How many people get to live their dreams? I am..........!

This is my story from the time when Capt'n John and I first decided to sail around the big block, to circumnavigate this great land of ours, AUSTRALIA.

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Time with Mates - Iluka on the Clarence River

Time with Mates - Iluka on the Clarence River
21st - 25th April 2014
sunrise after we sail out of Port Stephens
i love the way the sunrise spreads colour across the sea
Perched high on a headland in the beautiful Hat Head National Park on the Mid North Coast of
New South Wales, Smoky Cape Lighthouse and its historic residences is the most elevated
lighthouse on the east coast. 
after a great night's sail it was mid morning when we were approaching
the town of Yamba at the mouth of the Clarence River
crossing the Bar to enter the Clarence River, a calm crossing
MrJ and I take the rest of the day off to let our tired bodies recover
sunset across the Clarence River from our anchorage in Iluka
early morning the fishing boats return to their harbour  and it is a glorious day
for MrJ and I to go exploring
The small town of Iluka is nestled on the northern mouth of the mighty Clarence River. The town has been established since 1885 and still offers a lifestyle and holiday destination that is a throwback to the past. With a permanent population of around 2500, Iluka has so far avoided the over commercialised coastal development that now characterises many seaside destinations. Holiday makers come to Iluka for the peace and quiet, to play in and around the calm waters, to go bush walking, fishing or just do nothing. There are a few shops, a Golf Club, a Bowling Club and a Pub.
even the animals love the water sports
AR at anchor in Iluka Bay
families come down to the jetty to fish

a Lapwing does a bit of beach walking

we enjoy a coffee at the local bakery
and Yes we did get something yummy
looking up the Clarence river from Iluka
you will compete with the pelicans for the fishing
inside the protected harbour of Iluka bay is a great calm water playground

walking along the fore shore we pass many small accommodation houses
with colourful tended gardens
the harbour bay is a haven for water birds
a family of Lapwing
water birds every which way I look
spectacular sunsets
and peaceful nights
second day MrJ and I went back to walk the shore line again
families having fun - and so was I with my editing
fixing boats in exotic places
MrJ and I took a walk around to the small fishing harbour
Commercial fishing has been the lifeblood of Iluka and the local fleet whilst reducing in number, still plies its trade from the Iluka harbour returning with its catch to the local fishing co-operative. Recreational fishing in Iluka is excellent and well renowned, with an abundance of good fishing spots along the river, ocean shore or accessible by boat.

looks like MrJ has found his mermaid
we enjoy a great feed from the fish co-op
fresh shucked oysters and grilled mullet
Mr Ibis was too busy preening to worry about us 
it was so lovely to walk sandy beaches of the bay at low tide

so much bird life!
and greenery ashore

ANZAC Day 25th April 2014
MrJ and I went ashore to attend the dawn service
All cities and towns through out Australia commemorate ANZAC Day and the little village of Iluka was no exception. It is in small communities like Iluka that the true ANZAC spirit is felt. The whole day's proceeding are organized by the locals, for the locals to remember the locals who fought and lost their lives for their country. MrJ and I felt that we were privileged to be able to take part in this day.
a reflection in the shop window of MrJ reflecting on this day
a special memory
a day to remember
a day to meet fellow x-servicemen and women
a day to make new friends
a full-on community occassion
reminded me so much of the ANZAC Day of past in a small village of Geurie
MrJ falls in
marching with new mates
always great to see how the local schools participate in the day
on guard at the Cenotaph 
the diggers stand in silence

they stand with pride
the young cadets fulfill a solemn roll
the laying of the wreaths by the widows left behind
father and son - a helping hand
my mate Bert and his lovely wife Karen
Cheers to all our mates...........!!!
the sun sets on our 2014 ANZAC Day

The next morning we are leaving the Clarence River for the seaway entrance to the Gold Coast and Queensland. Nearly back to where we started two years ago.

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