Spear Fishing on Kangaroo Island...almost
Kangaroo Island Travel Blog› entry 5 of 11 › view all entries
June 18th, 2006 – by: bdstans
All of my sleep woes and crankiness were washed away when i shuffled my way into the house to find Lorraine feverishly putting together a lunch for me and, at the same time, reminding me to bring a towel, a change of clothes, my camera, and of course, a smile. Have i told you all how wonderful this woman is? Not to be out done (or so he thinks), Bob is off somewhere scrounging up snorkel gear, fins, and even a couple pairs of swimmers (swim suits.
Bob lets me know that i'm absolutely out of my mind to be going skin diving this time of year, Lorraine grabs a backpack for all my gear, Rachel and Anthony show up, and i'm out the door. As i haul my gear across the lawn Anthony is attaching a yellow "L" to the grill of Rachel's truck to proclaim to the world that he is a "Learner" (according to Anthony it stands for "Loser") driver. Already I know that this is going to be an interesting day. The 3 of us squeeze into the cab of the pickup truck and we are off to Harvey's Return, a beach on the west end of the island.
Forty-five minutes and a few dirt roads later we arrive at the Harvey's Return Geological Site car park (parking lot...man, there's another one). Anthony has an extra 3/4 sleeve wetsuit for me and this makes me happy because now maybe just my legs, arms, and head will freeze and fall off instead of my everything. We grab our gear, hike down the steep , 500 meter trail to the beach, i take a leak on a tree, and a beautiful cove appears in the clearing, littered with sparkling rock formations the likes of which have never been seen by yours truly.
We put our gear down by a glittery rock so's we can scope things out and the sun begs us to remove our jackets...we gladly comply.
1st stop was a lighthouse where we didn't take the tour because who wants to pay to walk around a silly lighthouse? Tourists do! Which i am not, but i promised seals and crazy looking rocks, etc.
Next stop was Admiral's Arch, breeding grounds of the famed New Zealand fur seal colony in all its lazy, smelly glory. The seals were laying on the rocks, all of them, sleeping and being all together unimpressive. Good for them! Screw tourists! You can't really blame the seals though because you'd be pretty tuckered out too if you had been out fishing in the sea for the past 3 days. You can't get close to them like you could years ago; can't even set foot on the rocks, so all you can do is walk down the walkway, snap a few pictures, wait for them to do something interesting, give up, and leave.
Onto Remarkable Rocks. Really? Seriously, that's what they're called? "Remarkable Rocks"? Did someone come upon them and say "by jove, those rocks are quite remarkable." and no one thought they could do better? I vote that we change Admiral's Arch to "Smelly, Seals." It calls upon the same brilliant alliteration as "Remarkable Rocks" and, like Remarkable Rocks, makes it blatantly obvious what the tourist is about to see. Brilliant!
So the rocks are crazy looking and it is a remarkable mystery as to how they found their way into a cluster on the top of a cliff by the sea.
We headed to Vivonne Bay, voted the best beach in South Australia for reasons unknown to any of us. We were all starving so we ate lunch on the jetty and looked around at the bay wondering just what the criteria was for voting it best beach. It's much bigger than Harvey's Return, but not any more impressive. By the way, we've officially given up on spear fishing at this point because the clouds were playing "where's the sun?" and so it was very chilly out.
Anthony led us across the soft sand of Bales Bay beach to a cave on the other side of the first point. He had found it years ago on a family outing. It's not very large, the cave, but it is filled with thousands of shells. We sifted through them to find our favorites as the sun began to set. This is about the time when the camera batteries died and, in classic bryan style, i managed to bring dead replacement batteries. So, sadly, you don't get any pictures of the sunset walk back across Bales Bay...no pictures of my impressive display of squid netting in Tim's (Rachel's dad) metal dingy in about 2 feet of water, in the dark.
Now, while i may be surprisingly good at netting squid, i am not so good at all at shooting wallabies, despite my military training. Don't any of you get all up in arms about the wallaby extermination. We weren't doing it for the thrill (although Anthony surely enjoyed himself and was as excited as a puppy with 3 tails when he heard we were going to go shooting). The wallabies were destroying a woman's newly planted trees and there are so many of them (the wallabies, not the trees) that they are seen as an overpopulated, destructive rodent, not as a cute, little hippity hopping fluffy thing.
So i didn't get to go spear fishing, but that's quite alright because i netted squid like a pro and helped clean them and cook them and eat them. It was rad. Plus, Rachel's twin sister is coming to visit this weekend and we are planning on going camping and Anthony assures me that nothing will deter us from spear fishing this time. I'm excited.
Also, Teresa, an american girl, is suppose to arrive on thursday. She'll be doing the same thing i am..helping out on the farm and the like. Bob and Lorraine are great, but it will definitely be nice to have another young person around during the week. Unless she totally hates me or smells really bad like a seal.
Sunday i did laundry.
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