Friday, April 29, 2011

Camping days 3 and 4

walking on the beach
Unfortunately day 3 was a rough one for me. I was up first, as expected, because I’m a morning person. I went for a nice walk down the road, looking at all the beautiful trees in the national park. When I got back, Jenny was up and then we walked to the beach and it was finally getting warm outside. We got some nice pictures and then headed back to the campsite to wake up Jason and pack up.
I was quite hungry after walking around for nearly 3 hours and only had a granola bar. We stopped at a cafe and I got pancakes and pineapple juice. OMG that pineapple juice was amazing! The pancakes were also delicious and such a perfect brunch before we headed to our next location.
After driving for a bit over an hour, we met up with 2 other people that Jenny and Jason knew from their class and we headed to Stockton Beach, which is a large beach of mostly sand where you are allowed to do some 4 wheel driving with your car. Unfortunately for me, the up and down driving on sand dunes was not fun for my stomach, but I survived it. We drove up to the top of the largest sand dune and sand boarded down. The hardest part of sand boarding is walking back up, especially this sand dune as it was really steep. They need some lifts, like ski lifts. Then we had a jumping competition to see who could get the farthest down the sand dune by jumping from the top. I was scared at first so I did a practice jump and then I jumped again. I didn’t get as far as some of the guys, but it was tons of fun! It felt like I was flying for a moment. (credit to Jenny for these photos)

jumping off the sand dune

most fun of the day!

We then headed to a big open area among the sand dunes and tied a rope and handle to the car and sand boarded while holding on to the handle. Basically it’s tubing on the sand and a car instead of a boat. That was the most fun I had that day. I did get a face full of sand one time, but for the most part, I did pretty well even with the tire bumps. (pics)
Next we headed down to the water, got wet and went under a few times and then we went to find the exit from the sand dunes. Everywhere you turned there was sand and no clear signs of where the exit was, we just drove towards the way we came in and eventually found it.
By the time we left, it was already getting dark and I was quite tired. I was practically asleep and then we arrived at a grocery store to get food for the next day since it was Good Friday and everything would be closed for the holiday. It makes sense that stores are closed on Good Friday, but at home, stores are still open on Good Friday. I even have to attend school on Good Friday in Buffalo, because the only holiday we get off is Martin Luther King day in January in addition to our 1 week break. Aussies get their holidays though, including Easter Monday and since Anzac day (an Australian holiday) fell on the same day as Easter Monday, most stores gave employees Monday and Tuesday off or they had limited hours.
Anyway from the store we drove to our campsite, but no one was exactly sure where we were going and it was dark. I curled up in the backseat with all the stuff trying to sleep as we eventually got to Watagans National Park, but then we were driving on twisty turny dirt roads, so it was a rough ride and after an hour or so of it, I couldn’t really take much more. We stopped for a bit and I switched to the other guys car which was so much smoother. It was like going from bump after bump to almost driving on a road again. We continued to drive for another 15 minutes or so and then found a spot, finally!! The boys set up my tent first so that I could get some sleep and feel better. I was sad I couldn’t join the others around the camp fire, but I was just way too tired and not feeling well.

            The last day went better, In the morning I was up at 7 or so and looked at the beautiful view. I had no idea where we were and what part we were looking at, but it was still a great view. I was amazed how far we had gone as I was trying to sleep in the car last night. Jenny and Jason were still sleeping, but I hung out with the other 2 guys, Liam and Jim.
the view
            Jim started up a fire, which took a while because the leaves were a bit damp from the bit of rain we got overnight. I was snacking on all the food we had as I was hungry, since I also had skipped dinner last night. Jim cooked some sausages for breakfast.
As he was cooking, 2 people showed up to use another grill and then another car drove up, then another and another. Being Good Friday, it seemed that a family was having a nice picnic for the holiday. They had a sweet Boxer dog who was so adorable. He wanted the sausages we were making. He was so cute and well behaved and I really wanted to take him home.
            Eventually everyone was up and we ate and hung out by the fire for a bit and decided what to do before heading back to Sydney. We headed to see a dam in the national park. Jenny and Jason were crazy and jumped into the cold water.

on the bridge viewing the dam
            After that Jason and Liam had to be boys and drive around in mud puddles. I took pictures on the side and watched as I was not into the steep climbs and crazy driving. It was interesting to watch though.
            From there, we went on a journey to find the highway and exit the national park. I’m pretty sure that took over an hour as we had no idea where we were going really (seemed to be a pattern of the last 24 hours) and the GPS didn’t even give a real road for exiting. Eventually though we found the highway and repacked the cars and I moved back to Jason’s car with all the stuff. It only took a bit over an hour and I stayed at Jenny’s while she went to a dance class and when she returned we watched some tv and then headed to bed.
The next morning I went back to DLC for Easter weekend and back to reality with finishing assignments and studying for my busy 3 days of school I had that coming week.

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