Travel

Cape Tribulation

IMG_8904So, this must be some kind of record – even for us – for the trip that has taken the longest to blog about – aaaargh – I honestly wish there were more hours in the day to do all the fun stuff I love!  Anyway, going back to our trip back in June exploring Cape Tribulation, the Daintree and Cooktown, here’s a short post on checking out Cape Tribulation. Continue reading

Categories: Camping, Qld Camping, Travel, Tropical North Queensland | 3 Comments

7 Things to Do these School Holidays on the Atherton Tablelands

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This time last year I wrote this post with some ideas for things to do on the Atherton Tablelands in the school holidays.  There is so much great stuff to do up here in our neck of the woods that I decided it was high time I put a few more of my favourite school holidays activities out there into cyber space!  With still a week of school holidays left – there is still plenty of time to get out and about and have some school holiday fun.

So, here’s 7 more things to do these school holidays on the Atherton Tablelands – Fealy Family style of course! Continue reading

Categories: Atherton Tablelands, Travel, Tropical North Queensland | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Jungle Surfing in the Daintree Rainforest

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jungle surfer – noun

“an adventurer who effortlessly flies from tree to tree, soaked in the ancient beauty of the Daintree Rainforest”

So, one of the best things about staying a bit closer to home for our Fealy Family Adventure this year, was less fuel costs meant a little bit of ‘treat’ money towards doing something really awesome on our trip.  After setting up camp at Lync Haven Camping Ground, we did some research (asked the campground receptionist, google, trip advisor) and decided that a Jungle Surfing Canopy Tour looked too good to miss and we sure weren’t disappointed!  A Cape Tribulation Sea Kayaking Tour and Cape Tribulation Hore Rides were close contenders, but we had to leave them for next time! Continue reading

Categories: Travel, Tropical North Queensland | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Sunday Snapshot – World Tourism Day

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Just a quick Sunday Snapshot post tonight.  Those of you who follow us on Facebook and Instagram will have seen that we have been joining in with World Tourism Day today.  We spent the day at Palm Cove – the kids loved the time at the beach and I got to take part in an ‘Instameet’ (gathering of instagrammers) and meet a few other social media junkies from Tropical North Queensland!  I love Palm Cove and I have blogged about it before here, so not much more to say really other than here’s a couple more favourite shots from the day!  Oh – and go and check it this cute video Matt took of Kipp loving the beach on the Blue Sky Produce Instagram handle. Continue reading

Categories: Sunday Snapshot, Travel, Tropical North Queensland | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

All Terrain Camper Trailer

So after our little trip round Oz (yes we were stopped half way), we ended up in Mareeba FNQ as farmers. Thats another story. But one of the first things we did was to sell poor karen Camper, our beloved Goldstream Camper. Karen was good, no Karen was great, and served as very very well, BUT, there were no doubt a few times on our trips that we would be making decisions about where we would go, or what route to take based on if we thought Karen could handle it……. often we took the easier way, and still managed to break Karen a few times.

We loved Karen Camper, she was just a bit soft...

We loved Karen Camper, she was just a bit soft…

 

So when we decided to sell Karen it was because we wanted a camper that would never hold us back ever again. After the usual 12 months of Matt researching and talking to, inspecting, as many camper as possible, he came up with 2 options, a “Cameron Camper” or and “All Terrain Camper”.

After witnessing the set up of every type of camper imaginable whilst on our trip, it was very clear to us, that if it was not easy, quick, and involve the least amount of poles/pegs/ropes possible, it would become one of those campers that gets parked beside the garage never to be used again.

Again, it also had to comfortably fit all of us, and you know, there are a lot of us.

It did not need bells and whistles, as we have always found bells tend to break and whistles tend to waste valuable beer time requiring constant fiddling and tweaking, only for them to eventually break, just like the bells.

Being both these options are made down south, we didn’t like our chances of finding a good second hand one up in FNQ, but as luck would have it, an All Terrain came up in Laura of all places, so after some wheeling and dealing, we bought “Black Betty”

Introducing Black Betty

Introducing Black Betty

Kitchen and Annex

Kitchen and Annex

Inside

Queen Bed for us, and oodles of room for the kids

At this point I’d like to just point out a couple of things about the All Terrains that make them different.

  1. 1 night set up (no annex) requires NO additional poles, pegs or ropes, nada, zilch, zip, zero!
  2. It is built for lifted and modified 4WD’s, in fact even with the aggressive lift kit on the Prado, it still sits a bit higher then the car.
  3. These 100% made in Australia, every last bit (except for the little plastic kitchen drawers I believe)
1 night set up take 10mins

1 night set up takes 10mins if that,

This thing is an absolute Tank, and there is no way it will stop us going anywhere. The whole thing is steel, there are no timber cupboards, no plastic fittings, no fancy pants add ons, just steel and canvas.

