Day 33 - 37 Coffin Bay
Trip Start Dec 01, 2008
91Trip End Nov 08, 2009
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Where I stayed
Coffin Bay Caravan Park
The weather has become increasingly windy and we are happy to be moving on from our exposed site at Port Lincoln. We have heard wonderful things about Coffin Bay and are keen to spend some time there.
Driving into Coffin Bay (only 10 songs, in kids speak) the views are lovely, much different to any place we have been to as yet. It looks like a quaint fishing town and we soon realise there may not be too many areas for Greg to swim any distances, as fishing boats dominate the bays. Oyster beds are a plenty also, I am looking forward to trying them. Kellidie Bay is the smaller bay within Coffin Bay that the town overlooks and the National Park is a massive land mass beside this small fishing area. Most of the National Park can only be accessed with a 4wd.
Check in time is usually 2pm in caravan parks and as we arrive at 11am, we decide to kill some time at the coffee shop before attempting to get a site
Once at our huge grassed site, we have a quick lunch so we can get out and explore. The National Park will likely be our next free camp; we were only able to book 2 nights in the caravan park as it's full. There is a 14km sealed road into the National Park and the only camp area (Yangie) that allows caravans has one site available, will we have to take our chances. The swimming area at Yangie is ordinary and we cannot access the main part of the National Park as we are in a 2wd. We may re-assess staying here.
The Yacht Club has dinners on Friday and Sunday nights with a menu of four main course choices, buffet salad bar and desserts. It is run by members who have volunteered their time to make some money over the busy holiday periods
Given the pub is tucked away off the main road in no-mans land (without a tab) the Yacht club is the hub of Coffin Bay in prime position overlooking the main jetty and swim area. We decide to eat here Sunday night and make note to come at opening time, 5.30pm.
Greg has bought me 1doz oysters for dinner for $7.50 from the kiosk beside the caravan park. The opening of the shells provides some laughs!
Next day, after his usual morning walk, Greg is trying to bustle us into the car still in our pyjamas! He's big Kev excited and we have to come quickly 'Seize the moment' he says (I haven't the heart to tell him the expression is 'Seize the day'); he is on a mission to get us up and out before breakfast. Begrudgingly we comply and he drives us to a beach he has just discovered. The tide is in (a rarity for us as we find most out when we are seeking a swim in S.A) so conditions here are perfect.
An older style shack overlooks this little cove, fittingly called Port Douglas and we all jump in to swim, except Max, he doesn't seem interested (normally Max is second in after Greg), perhaps he is still half asleep
We decide to stay for a few more days and seek to extend our stay at the caravan park. Unfortunately it means moving sites, but they are all grassed and large, so we figure it's only a small inconvenience. We leave the beds out and top up and re hitch the van to move three sites across, facing the opposite direction. The kids even help move all our outdoor gear over. There are heaps of kids here, so Maegs and Max are more than happy to stay.
The pontoon, 50m from shore and beside the main pier, is an excellent swimming area. The kids can swim out to it with no flotation devices and jump off readily. They have become more adventurous each day stay and are now both jumping from the pier like the big kids. Maegan has especially impressed us with her bravery, jumping from the higher of the two jetties!
A market at the community hall was a highlight on Sunday, as was fishing from the pier. Greg had struck up a conversation with a bloke on the pontoon yesterday and watched him pulling in heaps off fish while we were swimming, so he dashed to get the rods to join his new friend in the hope of catching fish also. The kids and I joined them later that afternoon
I took the kids back to the van to get ready for dinner at the Yacht Club and brought back clothes for Greg to change into. However, he had no intention of leaving, having not had any luck as yet. The couple beside him were pulling in Trevally Willy Nilly by now, there were fish everywhere, yet Greg still hadn't got one. Finally when they stopped biting I managed to drag him off, it was closer to 7pm. The Yacht Club was packed - worse than Friday night, we joined a group of kids on a long table and ordered immediately, but the meals took 45mins. So much for arriving early to avoid the rush!!
Next day Greg left to fish from the pier early, he gave up exercising still intent on catching dinner and landing a fish to rival mine. He returned with one small Tommy Ruff and talk of the ones he threw back or used for bait. We couldn't fob off Max's wish to play Mini Golf any longer (Coff 'n' Putt) resides it was directly beside the caravan park.
I was scorer to save money (B.N's idea) - glad I did in the end, but more on that later
Suffice to say I am pleased to report that Maegan won by 2 shots to Max and Greg was a distant third. She was pulling shots out of her backside. The win did her confidence the world of good, I was proud for her beating the boys.
Back at the park Max made a friend Jacob that night (our last here), his mum Mel wandered over to check on him as they were playing out front of our van. Greg and I started chatting, her husband Will (a pom) and their two children 14mth old Charlie and Jacob (5) are on their way back to the eastern states having lived in W.A for the last 8yrs. We invited them over for a drink (our last bottle of Red wine ...a Henscke at that) to swap notes about our travels thus far. It was a fun night, they proved good company and Charlie is a crack up. It's a shame that we meet on our last night we might have spent more time otherwise.
Later that evening we received a knock on our door, it was our neighbour, he has lost his car keys and little Charlie had been in their annex playing, the insinuation was clear...It was quite an adventure for Maegs and Max with their torches (thanks Wayne and Gill), we abandon the search after 30mins or so and intend to begin again in the morning. Soon after, he knocks on the door again all sheepish, (they were in his jacket pocket) with an impressive bottle of Penfolds in hand. Turns out he is assistant wine maker at Wolf Blass!
We are off to Farm Beach (16km away) in the morning to free camp for a few nights.