Beach or bush?

I do love my new area, but I have one gripe: too many of the councils allow 4WDS on their beaches.

My heart sinks when I walk out onto such an uninhabited beach as this early of a morning and find it unnaturally defaced, scored with tyre tracks running the length of it …just for fun, just because they can.

The footprints of people, dogs, birds and crabs do not distress me; they belong or have earned the right to be there by being amongst Nature to get there.

I face south and it is the same. Indeed, worse, as I can see vehicles parked there. But perhaps they are there to fish… does that make it OK?  No, past generations of fishermen would have walked, or known where the bush access tracks where to the best spots along that beach. 

I’d better look down, between the tyre tracks, at what the tide has left; I am somewhat heartened that there does not seem to be plastic pieces amongst the shell fragments. Or are they so tiny as to be invisible to the naked eye? Pessimism, or realism?

I think I’d better take to the beachside bush instead…

There are three access or picnic spot tracks to this long Dunbogan Beach, each named after a tree, although at these mainly unburnt spots those trees are not obvious to me nor marked: Blackbutt, Cheesetree and Geebung. The signs at these spots tell only of the battle against the invading Bitou Bush all along the coast.

The drive to Blackbutt does wind through what I think is a Blackbutt and Banksia forest.

I am told at the Diamond Head camp National Park office that there are no brochures or leaflets anymore, on flora or fauna. Budget? What about the purpose of national parks to educate?

I suspect I am more in tune with bush than beach, and marvel at the lichen patterns on this tree trunk.

Then I turn and see this fine goanna sunbaking in the open. It hears my camera click on, and turns its head. ‘Hello, you’, I say, as is my wont with all the wild creatures I meet.

Once again, the intricate patterns that Nature has invented make all our human design attempts pale in contrast…

4 thoughts on “Beach or bush?”

  1. Oh Cathy, I am so sorry that this is happening to your forest, well named now. Yes I knew those issues when I lived on my Mt. Dirt roads just seem to incite some people to destruction, and their vehicles give them the means. Barriers would be removed or driven around, and it’s not easy to close public or crown roads to other than residents. You could try getting up an action group to lobby State Forests, as repairing the hoon damage would be costing them. Must be so frustrating for you as you hear and see them! I hope you can focus on the delights that Nature gives you there.

  2. Love the goanna Sharyn! It’s the same here where I live, on the edge of the Mt Disappointment State Forest, north of Melbourne. Suburbia is creeping ever- closer, and the hoons all come any day of the week and absolutely trash our beautiful forest with their trailbikes, 4 wd’s and rubbish!! The verges along the bush roads are churned to mud, as they do their their ‘donuts’ and get their small minded ‘jollies’. I see them going past my gate as they return home, their vehicles completely covered in mud. I saw one once with the words ” Raping the Bush ” emblazoned across its windscreen…Sadly, it’s the mentality of many of the people we are dealing with these days.

  3. Thanks for your appreciation Ariel. Hope the Foster area keeps firm against the ‘rights’ of 4WDs over Nature.

  4. yeah it’s a struggle to kind of take in all the beauty and ignore the bloomin 4WDs and other vandalistic horrors.. why do they have to be there?? So far there aren’t many at our Elizabeth beach just south of where you are or at Boomerang or Blueys..but at Cellito..I haven’t been there for ages cos the track in is so bumpy and ..anyways thanks for your finely designed goanna and sensitive observations xo

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