Black Betty will go anywhere Peter Prado will go!

Black Betty will go anywhere Peter Prado will go!

One of the cool things about the story behind the All Terrains is that it basically came about from a family who enjoyed camping, but were constantly being let down by inferior camper trailers that were difficult to set up and use, so, HE decides to build a bullet (mortar shell) proof trailer, while SHE designed and created a practical, simple tent.

So what resulted is a trailer made by man with a tent made by woman. Trust me, it works.

Trailer: 100% aussie steel, 100% seam welded, everything over engineered, huge thick automotive door seals, solid 50mm square axle, simple leaf/shackle suspension (independent suspension is not all it cracks up to be, believe me), 2tonne genuine Trigg Hitch (not a Chinese knock off), mechanical override disc brake (electric brakes were the bain of my existence on our big trip). The trailer area is seperated into 2 parts, I’d say about 70/30. whilst I have to admit, this can sometimes be annoying because I cannot fit very long things in the trailer area, I soon realise how great a design this is once we have been camping at the beach, in the rain, for a week. The ability to seperate all the wet dirty stuff from all the clean dry stuff is a godsend.

Steel box up front, seperate box behind it, and then the big trailer area accessed from the back

Steel box up front, seperate box behind it, and then the big trailer area accessed from the back

Tent: No peg/pole/rope 1 night set up and the annex remains zipped on at all times, it just folds back over the tent and fastens to the other side with little velcro tabs (essentially means you have 2 roofs). For the annex set up, only 8 pole/rope/pegs are needed for the full annex, thats right, 8 poles is the FULL set up. All windows are true midge screen, and they all have a clear plastic layer on the outside so that you can actually still have light (i.e. all the windows open) during a storm/rain because the clear plastic layer is water proof. All windows can then be “shut” from the inside by zipping up a canvas layer inside, no need to go outside to drop a rolled up window down, PLUS, each window has a full sized canvas layer as the final outside layer as well that doubles as a little awning from each window if you like. There are big stitched pockets everywhere inside the tent (happens to be exactly 4, one each for the kids) for storage of books, iPad, headphones, teddy bears etc, along with a little table, full access to the front box, ventilation screens at the bottom, windows everywhere, and the pièce de résistance, a “moon roof”. Yeah, the entire roof above the queensize bed opens up so you can still experience sleeping under the stars, while knowing you have midge screen and zippered doors for the boogy man.

Windows and ventilation everywhere, and that moon roof!

Windows and ventilation everywhere, and that moon roof!

Window flaps can all be set up as annex

Window flaps can all be set up as annex, with a few more poles of course.

The Kitchen is a beautiful, full stainless steel jobby, with meters of bench space, sink, 4 burner, great storage, cutlery drawers….everything in its right place, even with a sunroof!

Kitchen

Kitchen

 

She’s not perfect, we have made many changes to Black Betty to really make her our own, and to also address a couple of design flaws, which, the new owners of the business have actually addressed in the new models, but the basics still remain, that this is an unbreakable, simple, very comfortable Camper that we can highly recommend.

 

Gone are the rather flimsy "scissor" legs

Gone are the rather flimsy “scissor” legs

Now Black Betty has long, strong, sexy wind down legs

Now Black Betty has long, strong, sexy wind down legs

Original poles on the right, the bent spigot was supposed to line up through a hole in the canvas to a hole in the steel frame for putting up the Annex. It never lined up.

Original poles on the right, the bent spigot was supposed to line up through a hole in the canvas to a hole in the steel frame for putting up the Annex. It never lined up.

So I used eye bolts and these nylon pole ends and now the annex take half the time to set up.

So I used eye bolts and these nylon pole ends and now the annex take half the time to set up.

And it is a bit more stable

And it is a bit more stable

Heavy gauge Anderson cabling for battery charging

Heavy gauge Anderson cabling for battery charging

Led strip lights in both compartments in the trailer

Led strip lights in both compartments in the trailer

Dual USB, ciggy plug and volt meter 3 way box at the end of the bed

Dual USB, ciggy plug and volt meter 3 way box at the end of the bed

Fuse box

Fuse box

New power outlets

New power outlets

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The only way into camp sites like this, is with a camper that will not hold you back.

The only way into camp sites like this, is with a camper that will not hold you back.

