Since leaving Mission Beach we have been ‘free camping’ down the Bruce
Highway in Queensland and have found some nice spots to stop.
The first night was spent at a place called Rollingstone, just 5km from
Balgal Beach and about 60ks out of Townsville. This was a big shady campsite
just off the main highway, but also far enough away not to be noisy. There
were toilets and cold showers as well as a river and plenty of space to
It was our first night of noticeable rain – and also one of the nights when
I chose not to put up the flies… oops… At 11.30 it started and it lasted
around an hour – enough to make everything wet and soggy but not enough to
cause the camper roof to drip on us… thankfully… We woke to soggy ground
and a few wet clothes and shoes, but it could have been a heap worse!
The next day we went thru Townsville and Ayr and finished up at a little
spot called Home Hill. We pulled in for lunch and Ellie complained of a sore
tummy so we took her to the hospital where a RN saw her and suggested we
came back at 3.00pm to see a Doc. We booked the appointment, but of course
by 3 oclock she was as good as gold…
However we stopped at the Home Hill ‘Comfort Stop’ for the night. This was a
different kind of ‘campspot’ in that it was a street – a street that ran
parallel with the main drag and the railway. If you can imagine being
sandwiched between the busiest street in town and the railway line on the
other side then you could imagine it was quite noisy.
With trains pumping their horns every 60 mins or so it was a case of sleep –
wake – sleep – wake and so on…
Noise aside it was a decent spot. There was an ablution area with hot
showers and barbecues and power – a well set up little area and something
that would add to the economy of a town where plenty of businesses were
showing for sale signs.
Then we headed further south and finished up at St Helen’s beach campground.
It shows up in the Camps 4 book as costing $$, but it turns out no one has
been collecting for the last few years so it is actually a freebie. It is a
nice spot about 15km off the main drag with large campgrounds, big shady
trees and ablutions with cold showers.
The midges were biting and we were forced indoors but they disappeared with
the colder evening. Although we were right on the beach it was actually a
mangrove swampy type of area so it didn’t have the vibe you hope a beach
Free camping works fine so long as you can get a shower of some kind
somewhere! It’s when we don’t get a shower and start to feel grungy that we
know its time to check into a caravan park and ‘re-charge’. The only other
drawback is the absence of coffee.
Tonight (Saturday) we are at Seaforth, a whole 14km from St Helens… We
didn’t get far at all today, but when we arrived we saw a campsite right on
the beach with huge sites and at $17.00/night it seems pretty good value. H
We managed to find a powerpoint at the picnic area and have been giving the
coffee machine a bit of work. A few grey nomads have noticed and commented
lustfully, so I am thinking we might crank out a few coffees for the locals
I reckon BYO milk, cup and sugar and then a gold coin donation ought to be
fair enough so we’ll see how it goes…