Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Brisbane to Melbourne, Tasmania, and Back Summary

As much as we love cruising, sometimes it's just good to get off the boat, and sometimes it's the only way to really see a country.  Australia is HUGE.  Even after looking at maps and devouring guides we still didn't have a feel for just how big the country is.  It wasn't until we started driving, kilometer after kilometer speeding by, that the true size of the country began to sink in.  In the end we couldn't possibly do everything or cover all of Australia; we just didn't have the time (or money).  So we decided on renting a little campervan and driving the east coast, from Brisbane to Melbourne.  Then we flew to Tasmania, spending a week circumnavigating the island via another rented campervan. Finally we flew from Tasmania to Sydney to hang with friends, then did a mad dash, driving back to Mooloolaba in a two day period.  We stayed with our friend (and previous owner of Billabong) in Yamba (near Mooloolaba) for three weeks (lovin' the land life) before returning to Billabong and our life at sea!

It seems we covered a lot of ground, and saw a lot of sights ... so much that we figured we'd deviate from our normal journal style entry, providing picture journals of our trip instead.

The maps below highlight our travels in black.  Links bring up various photo-journals, divided in hopes of making them manageable in both size and attention span!

Road Trip Summary:

Brisbane to Melbourne:
          2/20/07 - 3/13/07
          3,650 km driven

          3/14/07 - 3/22/07
          1,145 km driven

Sydney Area (just hanging):
          3/22/07 - 3/28/07

Sydney - Mooloolaba Return Drive:
          3/28/07 - 3/29/07
          1,060 km driven

Total:   5,585 km

Continue reading "Brisbane to Melbourne, Tasmania, and Back Summary"...

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Southport back to Mooloolaba

February 10 - 17, 2007

After almost eight weeks in Bum's Bay, Southport, Billabong was finally on the move again!  It was a quick trip; our goal to get to Mooloolaba so that we could leave Billabong and discover Australia by land.  It was also an uneventful trip; some rain & thunder, crab hunting with no results, lots of midges & mosquitoes, and a few anchorages to ourselves and other's shared with hundreds!

Our journey went something like this:
2/10:  Still in Southport, but out moved of Bum's Bay
2/11:  Morning visit to Tippler's, then moved on to Tiger Mullet Channel
2/12:  Stayed in Tiger for the day w/ lightning storms (did some crabbing, but didn't catch anything)
2/13:  Slipping Sands (rain & lightning)
2/14:  Russel Island
2/15:  Tangalooma, where we hooked up with old friends on Gypsy Wind
2/16:  Arrived in Moolooaba by the afternoon.  We were treated to a BBQ and hot showers!

2/17 - 2/19:  Got the boat 'put away', packed, and were ready to hit the highway!
Continue reading "Southport back to Mooloolaba"...

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Moving On

Current Location: Southport, Gold Coast, Australia
Current Position: 27º56.81' S 153º25.39' E
Next Destination: Mooloolaba

Well, our weekly BLOG hasn’t been so weekly. I guess we’ve just been too busy; yes, I know what you are thinking … how could two people without jobs or any real commitments ever be too busy! So I won’t bother to try and explain. However, instead of writing our BLOGs we have been working on a catch-up web update. This will be posted in the next few days (www.neoscape.com/billabong). You can go their for the latest fun stuff; dating all the way back to Noumea and including our travels in Australia through January.

Tomorrow we finally pull anchor and leave Southport. It has been nice being in one location for so long, we’ve truly gotten familiar with the place and it has been terrific to be settled for a bit. We’ll spend the next week or two heading back north, to Mooloolaba, where we will leave Billabong for six weeks to do some land travel.

Continue reading "Moving On"...