 

 

Categories: Camping, Modifications, Planning, Reviews, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bramston Beach

DSC_0146Here at last is the promised Bramston Beach post.  We (being my sister Beth and her family, my mum & dad and our Fealy Family – as well as a few ring-ins, the Kendalls, Tom and Worrell families, who stayed a night or two throughout our visit) spent a week at the end of January staying in a very old beach house at Bramston Beach.  We had a really good time, but it was very, very, very hot and we didn’t have air-conditioning.  Oh, and all the kids ended up with school sores (thanks Lexi!).  So, that’s just a bit of the reality before I show you some photos.  Here’s a few taken by my very clever cousin Sarah, from Sarah Kendall Photography, to set the scene of our week. Continue reading

Categories: Qld Camping, Travel, Tropical North Queensland | Tags: , , | 8 Comments

Granite Gorge – Mareeba

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We are into the last week of the school term here – yippeeeee!  I love school holidays and can not wait to have a break from lunch boxes, uniforms and after school activities!  Of course there will be some fighting and far too many ‘I’m hungry’s’, but I really am looking forward to having all the kids at home for a big break from routine! We don’t have a lot planned for these holidays as Matt will be very busy with Mango Madness here on the farm, but we have a visit from the Townsville cousins and the Perth cousins to look forward to, as well as a week away at the beach in January, so still lots of fun to be had!

I am so behind with my blogging that I haven’t even posted about the great day out we had at Granite Gorge, just outside Mareeba, with the Brissy cousins last school holidays at the beginning of October!  So, here’s the details now in case you want to make a visit out there these holidays. Continue reading

Categories: Atherton Tablelands, Qld Camping, Travel, Tropical North Queensland | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

A Morning Walk at Mission Beach

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I’m finishing off my series of posts about Mission Beach with this one.  We’ve shared about the Mission Beach Sunset Sail and the Mission Beach Wedding, well now this is a Mission Beach Morning Walk!

Those of you who have kids or have had them, will most likely agree that going on holidays with kids is not always a walk in the park!  One of the things that always happens when we go away with our kiddos is that they don’t sleep well.  Particularly when we have a baby in the mix!  It always seems to take a few nights for them to settle in to their new beds and surroundings before they go back to sleeping right through the night and not waking up at the crack of dawn in excitement at being somewhere different!

Well – we had kind of forgotten all this as our older three were pretty much past this stage or had become great travellers after our trip around Oz last year!  Enter our now five month old baby Kipp and we were given the ‘parents with baby on holiday’ rude reminder!   Continue reading

Categories: Travel, Tropical North Queensland | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Adels Grove

DSC_0459Oh dear – I have just realised that we never finished telling you all about our two week trip away in June/July!! Ooopsy Daisy!!!  Right, back to it then – there’s a couple of awesome posts to come!  So, while we explored Lawn Hill/Boodjamulla National Park we set up base camp at Adels Grove Camping Park.  It was a lovely shady campground with plenty of room for everyone.  No designated sites – just find a spot wherever you liked. As we mentioned in our Lawn Hill post – there is no internet connection available at Adels Grove but the shady sites outweighed that for us as even in winter it was very hot at the National Park!!  Just a word of warning though – it would be very difficult to get much sun on your solar panels in the Adels Grove Campground as most of the park is covered by the leafy tree canopy!  The Top Campground at Adels Grove does allow pets and generators, but it is much hotter and no where near as pretty and leafy as The Grove campground.

Here’s a little bit of trivia for you – the Adels Grove Park was originally taken up by the owner as a Botanical Garden and over 1000 species of exotic and native plants, shrubs and trees were planted there.  The Botanical Gardens in Brisbane still has 536 different samples of seeds sent to them by the original owner!  This really explains the beauty of the campround here!  We camped for three nights at Adels and really enjoyed it. Continue reading

Categories: Camping, Qld Camping, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Port Douglas Wildlife Habitat

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So, it’s official – we can now tick off being world record holders from the bucket list – woot, woot!!  What am I on about?  Well, on the 4th of October the kids and I and the cousies, took part in the world record breaking Queensland Instameet at the Wildlife Habitat in Port Douglas.  What the heck is an ‘instameet’ you ask?  Well, you can read this post on the official Queensland travel blog, but basically, “an Instameet is where people gather in a pre-determined place, at a set time, to take photos then upload them to Instagram. That’s it really”.

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We had a really good time, but before I share the story of our day – here’s a few stats for you.

Continue reading

Categories: Travel, Tropical North Queensland | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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