A Rainbow Beach man has just completed a seven-day solo canoe trip to Moon Point on Fraser Island and back.
Murray said: “I just wanted a bit of an adventure. I wanted to explore the western side of the island, particularly Moon Point. I wanted to test myself out again, push myself, put myself out in nature and get away from the comforts of home. I wanted to be free with a bit of adventure thrown in.”
He took off in an outrigger canoe with paddles, a sail and stand-by emergency outboard. He had hoped to mostly sail and paddle if conditions were favourable. On board he had safety gear, water, his food, a saucepan, gas burner and his two-man tent.
“I left Bullock Point hoping to paddle and sail all the way but the northerlies came in and I had to use the outboard on the first day. I set up my camp each night about 20 metres off the beach due to crocodile warnings. I just had a little two-man tent and a gas stove.
“After the first night at Garrys Anchorage the wind was favourable so I popped the sail up and got to Kingfisher Bay by 12.30 where I picked up more fuel and water. The wind was gushing at about 30 knots by then and I could see Moon Point so I made a run straight for it. It was pretty wild – I was surfing and had to keep momentum up.
“After exploring the next day I decided to move the camp up to the leeward side of the point to get away from the wind and settled there for two days.
“I motor sailed across to the mainland using the sail and motor down the straits and basically island hopped on the way back. Storms were predicted, so when I got back to Kingfisher Bay, I fueled up again and managed to get into Ungowa where I camped that night.
“The next morning there were bad sandflies, a low tide and it was messy, so it was crucial that I catch the tide to help me get home.
“The motor started then stopped and wouldn’t go again. I had to paddle from Ungowa to Garrys Anchorage and there I met up with a fellow who helped me with the outboard but we couldn’t get the motor going. In the end he towed the canoe over to Poona for me and invited me to stay the night.
“I was disappointed I didn’t make it back under my own steam, but that’s why the motor, sail and paddle are important. You have to keep your eye on the elements and use them to your advantage.
“It was all part of the adventure and a test of courage, stamina and the ability to deal with nature.
“I am planning another trip next year and part of the idea was to get people out of retirement and pool our skills. It would be nice to get all these men together – get guys out into doing stuff again.
“Anyone interested in getting out more, please get in touch and thanks everyone for helping me with the journey.”
Text or ring Murray on 0479165810 if you want to catch up.