pick up the key some 30k’s from our destination and it’s further down the highway than we really need to go, but if it gets us in the gate all well and good.
We are on the road around 0800 and bound for the residential address of the key holder. I’ve been told if no-one is home to check the letter box and this is where I find it. I deposit our fees in its place and send a text once back in the car to alert them. We negotiate our way out of suburbia and make a bee line for our next destination as best we can without having a straight line to get there.
1 hour after our departure from home we are onsite – can’t get better than that really - and find the gate already unlocked. I open the gate and allow the ute and trailer to get off the road. Back in the car and we slowly make our way towards the Scout Den to see what awaits us.
The track in doesn’t allow us to see what’s ahead until we cross a branch of the creek and everything opens up before us.
Initially we see a large open grassed area and up above that the Den. We pull up on the grassy area and decide to investigate the entire site on foot before we make a decision on where we will set up.
Heading up to the Den, we notice the road going right past the scout camp over yonder. I see the amenities block behind the Den and head that way for a look. Toilets and shower for both boys and girls – but you do need to bring your own gas supply if you require those showers to be hot. Water is pumped up to some tanks from the creek, but please do be sparing with its use none the less, as at the time of our visit, the creek was all but dry.
Heading further back up the hill, we notice some more tanks, a power pole for use and even further away is the bush chapel and it’s a very nicely laid out one.
We head back down to the campground to decide on where the camper is going to be positioned. I’m leaving this decision entirely up to Glenn. We could camp anywhere on the driveway as it has some lovely grassed areas, but we would like some privacy so have chosen to camp below the Den on the large grassed area. It’s furthest from the road and beside the dry creek.
Glenn chooses the location and we set up. Solar panels go out and there isn’t much else to do but explore the creek. We decide on having some lunch and sitting for a bit as it’s really muggy today. Probably due to being overcast and we believe there is potential for some rain … albeit not much.
Whilst relaxing, another car drives in. I imagined we’d be alone, but that’s okay. Turns out it’s another Scout Group person who’s come in to do a few things around the camp as he believed it to be empty. He’s a very chatty fellow and we spend the next hour having a guided tour of the premises which was rather nice. We didn’t plan on opening the Den or showers, but he’s done so because he’s checking that the last tenant left them pristine, so this is the perfect opportunity for some photos. Once his checks are through, he mentions that the only water we’ll find in the creek should be below the bush chapel, so we plan to find this as he drives off.
Alone once more we decide to wander the creek and see if there is any water in it. Wandering through the lower section, we run out of grass and find pathways leading into the bush. We take the one that runs parallel with the creek and when it peters out, we follow the creek for a short distance and find a small pool of water. Telashi is straight in of course and we find it is just deeper than her shoulder in some parts. A water dragon escapes the area heading up to the bush chapel which is indeed directly above us. We follow the creek for a bit longer and find another small pool before it becomes too hard for Jack. He and I turn back whilst the others head on for a few minutes.
Once they rejoin us, we stop for another quick doggie swim and then head slowly back to camp. We have a ½ chicken to defrost and some coals to work on for dinner.
This trip will involve a lot of sitting around doing not much. It’s too hot to do anything else and there isn’t all that much to do here with no water in the creek. We throw the ball for Telashi, then the Frisbee and finally just do nothing much for awhile.
We notice that there are houses all around with horses, cows, dogs and that the road (although not a highway by any means) has a constant flow of traffic in and out (say 10 – 15 cars an hour). A few people stop at the park on the opposite side of the creek, but no one picnics. We head over the creek to check out the park, but it’s not very exciting. No play equipment or tables & chairs … just green lawn and trees.
We investigate the wood pile for anything we can use. It’s all huge rounds that need a good chop up before being able to use them, so Glenn gets to it. We plan to use the fireplace near our camp which reminds me of a fire place in a picnic area or national park with its large metal surround, it’s flip over hot plate and bars limiting the size of timber we can use. It’s mounted on a large cement “tank” which makes everything rather easy to reach. I help Glenn bring over the timber he’s cut and we get the fire started.
While we are awaiting some nice coals, we get the vegies prepared and I decide we also need cake. Mud Cake. I get this organised and then there is nothing to do but await some coals, and throw the ball for the dog, perhaps a short walk, a doze in the comfortable chairs, or other such relaxing stuff.
And this is how our day progresses to its end.
During the later part of the afternoon, I notice some Tawny Frogmouths have flown into a tree above our camp so we try to get some good photos of them. They give us something else to look at for awhile before flying off in search of dinner.
We put up a privacy wall towards the road so we can have showers and also to keep any rain out of the camper doorway during the night.
Then we relax in front of the fire’s last embers of the night and hit the hay.4.6AH
06.01.13Next day dawns rather gloomy and we did get some rain over night, although calling it rain seems a bit overenthusiastic. Of course the canvas is wet, so we’ll have to wait for it to dry a bit before we can shut up shop. What better way to do that than by a leisurely stroll here and there around the campsite.
Today we do about as much as yesterday, which includes going up to the swimming hole a few times. We check out the facilities once more to ensure the photos are good and take shots of some signage as well.
Dishes get down and things get packed away. We get a few short showers, but nothing really canvas drowning. Glenn gives the Velcro a once over and we decide to pack it away before a big black cloud heads our way. Of course, once away, the sun shines like never before and the clouds disappear as if by magic. Okay that’s a slight exaggeration, but you get what I mean I’m sure.
We wander up to the front of the property today and have a good look at the creek up that way. No water, no change. We are finding these large “nuts” everywhere about the place and when wearing thongs, you certainly notice them under foot, although raking the campsite did not happen as they weren’t in that area luckily.
Lunchtime is upon us before we realise and we eat under the shade of trees. After cleaning up, we make our final preparations and make our way home, returning back to the suburban house to drop off the key first of course. It is a bit earlier than we normally head off, but we have things to do at home and the weather isn’t making us feel like staying either as it’s alternating between showers and sun. Besides an early mark isn’t such a bad thing on occasion.9.1AH
Trip Kilometres: 158
Trip Duration: 48 hours
Afterword: I’m sorry it’s taken me so long, but it’s been rather hard to write this blog. A week after returning from Guanaba, Jacks arthritis got worse, he injured himself through the night and the vet could do nothing to help him. As a result, this would be Jacks last trip with us.
Rest In Peace my gentle friend.