I’m currently exploring some of the amazing places around Rainbow Beach on the Cooloola Coast just south of Fraser Island.
Paul, Jason and I ambitiously set out to ride 100km along the sand from Rainbow Beach to Teewah via Double Island Point.
Thie climb up to the lighthouse from North Beach was hard work. We cooled off in the shade of the lighthouse before enjoying amazing views then rocketing down the tracks on the other side of the point.
We were running later than I had planned. I foolishly tried to increase our pace to make up for lost time, only to tire myself out in the hot sun.
In the end we decided to find a lake and go for a swim instead…
After trudging for a kilometre through thick deep sand we finally found a firm shady track leading to Freshwater Lake.
The water was crystal clear and deliciously cool.
We let the fresh water soak off the salt and sand for a long time before crawling out for a bite to eat.
Rather than battle it out with 4wd’s in soft sand we decided to stick to the walking tracks.
Although it was sandy in parts, the track was rideable because of the leaf litter on the ground kept the surface firm.
Riding in the shade was much more comfortable than baking on the beach.
After riding through the rainforest for another hour we had another swim at Poona Lake.
Two swims in one day is quite indulgent on our rides.
We intended to ride 100km but only managed about 50km in 8 hours. I’m glad we were flexible enough to alter our plans to suit the conditions.
We took a hike up to Carlo Sandblow.
This huge patch of sand is hundreds of metres across perched high above the waves atop the colorful sand dunes.
Because of the high location and strong upward breezes, it’s popular with hang glider enthusiasts.
We watched with awe as the glider pilots ran off the dunes below us and soared into the sky.
We stood on the edge of the towering dune looking down at the people on the beach a hundred metres below us.
Harrison got stuck on the edge. Luckily I was able to help him get out.
There’s a track leading from town up to the sandblow. Tim and I decided to follow it all the way to Poona Lake.
It must be the heat and humidity because I didn’t see any problem with swimming in the lake for the third time in as many days.
Tim had to get back early so I took the opportunity to ride out to the Cooloola Way to join up some gaps in my map.
I decided to try and get there via some off-road tracks and reduce my time on the hot bitumen.
The ride back was a bit hot so I couldn’t resist jumping into Seary’s Creek when I rode past it.
The water is crystal clear and very cold. Perfect on a hot day.
I could see fish and yabbies swimming around on the sand on the creek bed.
Today I hired a 4X4 / 4WD and took the family to a few of the places I had already visited on the bike.
This is the first time I’ve driven a car on the beach… and I really enjoyed it.
After a slow drive through the sand on Freshwater Track we drove down the beach to Red Canyon.
These striking ochre cliffs form a narrow canyon which twists away from the shore and up into the dunes.
We climbed up a sandy track through the canyon and got some great vews out to sea from high-up.
I drove slowly along the beach. We weren’t in a hurry and I didn’t want to damage the rental vehicle. So we were able to get out at a few places along the beach and just chill out.
Rainbow-colored cliffs stretching into the distance are a constant but stunning feature of the local coast line; I don’t think we’ll ever tire of them.
Today I rode as far north as I could from Rainbow Beach to the tip of Inskip Point. This marks the northernmost point on my Ride Network Map.
It was high tide, and I didn’t want to ride on the road so I just detoured down any interesting tracks I discovered to see where they led.
Luckily, every track I followed was rideable and ended up somewhere interesting. What more could you ask for?
I wasn’t in a hurry and took plenty of time to enjoy the views 🙂
Goodbye Rainbow Beach! We’ll definitely be back!
I’ll provide a more complete account of our adventure in a few days.