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gday, we just got back from our trip up north to Fraser. We left from Melbourne on Boxing day. I am sure Fraser has been well documented before but hopefully there is some info for anyone looking to go!

The floods were our biggest enemy (and everyone elses as well) this trip. Our plan was to head up through Dubbo as we wanted to visit the Dish at Parkes. We got there easy. Next day I checked the RTA and QLD Road Authority and all roads to Brisbane were open. So off we went. We made it to Goondiwindi and headed towards Toowoomba, but at Millmerrin we were stopped. Every road out of town were flooded at least a meter deep, so we had to turn around to Goondiwindi and then make our way to the coast, hoping not to get cut off. We stayed the night at Tenterfield. Next day we got through to Lismore and were told there was one road left to Brisbane, so off to Bangalow we went, and jumped on the Pacific all the way up to meet our friends in the Sunshine coast.

A barge leaves from Rainbow beach, to the south of Fraser, and also at Kingfisher Bay, to the West of the island. We chose to get to Rainbow beach, via Teewah Beach. Due to tide times (a big part of a fraser trip, make sure you get times for every day), we had to leave early, but we had to wait a fair while for the small ferry from Noosa to Teewah, and such our travel times got stuffed around a bit. we were on Teewah heading to Rainbow beach at the time of low tide, but knew that it was incoming soon. We then got word from another driver that the waters were much higher this month, there was a very narrow time window to get through, and we missed it. We had to take an inland track to Rainbow beach. The track was fairly muddy, nothing too hard but 4lo was used in some spots. We eventually got to Rainbow and had lunch.

So our times were late by 3 hours now, but we headed to Inskip point and jumped on the Manta Ray over to Fraser Island. You DO NOT have to book this barge. it operates from 6:30am to 5:30 pm, and there are two of them which shuttle back and forth. there is also another company operating there. The barge costs $90 return for a car, or $150 return for car with trailer. Because we were nearing high tide, the cars at the other side of the island were too scared to cross over to where the barge is, and as a result, the barge tried to get to them but beached himself. We had to cross in the tide to get over, and then were told that the inland track was the only way for a while as the tide was too high. I think that this was a bit misleading, as we never saw the tide come right up at the south of the island, but i guess we were playing it safe. The inland track was in horrendous condition. Potholled and corrugated, it was rough going for about an hour, until we got onto the sand.

To drive on Fraser you need a vehicle permit, available over the internet. With this, you can camp anywhere in the signed beach areas along the 75 mile beach (east coast), or you can book campsites as well. We decided to book a campsite at Waddy point, up near Orchid beach, the most northern part of fraser for amenities. After that, there is a Sandy Cape right up north, but that is a remote drive, one I would like to do one day with a bit of planning.

Driving up the beach, we found it easy to sit on 80kph down on the hard sand when the tide had gone out a bit. We still had 2 hours till full low tide, but the sand was smooth enough. The washouts were very small, only 2 or 3 where we had to slow right down. Everyone on the beach was responsible and courtieous, indicating when passing and slowing down for the 30kph zones. You do not need a sand flag as it is so flat. I drove in 2wd for the majority of the trip. Eventually you get to Eurong township, where there is resorts, bakery, shop, toilets, and access to the inland tracks which lead to the numerous freshwater lakes such as lake mackenzie. Eurong is well setup, and has credit facilities and fuel (at $1.88 p/liter). My ute with 175 litres had more then enough left in it from the mainland, and i would suggest taking as much with you as you can, unless you are staying for more then 2 weeks. We had lunch and set off again, after pulling a lexus out of the bog infront of the bitumen access to town. A small 30 kph zone is on each side of town, and beach camping both sides as well. We got to Happy Valley which also has fuel, before heading to Waddy Point.

