Wild dogs, dingoes, a goanna, whales, a pod of dolphins and plenty of mosquitoes are waiting for you at NSW’s very own wild fronteir, just over 2 hours north of Sydney, at Mungo Brush.
Late one Friday evening in October, we left Sydney with Hawks Nest in our sights. The plan was to park the ute at Dark Point, and leave it there for a whole 3 days (gotta love those long weekends). If you’re not familiar with our usual camp spots, this one is at the top of the list.
Overnight we were the only ones on the beach, with just a few fishermen arriving as we were packing up after breakfast. Last year this spot was packed on the October long weekend, so we knew we were in for Bondi-esque crowds if we were to stay put.
When we woke on Saturday morning, winds were blowing sand in our food, eyes and ear holes. So we chose to shelter ourselves from the 40km/ph gusts, pack up the swag, and drive a little further north to Big Gibber Headland. As we drove down the beach back to Lemon Tree 4×4 exit, a few fourbies bumped past us, heading up to the north end to soak up the rays. The crowds were coming in hot, and it wasn’t even 9am.
When we got back onto Mungo Brush road, Mark remembered doing the drive a few years back, “Dad used to give Dave and I the keys to his car, and we’d take it up this road towards Mungo Brush. But I don’t recall ever taking it on the beach this far north.”
A sign reading “Sandy Point picnic area” distracted us, so we pulled into the soft four wheel drive track, and parked the car.
A sandy hill blocked the view of the water that lay ahead, and the breeze pushed my hair across my eyes. As we got to the top of the hill, clear aqua blue waters lay ahead, with a spectacular view of Broughton Island right in front of us. Giant shells were scattered across the sand, and a sandy ridge jutted out before the shoreline. I ran towards the water with arms wide open.
And of course a wave came and splashed me with it’s salty seas, quicker than you can yell “aw shit, my only clean undies.”
It was a view I’d expect to see if I were in the Whitsundays, not 3 hours(ish) north of Sydney.
Wiping the sand off our feet, we climbed back into the ute and continued down Mungo Brush Road towards the entry to Mungo Brush beach.
We entered the beach via Hole in the Wall Trail. This time, the sand was softer than before, and the trees hanging over the trail reminded me of the flora we’d see on Fraser Island.
We drove up to Big Gibber Headland, where 3 fishermen were parked up with their rods out. We scrambled up the rocks and watched as a pod of dolphins jumped through the waves 50 metres ahead of us.
As we shuffled back across the sand towards the car, we spotted a wild dog (looked more like a hyena, lets be real) watching us, perched on a rock near the ute.
Old mate walked right in front of us down to shore line. With patchy fur, and mumma-dog-nips, we knew she was hiding some pups somewhere near the headland.
As the afternoon went on, our tummies were grumbling, so we popped a pot over the single burner, boiled some water and cooked up 3 packets of mi-goreng (thanks Aldi). Sitting on our double chair, eating our noodles, we kept our eyes on the horizon to spot the whales leaping out of the ocean, patiently waiting for night to fall, and our dear friends Matt and Bec to arrive.