Jan 18- Bear Gully National Park

After a quiet night, we did the walking track along the creek up to the actual waterfall. It was a nice ferny walk with good views of the small waterfall as we approached. Josh took one of the telescopic fishing rods in case any of the supposedly resident trout were spotted (none were and a quick fish in one of the bigger pools was unsuccessful – wrong time of day or something…nothing to do with the rod-wielders angling abilities).

Ferny grove along turton falls walk

We wound our way out along the road north-ish and looped around the back of the ranges through grazing country quite lush and many dairy fams. We headed down to Venus Beach and thought the caravan park might be an option. Always check before paying for a site because this park was hot, no shade at all and a fair walk to the beach – admittedly the local council runs a free shuttle bus from town to the beach to ease parking/traffic congestion – but we decided against the caravan park. The takeaway shop on the other side of the road, however, did get our patronage and we settled in for some fish and chips – actually lots of their menu looked good. Out the front they had a giant chess board with big pieces and as the man started setting up, the boys – fascinated by the oversize game – helped carry the pieces out from the shop and put them in place. Their reward from the man for helping was a free slushie in a horrible bright blue colour- but they loved it.

We got a good park down at the beach and went down for a swim. Lots of people and with a high tide and forceful waves the lifeguards had their hands full keeping an eye on it all. They took the rubber ducky out for a run and there were some dodgy moments as they hit the bigger waves – one guy fell out but managed to hold onto the rope and flick himself back in. The beach had a lot of pipis and there were tourists down there with buckets for just that. There were signs indicating a reduction in the bag limit to one small bucket per person so maybe they are being over-collected.

On the GPS out of town we saw a 4WD track leading down to the beach and thought we might find a camp behind the dunes. As we nosed our way onto the track it seemed a bit overgrown and after probably 150metres of very slow going we decided the blackberry scratching, damp areas and very tight sandhill cuttings might have beaten us. It was the large wombat burrow in the middle of the track that made us reverse up and find a turning point.

We headed on to a place called Walkerville where there was a camping reserve. That camp was full but the woman running it said there were two campsites available in the national park down at Bear Gully. We jumped on the net and booked and paid. We had a great site just behind the dunes. The beach was mainly rock platforms with small patches of sand and pebbly sections. We had a quick swim in about a metre of water in a rockpool that was sheltered from the waves. Later in the evening we rock-hopped and walked along the beach which was gritty coarse sand with lots of seaweed built up. We found a great little cove which had no seaweed, the most beautiful sandy beach and nice gentle waves. We looked out across the bay to Wilsons Prom way in the distance. Lach named it “Lachie Amaze Beach”. We had a great swim, perfect temperature, sun setting.

Sandy beach bear gully campA great time.

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