Last weekend (21st Jan), we headed off for a Sunday drive.
Mr Sparky suggested a drive down to Kurrimine Beach, just for the fun of it.
So off we headed, avoiding housework, for a morning drive.
Despite how often I've driven between Cairns and Townsville and around the ridges at this end, I've never stopped off at any of the beaches.
It was nice to do a bit of exploring.
Kurrimine beach will be forever etched in my head at the place where everyone has a tractor to go with their boat.
We had a quick wander out on the sand but the sun was burning and that didn't last long.
It was a gorgeous day for it, so we decided to dip in and out along the coast on our way back north and visit a few more of the beaches.
Next we stopped in at Cowley Beach.
What a pretty beach that is.
Kurimine had nets up for swimming but there was nowhere for swimming here.
It is also a turtle nesting ground. I wonder if you can come watch them hatch, that would be cool and probably something you have to fluke seeing.
Mr Sparky did a bit of beach combing, looking for shell while I tagged along behind taking photos.
We did one more beach stop after that, it being about lunch time, Etty Bay.
Now Etty Bay is one that has been on my list to visit, the list I keep forgetting.
The beach was pretty picturesque with the forest meeting the sea.
I'd love to spend more time exploring around the rocks, when it isn't so hot and the middle of summer.
But as pretty as the beach was, that wasn't the reason I had wanted to visit.
This was the reason I wanted to visit, the resident Cassowaries.
I kind of figured, knowing my luck, we wouldn't see them.
I was so wrong with one turning up for lunch time, to see what it could find.
Now Cassowaries are one of those animals you give a wide berth to. Check out those feet! They are known to go on the attack and do some pretty major damage when the mood strikes them, or when they have chicks (yet another Aussie animal where daddy does the child rearing).
This one however was happy to wander among the cars and people, probably a little too happy to.
After trying to convince some people eating near the beach that they should share their food, they didn't, it wandered off down onto the sand to find some more bird friendly snacks.
Now I have no idea whether this is a male of female. It turns out they look pretty much the same except the female is bigger and possibly brighter coloured.
After reading up a bit I am going to make a guess that is is either a female or a younger Cassowary. Breeding season is May to October and the male sits on the eggs for 2 months and then rears the chicks.
I put up a couple of photos on instagram of the Cassowary hanging out on the beach. Most exciting was that I made a repost 'Explore Tropical North Queensland' and their facebook for 'best of the week' as well. Woohoo! Although nothing tops actually getting to see the Cassowary. A few people on the repost wanted to know if it was for real, especially that it was down on the beach. Definitely 'for real' and definitely made my day.
I did a little Cassowary stalking as it wandered along the beach and out of sight.
Then we went off to find some tucker of our own.
We had fish and chips at the shop right there, opposite the beach. They were pretty good too.
Just as we were finishing up, we spotted that Cassowary heading back along the beach, checking out what it could see through the windows of peoples' cars and undoubtedly being hopeful about offerings of human food.
I think I'll be heading back to Etty Bay again, that is for sure.
It made a good 'birthday' drive for my birthday during that week.
It also made for a great pre Australia Day drive. You can't get much more Australian than an iconic Aussie animal wandering around one of our gorgeous beaches.
The 26th of January, Australia Day, looked a lot less beach weather like and a lot more typical wet season. Funnily enough, the public holiday, was the only day in the week where it was cloudy and rainy. The one day when people want to get out, spend some time around the BBQ and just generally celebrate the awesome things about this country.
We spent ours at home, doing nothing much, enjoying the air con and snoozing. Exciting bunch that we are.