It rained most of yesterday so Bear did an oil change and I pottered about the estate. Today began with rain but late morning saw a gap in the clouds, off we went for a bimble. The sun forgot to shine but no matter it’s still warm. Ashore the tide was out so Bear settled Baby Beez with her anchor out, then for the rest of the beach.
Bear went to lean against the memorial and oops......Back in position for a pose.
Sawmill Beach sign and behind it a picnic area and information boards.
This letter marked the end of a chapter of Whitsunday Island history. In the early 1890’s, John Withnall built a sawmill on flat land here at Sawmill Beach. The steam-operated mill used water from a low dam John constructed across Sawmill Creek. Felled by hand and sawn by blade, the island’s hoop pine was shipped to Bowen and Mackay as Queensland grew into the new century. John’s small workforce included some local Ngaro men. The work was hard and hot.
The steep terrain usually allowed felled trees to be “shot” (slid) down to the water’s edge. In places bullocks and trams carted logs to the water. A steam winch then pulled the floating logs up for sawing. After fourteen years of hard work and sweat, a dwindling supply of quality and profitable timber prompted John to dismantle the mill and shift to Townsville.
Today, rusted tram rails can still be seen, hinting to a past life as they slowly corrode. The old dam lies broken, affording no barrier to summer rains washing to the sea, while hoop pines stand proud above the rainforest, never again to fall from axe or saw.
After reading, we went back out across the beach and found the track to Dugong Beach.
Up some steps and we followed a well maintained path through some very twisted trees.
Bear’s newest friend, curled in an offended fashion, pooped and began to uncurl...........
So many trees to look at.
Bear hugged a massive hoop pine with an impressive termite motorway.
We popped out at Dugong Beach.........
............and explored for a while. Then back to the track passing the campsite, toilets and picnic area.
The floor of the forest was fairly clear. We could hear the rain but with this cover very few drops hit us. The wonderful thing about this side of the island NO SAND FLIES..........and no mosquitos.
Fungi in all shapes and sizes.
Spotting these two curlew in their camo jackets was difficult.
Back on our beach, we looked at the creek, then it started to rain. We got back to Beez and the heavens opened for the rest of the afternoon.
The clouds were still heavy at sunset.
ALL IN ALL SUCH A DIFFERENCE TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ISLAND
NICE TO HAVE A LEG-STRETCH IN A VERY RAINY FOREST