The weather forecast was gloomy, however, never daunted the intrepid campers began to arrive filled with optimism and Aerogard. ChrisP and Peter were waiting at the gate at 3.30pm for Tony and I and soon afterwards Keith, Sam and Pasc, Trevor, Karen and Martin, Paul and Carol and recent visitors to the Club, Jason and Jane arrived.
The new campsite is a treat with a large open area for the campfire and plenty of room for all of us. Bryan (DEC) and crew had cleared and levelled the space for us and it was easy to get ourselves organised though Sam had to move his vehicle 15 times (well, he thought it was that many!) Another open area is located behind it in the lea of the sand dune could take more campers if needed. Bryan also had a portable toilet brought in much to the relief of the campers. The campfire, also supplied by Bryan, developed into a perfect camp cooking fire on which Peter and ChisP prepared their meals. Not to be outdone, Sam and Pasc had their Simpson fireplace with them so we had two great heat, cooking & smoke sources. Bridget and Bob arrived after dinner along with John Stamps, Jessica and Luke. By this time we had a total of nine kids from 3 –15 years old. Seeing them play together with such enjoyment was a delight to us.
This was one of those balmy spring evenings when the moon is very bright, the stars twinkle and all is at peace in the world. Several people were up “quite late” but the port might have had something to do with that.
Saturday morning brought an overcast sky and pouring rain on the campfire breakfast. Those up this early rushed for shelter. The rain soon disappeared, the fire was stoked again and once more all was right with the world. Lester arrived and ChisP’s wife, Colleen, also joined us for the day. At 9am the DEC staff, Brian and Terry arrived with plans for our work. Our groups tackled 5km of beach rubbish (report attached), work at The Cut that included some brush work and fencing, while Tony and I collected the feral arum lily seed pods and spiked the bulbs within a 400m radius of the camp. Not having other volunteers, we were also responsible to ensure the fire was maintained and the campsite was secure. At The Cut a young voice said “Daddy there is a spider on your back”. What a spider, 6 large ticks on Trevor’s back and looking for lunch were quickly despatched.
The tasks were complete by lunchtime so after this we were given hessian bags to collect seed from the peppermint trees (Agonis flexosa) and other native shrubs. This seed will be taken to the nursery at Narrogin and next year used to revegetate selected areas. By 4pm we were once again ready to toast the day around the campfire.
Karen and Martin soon had a camp roast cooking on the coals much to the envy of Sam who now regretted not bringing his camp oven. It was another fine evening in which tales of the day & other myths were shared. The younger children enjoyed a sack race before dinner while the adults enjoyed Vasile Wines
Sunday and the warm sunshine.
Trevor and some members left for home after breakfast while others decided on a beach run. Their Report follows. Sam and Pasc, Tony and I walked along the walk trail behind the camp to the beach; it takes 15 minutes each way, and returned to prepared BBQ chicken for lunch. We noticed a little track clearing is needed here, more trail markers dug in and the old ones we put in about 5 years ago need painting again and signs put up. Next time perhaps.
What did the kids have to say about the weekend?
In a word, “FUN.”
Would they like to come back next year in May? “Oh, yes..”
What was fun or good about being here? All joined in the describing of “fun”.
“I found a skeleton of an animal on the beach.” “Meeting new friends.” “Some people saw kangaroos but not us.” “Walking up the hill (behind the camp).” “I saw dolphins at the beach, The Cut and the jetty.” (This was different children’s sightings)
In summary it was a great and worthwhile weekend in the bush and we look forward to seeing everyone there again in May and October 2008. Thank you all for coming and contributing to the fun. Tony and I are certainly looking forward to it again and the tick score, one each. It is getting better.
Stella and Tony
Trip Leader: Tony & Stella
When: 19-21 October 2007
Location: Leschenault Peninsula Conservation Park
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