After spending a few hours at Fruit Bat Falls, Eliot Falls and Twin Falls we raced up to complete the rest of the old telegraph track and catch the Jardine River ferry to get to the north side of the Jardine River. This is where the old telegraph track ends and you head into the true northern tip area where the Torres Straight Islander communities are located. We drove through the main community of Bamaga and headed towards Umagico to camp for the night. Our first impressions of the islander communities were really good – they’re clean, tidy and the locals are super friendly. Alau beach camping area in Umagico was brilliant – cheap, clean, quiet, friendly owner, friendly neighbors camping along side us, beautiful beach, views of some Torres Straight Islands and the weather turned good too after weeks of overcast conditions and strong winds. Mainly we relaxed, caught up on some long awaited showers and clothes washing, Joe did some fishing and Sharni made friends with some of the camp dogs that were running around the joint. The dogs ended up following us around everywhere for the whole time we camped at Umagico.
Joe found some Lady Apple trees next to our camp. Lady Apple is a native Australian bush apple that Joe recognized from his studies of the Bush Tucker Man tv series. There were some ripe fruit so Joe thought he’d give them a go. They tasted mainly of sourness, but concentrate hard and you can sense some apple flavour within the acidic tang. Something like granny smith apples but different texture – a bit spongy and fibrous.
There’s a good atmosphere at the Umagico camp grounds and we really enjoyed our couple of nights stay. Could have stayed there for a week had we had the time.