Man vs Wild @ Ningaloo - Part 3

Friday, Jul 10, 2015 at 10:00

ExplorOz - David & Michelle

Fri 10th - seemed a little less windy and David wanted to morning fish so 9am headed out with Leah. Winds still offshore and building I think...they returned safely but with no fish and said it was very rough and even scary. No one else took their boats out.

Chardae and I just sat around camp, me reading, she playing DS. I made custard to serve with the banana cake and tinned peaches. Then another round of canasta and then suddenly the wind dropped!

So we decided we better quickly get out and fish and try our luck again. I made a quick salad and BBQ'd the butterfly piece of the coral trout and then we all loaded up the boat. As we took off from shore I had the hugest smile on my face - the change in weather was just glorious and the water inside the reef was perfect.

But as soon as we popped through the channel between the reef to the other side, we found conditions outside the reef were rough with big waves, and even I was uncomfortable. Poor Chardae started crying from fear and so we turned back. It was like a timewarp back inside the reef everything was calm so we tried a little bombie fishing with the squid heads but caught nothing but the reef.

David and I read our books but he has finished his now so he played with girls on the beach flying kites, and driving the remote monster truck, and then they dug a huge hole. There is nothing better than watching your husband play for hours with the kids - especially when they are big kids now. It made my trip to watch them play together.

For dinner I made zuchinni and potato roti with beef fillet steaks.

Sat 11th July
Gale blew all night. Not enjoying this. We are enduring it without complaint as we know that Ningaloo weather can change in an instant and good weather always follows bad. Patience!

I'm nearly finished my 2nd book. First I read The Winter Sea by Di Morrissy. Nice easy holiday read but nothing literary special. Next I read Looking for Alaska by John Green, which was far better written and engaging even though its probably a teenagers book. I have also read an entire weekend newspaper and the latest issue of the Australian Ride cycling magazine with a special feature on the Tour de France. I've run out of books unless (think I've got some stuff on my Kindle though), so hope the windy weather that is keeping us confined to camp lets up soon.

Although it was still daytime, we were tiring of the wind so retired to the tents to watch a movie on the laptop - we chose Chappie. Very annoying Sth African accents (gang members) but Chappie himself was rather endearing in a mixed up way (a self-aware, self-programming Robot with "consciousness"). Not ideal for young minds like Chardae as it was full of swearing but other than that, the story was OK for her and she seem to enjoy it and it passed the time.

As the movie finished, the weather turned good! David and I took the boat out, leaving the kids at camp. They are old enough now but it feels strange to leave them knowing anything can happen - either to us, or to them or even Harry. The Ningaloo Station UHF channel 1 is handy at times like this - we leave them with a UHF handheld and we have one on the boat so we can be in contact if anything should happen and I'd already sussed out the neighbours and told them they could go to them if needed in an emergency (they are very sensible and know not to start cooking if an adult isn't around but anything can happen around a camp - it doesn't take much imagination to dream up a thousand hazards and my 14yr old is constantly talking of crazy daredevil ideas so one just hopes she doesn't choose the wrong moment to give one a try). Ok - so worrying aside, I was thrilled to get out on the boat with David.

Conditions were good and almost instantly after passing through the channel and setting the lines out we hooked up something so big that I used the rod holder belt to try to bring it in, but it was taking the boat backwards! I handed it over to David and he no luck with it either, finally instructing me to drive the boat backward so we could pull up directly over it. We figured it dived into a cave because it was on the bottom in 18m and eventually the line broke.

We were a little spooked and disappointed by what we'd lost, but after setting the lines out again, we quickly hooked up another one so I went for the belt again in the hope of a big one. In hindsight I lost valuable time doing that, because by the time I landed the fish I only had half a fish!!! A shark had bitten off the back half of it (fairly standard risk with bringing in mackeral at Ningaloo, and certainly not the first time its happened to us). Half a mackeral is better than no fish and so it was time to head back with our catch.

We came back with stormy skies brewing and we heard talk on the radio that confirmed rain was coming tonight and tomorrow. With no internet we had no access to weather reports but this info was coming from people that did have internet access so we listened and prepared for rain.

After our fish + chips dinner with Chardae's damper we prepared the camp for rain and went to bed. Trying to stay up late is hard but getting up before 8am is harder when its blowy and cold. But 12 hr sleeps is crazy! Wow holidays are restful.


David (DM) & Michelle (MM)
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Always working not enough travelling!
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