Welcome to Zenitude’s blog where you can follow us while we travel slow in our Lagoon catamaran. We update this blog frequently when we are cruising to let family and friends know where we are. Check the complete story of our adventures that started in 2006 when Zenitude became our home and cruising our way of life. Graciela and Oscar

Friday, 25 July 2014

Island Hoping from Brampton to Cid Harbour

It is a short distance from Brampton Island to Cid Harbour but there are many islands in between and we decided to stop at Goldsmith and Thomas for a day each. 

Everywhere you look is a beautiful scenery. We found Goldsmith full of marine life with fish jumping all over the place and many turtles coming to the surface to breath all around the anchorage. We anchored at the south tip of the island and it was just us for the night . Late afternoon we went ashore for a walk, the tide was quickly filling the beach but as it is very flat, it was a long walk from the dinghy up to dry sand in the beach.   

Goldsmith - Minne Hall Bay

Invasion at Thomas
The weather was settled and next day we sailed to Thomas. This island is especially attractive to Oscar as spearfishing is allowed and there are lots of good spots promising good fishing. We were having a quiet time at anchor with just a couple of other boats when a caravan of motor yachts invaded the place with loud music and shouts of excitement, and we thought, here we go, party tonight. But the peace of the place must have overcome them as very soon all was quiet, the music gone and nothing else was heard after that.   

On our way again the next day we had a look at Lindeman Island but the anchorage seemed exposed to the SSE winds blowing at the time and we decided to come to Cid Harbour instead. This is a much protected anchorage and very popular but it is wide with plenty of space for all. 

We are now planning our next exploration spots while we wait for a band of small squalls to disappear as it doesn't feel inviting to go anywhere at the moment. 
Cid Harbour

Friday, 18 July 2014

Brampton Island

After a good time in Mackay where we stayed a lot more than initially intended we left the marina this morning and are now at anchor in beautiful Brampton Island. The trip was short, just 20 miles with the wind dead on the back and seas on that washing machine style, just 15 to 20 knots wind  and in no time seas become quite messy in this shallow area. Happy to arrive and drop anchor in a quiet place just before lunch.

With forecast of 20 to 25 knots for the next couple of days we plan to stay here until Monday.

Sunset at Brampton
The beach at Brampton, beautiful and deserted

There is a resort but it has been abandoned

Beach Stone Curlew


Saturday, 5 July 2014

Around Mackay region

Mackay Marina is located a bit far from town and even though there is a bus that takes you to the main shopping areas we decided to rent a car to move around. We did a good weekly deal with Budget rental car in town. The bus took us to Canelands Shopping Centre which is a huge and modern mall. Mackay area seems to be booming and has grown in the past years so everything we need we can find here. From the mall was an easy walk to the rental car office. Mackay is a great place for provisioning before going island hoping and also there are several places worth visiting. 

Pioneer Valley and the Eungella National Park

With promises of seeing great subtropical rain-forest, waterfalls and the famous platypus in Eungella (pronounce it Yangala if you want to be understood) we left one morning for the 1.30 hour drive to the town of Eungella and from there on a winding scenic road to the park entry. The drive from Mackay is nice as it passes through the sugarcane fields with their charming country townships, where the farms are linked together by the local sugarcane train.

We took lunch with us and plenty of water, which was good as the only cafĂ© in the park was closed that day. 

We were not disappointed, it’s a magnificent rain-forest with outstanding trails and views, however no platypus came to swim in the Broken River to fulfill the tourist office promise. After lunch we walked an easy trail that took us to a beautiful water fall and as per the guide recommendation, once in a while along the way we stopped, looked up and listened to the birds.

On our way back we stopped at the Pinnacle Hotel to buy the famous Pinnacle Pies for dinner, they are worth their fame, big, juicy and delicious with a really yummy dough. 

Looking Up

Always .....
..... wanted to do this

Up the river
A wild turkey

No platypus but little turtles on the Broken River

Cape Hillsborough

Two days later we packed our lunch again and went to visit another national park a bit north of Mackay, Cape Hillsborough. You can follow an easy track to the top for outstanding views of the coast and then visit the beach where one can, at low tide, appreciate the huge tidal range and the work of art left by the hundreds of little crabs as the water recedes.

We were supposed to see lots of wild life including wallabies but the park was full of kids in school holidays and there was not an animal to be seen, except for the only one we saw eating in the road side when we left.  

Rewarded with the views from the top

Receding tide and the crabs work
Little crab art

Wallaby is out on the road