Thursday, September 2, 2010

Night 42 - Kakadu

We got the hell out of "bugsville" early (its about 2km`s past the Cooinda turnoff on the Kakadu Highway). It would have been a great spot as it had its own croc infested billabong (which was the breeding ground for the flying marauders) and a boat ramp to get amongst the barra.

Our next spot was Mary River Roadhouse campground which is right at the southern entrance to Kakadu on the Kakadu highway. It was a pretty plain sort of joint but as it was only a place chuck the van, we didn`t mind.

We unhooked the van and headed 12k`s back into Kakadu to the Gunlom turnoff. From there it was supposed to be 37k`s of 'sometimes corrugated' maintained gravel about 37k`s of bumpy hell!!! Our only times of relief was the 2 crossings of croc infested rivers that broke up the monotonous bounce. was all worth it. Gunlom was beautiful. A tall waterfall (that was only a dribble as its the dry season) into this big pool set against huge cliffs.

It looked just like Wangi Falls in Litchfield except there had been warnings of saltwater crocs in there. I had been told of the great swimming holes on top of the falls so Bailey and I decided to tackle the steep 300m path up to the top. It took a while with Bailey falling over only once up the top, but we made it. It was an absolute oasis up there with these deep holes dotting the creek up higher and higher and you just had to pick which one you would gracefully do a bomb into.

You can really get that "wet-edge" pool look going with a backdrop of 300m down looking over really was a treat.

We made it back down unscathed and headed back on our joyous ride back to Mary River Roadhouse.........I'm sure they had a gin still running out the back and probably made there own 'roadkill jerky'.

We did chalk up another wild animal to the list on the drive back home.....a feral donkey!!

Goodbye Kakadu....its been great!

Night 41 - Kakadu

This morning we checked out of the Kakadu Lodge and went straight to the famous Kakadu Bakery for the second day in a row. This tiny little bakery has some amazing cakes, pies and pastry's, I can see why people kept telling us to stop by. I was hugely impressed that they also had vegetarian pies and!

We were camping in the national park so we drove south down the Kakadu Hwy to our next stop. It cost $10 per adult and had really nice toilets and showers but no electricity or water.

We booked in to do a Yellow Water Cruise at 2.45pm and we were all very excited. The cruise went for an hour and a half and to be honest I was a little disappointed, I didnt think it was worth the $220 we spent.

The kids loved the crocs and Craig the bird nerd was in bird nerd heaven but I guess I was just expecting somethng more. We saw plenty of wildlife and of course the Yellow River Billabong and the East Alligator River are spectacular but I was hoping for some cultural facts and indigenous stories. Kai was cheif spotter, our tour guide was very impressed.....she even offered him a job!

We saw plenty of Sea Eagles...

The Jabiru

The Egret

The Rainbow Bee Eater

A million ducks

And a few mighty crocs

This Jabiru's nest is more than 10 years old and gets refurbished every year. It measures 3m wide.

After the cruise its time for dinner and more marshmallows.....Baileys tummy is getting bigger!!

We put the kids to bed and thought it would be lovely to sit outside and surf the net. Big mistake! The bugs were insane, millions of them and the computer was the magnet! Needless to say we had an early night.