Metric madness

We have been visiting Memory Cove in the Pt Lincoln National Park again. This is certainly one of my favourite places to spend a few days, either kayaking along the coast or if it’s too rough, spending time exploring the area by Mountain Bike. The park consists mainly of Sheoak and Eucalyptus woodland with a number of species being represented. The sandy beaches are unspoilt and the sheer cliffs and granite outcrops along the coast make for stunning paddling and the opportunity to see Southern Right Whales in winter.

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This is a place that has remained much the same since the days of Whaling in the early 1800’s, when whalers who were based at nearby Spalding Cove and Thistle Island pulled into this cove. They established a “mailbox” among the rocks on the southern end of the cove, where letters and messages were left for other passing vessels to collect and deliver to the township of Port Lincoln.

The letterbox is marked by an inscription in the rock, 4 ft and a direction arrow, meaning look 4 foot above this mark.


Now Australian currency was metricated in 1966 from pounds and pence to dollars and cents and distances gradually changed from feet and inches to metres and centimetres but I’m sure Whalers were still in the old ways.

However if you read the Department of Environment brochure  on Memory Cove the letterbox has moved somewhat to 1.2m Λ, changing to metric measures. Maybe the job of “proof reader” has been abolished with the job of “Whaler” but I certainly think it’s just a case of Metric Madness. 🙂

Ian Pope
Still Paddling South….




Sea caves and scorpions

We had decided to explore Memory Cove, in the Pt. Lincoln National Park for a few days.  The park, which is one of my favourite parts of South Australia, starts a few kilometres from Pt. Lincoln, is over 70 sq. km in size and includes a number of islands that I have visited by kayak in the past.

The park boasts some spectacular coastal scenery, and features the vast Sleaford-Wanna sand dune system, as well as the offshore islands.  Access to the cove is via a 15km 4WD track and only 5 vehicles are allowed camping access at any one time.

Matt decided to drive the track fearing that I might get us bogged again in sand dunes, however the drive is more rocky than sandy.

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We set up camp just metres from the beach and launched the kayaks.

Cove view

After being greeted by the local sea lions we explored the coastline.IMG_0013


and found some sea caves to poke around in.


Everywhere is luscious underwater growth with large abalone growing on the rock walls.


The warm evening was enjoyed along with a few cold beers.


The next day an approaching storm kept our exploration landlocked.

storm coming

We travelled a sandy 4WD track that hadn’t been used for some time…….


and we found out why.


Matt and Kathrin did some rock climbing and explored a deserted beach. If you look closely you will see them on the beach.


Back at camp that night, while enjoying dinner and a red wine, Matt found a couple of unwelcome visitors heading for his tent. He quickly despatched the Scorpions back to the bush on the end of a shovel.


Thistle Island kayak expedition

Just got back from a week paddling around Thistle Island, near Pt Lincoln in Spencers Gulf. It seems that everytime I go over there I come up against headwinds, maybe it’s something I said to offend the weather gods.
Still we had a great paddle along the coast for 2 days and then out to the islands, camping on Thistle Island for a couple of days. A great trip with Mal H, Mal B, Miss Kathy, and Donna the photographer.
I came back with some great video, especially of a feeding frenzy of dolphins and birds. They had a school of fish on the surface and were really getting into them. Ofcourse I’m not sure what drove the fish to the surface but I can guess. Ofcourse Donna had 750 photos !!!! which means my video stuff will be saved by her stills.