The group... Me, Vic, Christian and Jannina from Germany, Louise from UK, Sabine from Germany, Rachel Keith Andrew Jenny and Neve from Ireland.
We had to get up at 6am to get ourselves dressed, watered and fed and packed for our 3 days on Fraser. We had to leave the hostel in the 4x4 by 7.30am because of the tides- you can only cross over to the island at certain times in the day. Though by the time we had packed everything on the roof rack with all our tents etc it was touching 8am. We had to pelt it to the ferry in the car but we made it fine. The hostel had given us an itinerary to stick to which took us to the best spots at the right times for the tides. One side of the island is a 75 mile long beach that is used as the main road. Its quite bizzarre to see lots of 4x4s driving up the beach trying to avoid the waves as they come in! Because we were a little late getting over on the ferry the tide was coming is and we had to be quick driving up the beach to reach our first inland road. You cant really go through the waves because of the salt damage it causes to the car and the loss of control so you need to stick to the hard sand. However there are washouts, which are where the waves have come in strong on the beach and need to go back out so they have created a kind of gorge with a sand step on each side that crosses the beach. These are filled with the sea water and you cant tell how deep there are from the car. So you have to get out and get someone to walk through it so you can see how deep it is. Most came up to people knees which wasnt too bad. To get through these though you have to go at it with a bit of speed which is hilarous. Up and down these gorges with water flying about in a 4x4 with 11 people in it and all our heavy kit on top... and all this done at more speed because we were late and the tide was coming in... I should also point out here that all of the shops in Rainbow Beach have a 'wall of shame' which shows photos of people getting the tide wrong and their cars basically stuck halfway out to sea, most wedged in the sand at a funny angle. And they all have the sign 'Dont let this happen to your car'. So that was going through everyones minds when we were pelting up 75mile beach. We cant get on the wall of shame!!! But seeing as im writing this to you now and not working off a huge debt in a hostel in Rainbow Beach you can tell we made it ok.
All that and we'd only been on the island for an hour! Our first stop was Lake MacKenzie. This is a beautiful fresh water lake in the middle of forest with a crisp white sandy beach stretching around it. The water is bright blue and it looks like a little paradise. Plus the rain had ceased, the sun was out and it was scorchio. Perfect! We had a couple of hours here and sat and had lunch in the National Park.
The next thing on the itinerary was a rain forest walk which no one was really interested in so we decided to break with the norm and visit Kingfisher Bay. You got to it from another inland road from where we were so we didnt have to go back on the beach as the tide was in. It took about an hour to get there (yes the island is huge, but also has the bumpiest sand roads in the world so you can rarely get above 30kph) and was worth it. It is probably the closest looking beach to something you would find in Thailand that we have come across in Oz. The beaches here just arent the same as Thailand. There was a resort in the Bay too so the beach was clean and it had a little bar on the boardwalk out to sea. You cant swim in the sea on Fraser Island as its far too deadly, which is why the lakes are so popular, but this bay was calm enough that you could just about get in up to your knees (it didnt go much deeper).
This took us into mid afternoon when we had to head back to our campsite for the night. We got there about 5ish and found a good stop to set up our tents. By the time we had done this however it had gotten dark and we still needed to eat dinner. We had a bbq planned for this night so we went hunting in the dark for a bbq (they have them scattered around the camp ground) and cooked dinner. No one could really see what they were eating but it was fun. Then it was back to the camp to drink and play random card games.