Far North Queensland’s Wet Tropics has amazing pockets of biodiversity. The Wet Tropics World Heritage Area stretches from Townsville to Cooktown and covers 894,420 hectares of coastal zones and hinterland, diverse swamp and mangrove-forest habitats, euclaypt woodlands and tropical rainforest. It covers only 0.01% of Australia’s surface area, but has:
- 36% of all mammal species
- 50% of the bird species
- around 60% of the butterfly species
- 65% of the fern species
This amazing bush tucker trip, where the tropics meets the reef, took us from Cairns to Port Douglas, up to Cape Tribulation and down and around the tablelands. It was effortless touring in our modern and fuel efficient camper, which Sam has duly named Larry – Lili’s boyfriend!
We did plan on heading right up to Cooktown, but having already crossed several overflowing creeks, we came to a halt at Emmagen Creek and turned back. It was impassable without a 4×4 and we didn’t want to forfeit our $2,000 damage deposit.
We spent most of our time wild camping (no campsite) and without the need for a electric hookup. We had been told by many that this wasn’t possible; either the locals or police would move us on. Quite the opposite, we met and shared a few glasses of wine with some fantastic locals who were more than helpful in finding us a nice sheltered area where we could park up for free.
We seen some weird and wonderful animals, insects and plant life along the way – too many to mention. If we said we were not nervous of the prospect of meeting a croc we’d be lying. Almost everywhere warned of the dangers of this fierce predator and you could tell the environment, especially the swamps, was prime breeding ground. We did swim in a river where two locals assured us the water was too cold for crocs – we have learned since that that was a load of balony – lucky escape I say.
This creek we did cross.
This creek we didn’t!