Saturday, May 2, 2009

Day at the beach

This is East Wallaby Island. We didn't see any wallabies despite desperate attempts by the pilot/tour guide. No one was too fussed.

We spent the day on the beach at Turtle Bay (below).

Looks beautiful and secluded, but all the charter companies go there and set up on the same corner of the endless beach. Probably because the pilots are all mates.

I didn't last long snorkeling because it kind of freaks me out because I don't know what I'm going to encounter, and the water was too cold for swimming, so I got to know the other people on the flight and the pilots (who I later went to the pub with).

It may have been dreadfully boring had there not been some unintended entertainment - the pilot from Kalbarri Air Charter lost his keys on the beach! The other pilots couldn't believe it - they always leave their keys in the plane. I mean, there are maybe 20 people on the island, tops, and all the pilots there have their own planes, so no one is going to steal one!

This guy walked up and down the beach for an hour while his passengers waited at the plane. Eventually they came to help look and we did a bit of scouring too. We felt bad for the poor guy but it was pretty amusing too.

It could have been a lot worse though - they could have been on a different island without other charter companies and pilots around to lend a hand, and one without mobile phone coverage (yes, 80 km from the coast we still had some coverage thanks to a tower on one of the inhabited islands).

Anyway, the keys were never found and the people on the Kalbarri half day tour ended up with a full day one as they waited for the company's chief pilot to fly back to Kalbarri from Perth, find a spare set of keys (if they existed) and then fly to the island.

This is an osprey's nest on the island. It has been built over a 50 year period. You may be able to spot a lightbulb, a fan belt and some bones.

This is what it looks like on the island - quite desolate. And to think that shipwreck survivors lived on one of these for 11 months...