MacKay – August 2013

Ooops, 31st of the Month & we haven’t done a Blog this month!!  Where, oh, where does the time go?  Well Jude has turned another year older, darn! We decided to go to one of her favourite places for dinner, Bridges Cafe, right on the river.  This is a great place to meet friends for coffee, which has been done on several occasions. They make awesome savoury muffins as well!!

Bridges CafeView from Bridges Cafe

Unfortunately they now close on a Monday & Tuesday night (Jude’s birthday was a Monday night!) so it was off to “Outback Jacks”.  We had been there previously and had a late lunch and the food was great.  Not this time!!  Tui’s steak was like rubber and Jude’s chips tasted as though they had been cooked at 9 in the morning and reheated.  Very disappointed but hey, it was a night out and a break from cooking!

Next day one of Jude’s mates from the caravan park (Sydnie, another Kiwi) picked her up and took her to lunch at the Eimeo Pub.  What a beaut place, great food, good company and awesome views.

SydnieView from Pub 3

After lunch we went for a stroll along the beach, wading in the water, which was beautifully warm and no “stingers” at this time of the year. Pity we didn’t have our “bathers” or in Kiwi language “togs!”

Pub from Eimeo BeachEimeo Beach 3

There is a huge house being built next door and while on night duty, instead of sleeping,  Tui couldn’t help himself and had to venture over to help with the installation of one of the sectional doors.

garage Door TuiStreet View

Front view next doorBack of House next Door

Now a little bit about MacKay’s Bluewater Trail! The Bluewater Trail is a shared pedestrian and cycle pathway around the city, directly linking local recreation facilities. MacKay Botanic Gardens, Sandfly Creek Environmental Walk, Catherine Freeman Walk, Bluewater Lagoon swimming facility, Bluewater Quay & Iluka Park.

Aerial Bluewater TrailBluewater Trail map

The 21-kilometre trek, which takes in much of the region’s natural beauty, aims to build a healthier community through access to environments that encourage physical activities. It is sections of this walk that Jude does her daily walking, now up to 5kms a day sometimes more.  The aim is to eventually walk the entire trail, not in one day I might add!! The Botanical Gardens walk and along Binnington Esplanade to Bluewater Quay have already been completed, with Tiki Tourer being located towards 3/4 of the way down Binnington Esplanade.  To walk from Tiki Tourer through Iluka Park, along the Sandfly Creek Walk to Bluewater Quay and back via the road is 5.5kms according to Jude’s pedometer and takes just over an hour, unless she stops for a coffee at Bridge’s Cafe!

Sandfly Creek ReserveCroc warning

As you stroll through Iluka Park, there is the sign above, warning about crocs.  Well, first few walks were a little daunting, with one eye out for crocs and one for snakes.  Haven’t seen any yet but the snake season we have been told is just around the corner!!!

The esplanadeour beach 2

A Handsome budget was awarded to Fiona Foley, who is amongst Australia’s most experienced art makers, to devise artwork concepts for 6 major major artworks. The monumental mangrove cap (some nine metres tall) that Foley designed sits beside the Pioneer River as you near Sandfly Creek.

Queens ParkMangrove Scuplture

Unfortunately Jude keeps forgetting to take the camera on her walks so you will have to wait until next time for more photos along the walk way. The route via road often takes her through the Queens Park pictured above, once again not our photo and it is looking a little browner at this time of the year.

Hay PointShips waiting for hay Point

From City Beach, which is across the road from where Tiki Tourer is parked you can see Hay Point in the far distance. There are always numerous ships anchored waiting to dock. The Port of Hay Point is one of the largest coal export ports in the world and is about 40kms south of MacKay.  One of the jetties is 4 kilometres long, making it the longest coal loading jetty in the Southern Hemisphere and the second largest in the world. The second jetty is only a small one, it’s 3 kilometres in length.

Jen Lisa MickThe girls

Airlie BeachFun on the walkway

Our mates Mick & Jen have now moved on from MacKay and are staying at Jen’s daughters near Conway Beach, just out of Airlie Beach and have a new grandson.  Lisa and Jude decided to do a road trip and meet them for lunch at Airlie Beach. Awesome day, lots of laughs!

Well this blog has taken far too much time and there is work to be done, so we will have to leave it there.  Remember “Laugh more, live longer!”












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