Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Camping at The Basin

We just celebrated Anzac day in Australia.  Tuesday was a public holiday so we invited a few friends on an overnight camp out in Kuring Gai Chase National Park at The Basin campground.  Before we moved to Australia all I knew was there were some of the most poisonous snakes and spiders in the world so I did not bring one piece of camping equipment.  There was no way I was going to sleep outside.  After living here a year, adjusting, and seeing some of the most gorgeous camping spots in my life I couldn't resist. Luckily we have wonderful friends who were much more optimistic about the camping scene here then I was and loaned us some of their tents, and sleeping bags.
We had such a wonderful time at the Basin campsite.  You can either hike in or catch the ferry from Palm beach which is what we did.  There are wild wallabies bouncing around everywhere, a beautiful lagoon to play in, hikes including one to some amazing petroglyphs around 1000 years old.  At dusk hundreds of bats flew in which I thought was super cool until it was time for bed and the tree we were next to seemed to be their home base and they screeched at each other all night long.  That combined with wallabies and other critters scavenging our camp all night made it a little difficult to sleep but no worries we have kids and don't sleep anyway.  Other than that it was a really great site and the I think everyone had a great time.

Our camp set up in the background.

I love these trees, they are so perfect and beautiful.

One of Jason's hidden talents, making killer tin foil dinners.  It was fun having him teach me.

Early morning sunrise!

Dedicated young fisherman.

Wallaby fight...Kids in the background, "FIGHT, FIGHT, FIGHT!" LOL

Try to use the picture of the plaque as a guide but this shot is head on legs pointing down towards me.  The plaque describes this scene how the two peoples legs over cross as representing marriage and family.  You cant see above the body figures is a crescent moon and circled by flying wallabies and fish. 

The Lagoon  
Not sure what bird this is but I loved its yellow mask.  It did not love me...took forever to get it to look at me without running away.

Wallaby:  "hmmm maybe she hasn't noticed I stole her kids watermelon...

Wallaby: "aw whatever I am just going to eat it anyway."

Packing up to go when mike passed out from exhaustion after a killer tantrum. 
Our amazing group!

Waiting for the Ferry.  Zzzzz

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Amedee Island, New Caledonia

Amadee Island Snorkeling (Gopro3)
Our last port was Noumea in New Caledonia.  We decided last minute to take a day trip out to Amedee Island from there.  
Our boat docked at a shipping container yard. It was actually kind of pretty with all the different container colors, and there was this wonderful dance group singing, drumming and performing as we pulled into port.  Very cool! 

Amadee Island

So my mom semi warned us there could be some snakes on this island.  Also the staff let us know that don't worry even though they are highly venomous their fangs are at the back of their throat so even if they bite you, you will be fine. Fun right?  I was thinking there is no way we will see one, snakes usually avoid people right? Wrong! I have never seen so many snakes when I was not in a zoo.  They were coiled everywhere under chairs, leaves docks.  They were coming and going from the water pretty frequently.  If Jason would have obtained this knowledge prior I am pretty sure he would have not come or let our children come.  He HATES snakes! He saw one before me as I was coming out of the water and I could tell by his face something was wrong.  He was holding the kids and walking like he was getting off the island immediately.  I am grateful he faced his fear and decided to stay because the rest of the island was wonderful.  

We have also learned that Mikey has zero fear of snakes, and will run towards them or just stand by them as they are coiled watching them intently.  Neither of us were very encouraging which I am pretty sure made him want to do it more.

Can you spy the snake?

Freshly shredded coconut! delicious!

My dream is to own a sail boat some day and sail to all the amazing Islands in the South Pacific.  Loved New Caledonia, can't wait to go back someday hopefully soon.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Isle of Pines, New Caledonia

Isle of Pines instantly became my favorite the moment they put a crown on my head when we got off the boat!  Such a welcoming gesture, we all loved it!

 We spent most of the day on this beautiful beach, and you could snorkel around this isolated rock island.  Unfortunately the water clarity was terrible so we didn't snorkel very long there.  
 Before the crowds showed up. Paradise.

 My little fish! Calm warm water made for perfect swimming for the kiddos. 
Michael prefers a pool in an ocean style. 

 I blame Grandma for this. 100%

 Again sweet Jason ended up taking the boys back to the boat and my mom and I and even Aunt Janene this time looked for a better snorkeling spot.  We found a man with a van who said he would take us to The Natural Aquarium.  Seemed legit, and away we went.  We pulled up to this shack paid $10 and they pointed us in the direction to start walking.  We followed some crude signs about 15 minutes, trudging through a river, past biting flies and sand banks with 1000's of crabs but we made it! 

Low tide at the Natural Aquarium exposes this beautiful rock formation.  Its small but amazing.  Who knows how much longer it will stand.

My favorite giant clams with the most gorgeous colors.
 Like snorkeling in a salt water pool filled with coral and fish!

 Still shot of the beautiful Lion fish i swam with. Watch the video for much better footage of him.

  A very small section of the little crabs that were everywhere!!!