Waddy Point is a great camping area, which is gated to stop dingoes getting in. You need bookings for the area. There is a ranger station there, plus Waddy resort not far away, which looks great. The camping area has showers ($1 coin for 5 minutes), flushing toilets, mirrors etc etc, water taps (not for drinking), tables, and designated car parking areas. There is also designated areas for camper trailers, make sure you choose the right one at booking time). No real complaints about the area, was well maintained, however the water did get blocked for a day. We stayed there for 4 nights, then packed up and camped on the beach south of Eurong. Next day we decided to visit Lake Mackenzie, which was amazing. so clear yet so deep. The inland tracks were getting graded at the time, which was welcome cause of rain damage. the tracks have a 30kph limit. You can reach Kingfisher resort from these tracks. Later that day we headed back down the beach on low tide, all the way to the Manta Ray, and headed back to Rainbow beach.

Other info: Telstra Mobiles work on the island. I had full coverage most of the time, going down to 1 or 2 bars at waddy point, but calls were still clear, and I could even use my laptop with wireless broadband to check the Bureau of Meteorology for the weather updates, etc etc. Make sure you take plenty of cash AND coins. There are rubbish transfer stations around the island, so you can dump your rubbish. Stay off sand dunes, there is an on the spot fine of $2400 if caught by a ranger, luckily we were advised by some other campers when i was mucking around. there had already been some handed out.

The whole island really impressed me, it is well run and maintained, and I would recommend it to anyone, families, couples, etc etc. This was only a small trip and I am definitely going back for a few weeks, one day! If there is any info anyone wants, please ask away, and ill put some photos up later on.
 

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nissan
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Thanks mate, there is heaps of info on fraser but with the different conditions of late (all this rain) i am happy to read as much recent information that is available. ;)

Some handy info in your post, some of it i know about, but i just wondered as you mentioned cash and coins, what did you need/use the "coins" for ?





Would like to see your pic's when you have time to post them, will be taking almost all my camera gear when i go again (very soon ), so if its not raining i hope to get a few decent pic's
 

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Some handy info in your post, some of it i know about, but i just wondered as you mentioned cash and coins, what did you need/use the "coins" for ?
hey mate i probably overemphasised it cause up at Waddy point the showers ran off coins and eveyrone in the camp was running around looking for coins. i always try to take a small bag of shrapnel for such situations, but i ran outta 1 dollar coins. there is a town at orchid beach that we swapped over coins etc.

We were lucky with the rain that it stopped the day after we got there, was sunny for the week, then rained when we left!
 

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Cool, we won't need coins for showers as we are staying in a small house, we just need plenty of cash to buy petrol, as we are taking a 4.5L GU :rolleyes:




Get those pic's up ! (please)
 

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you weren't given misleading info about the bottom end of the island..at the moment Hook Point is the most washed out i have seen in a long time..unless you like driving in salt water you need to be about 2-3 hours either side of low tide at most to get around..

we went up there new years day and were 3 hours after low tide and only just got around, and we were on a small high tide

i have seen many vehicles lost on that point

dave
 

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you weren't given misleading info about the bottom end of the island..at the moment Hook Point is the most washed out i have seen in a long time..unless you like driving in salt water you need to be about 2-3 hours either side of low tide at most to get around..

we went up there new years day and were 3 hours after low tide and only just got around, and we were on a small high tide

i have seen many vehicles lost on that point

dave
ah well there ya go! definitely keep that in mind. And 80sly, we said hello at the carpark at lake mackenzie, had a quick chat to ya. hope ya had a good trip
 

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i saw dave (bolsy) too at eurong as we drove thru, looked like he was heading home, was all packed up with trailer on back, this was tues about 6th Jan, saw the number plates.
Just to clarify, the car permit does not entitle you to free camping on the beach either, the permit is for the car only, you still need to pay camping permits regardless of whether you stay in designated camp spots (such as dundaburra, central, waddy etc) or along the open beach.
 

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further re tides & hook point, if its been windy the wind can hold high tide up & even though its meant to be low can still be high, if you know what i mean. we had to change our route off the island so we could get home, we always go over from rainbow but due to floods roads were blocked, granville bridge closed etc so we booked on the barge from wanggoolba creek, this goes to river heads (same as kingfisher bay barge) and from there we got into hervey bay and then back to maryborough.
 
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