After many weeks of dirt roads and 4WD tracks we were finally back on some bitumen as we approached Karumba. It would be bitumen for the remainder of our trip so time to pump the tyres back up to highway pressure after having them nice and soft to cope with the ass pounding corrugations of Cape York. We rolled into Karumba and had a look around before deciding we’d do some fishing from the mangrove lined beach on the Norman River. Joe landed a few of his specialty species – catfish. Kept one for bait and chucked the rest back in. There’s heaps of pelicans around Karumba so we took a photo of one. Also wallabies are everywhere. We checked out one of the caravan parks and it was $35 or something so we decided to camp out in the mangroves. The caravan park prices in Queensland are high and we have become quite the tight asses lately. Mind you our plan backfired a bit when the sun set – the midges were out in plague proportions. More midges than we’d ever seen. Sharni locked herself up in the car whilst Joe hurriedly set up the tent. With legs burning from a thousand midge bites, he alerted Sharni the tent was ready and we both raced into the tent and zipped it up as fast as we could. What a relief it was to be safe in the tent.
Next day we checked out the other side of town where the Sunset Tavern is situated. There’s a few restaurants and cafes along here as well as a couple more caravan parks and it’s all quite nice. We drove up the beach and had a bit of a fish only to land more dam catfish before returning to town and looking for some accommodation. There’s camping at the servo so we asked how much. He said $20. We asked how much including power. He saw we were just in a 4WD and confirmed we just had a fridge or whatever, after which he said $20 including power! What a joyous occasion it was to find someone who recognized we don’t use the same amount of power as people in caravans with flat screen TVs and microwaves and breadmakers and air-conditioners. Usually we get ripped off for power but this chap gave it to us for free. Nice work guy at the Karumba servo!
We set up camp at the camp grounds behind the servo and then headed off into town for a walk around, beer at the Sunset Tavern and then dinner at one of the cafes. The Sunset Tavern is famous because it’s one of the only places with views of the Gulf of Carpenteria (most of this coast is mud flats and dense mangroves so settlements are not within view of the coast) and because it’s one of the few places in Queensland where the sun sets over the ocean. We had dinner at Seabreeze point store, just down the road from the tavern. Sharni got fish and chips and Joe got a steak burger. Both were delicious and reasonable value too. Then we walked back to the servo and retired for the night.