How many towns in Australia say they are the closest town to the Great Barrier Reef? Off the top of my head I can list 1770, Mission Beach, Port Douglas, Cape Tribulation and Cooktown to name just a few. How many of these towns though, boast the fact that you can walk to the reef?
Well here at Kurrimine Beach last month we did just that. A group of six guests accompanied me out to King Reef. This was a whole new experience for me. To visit the reef usually involves a boat trip with seventy plus other guests and a cost in excess of $150! Well here at Kurrimine Beach you can walk out and explore the reef for free – that’s absolutely no charge. The only rule that we have here at the Kurrimine Beach Holiday Park is that anyone who picks up a crayfish must share it at happy hour!
To walk out to the reef the tides must be lower than 0.4m. We walked out about an hour prior to low tide, most of the way we were mid calf to mid thigh deep in water. There were a couple of spots where members of our group found some deeper spots which added to our amusement. The walk out to the reef is quite a hard walk as you are pushing though the water but it is well worth it. It took our group just over 30 minutes to reach the reef.
We had just over an hour to explore the reef. At first the reef just looks like exposed seaweed but it is actually a mass of rock pools to be explored. All of the exposed reef is hard coral so is fine to walk on. In the rock pools we found crabs, cowrie shells, clams, giant horned starfish, common starfish, brittle starfish, octopus, numerous fish and different sorts of corals. We also saw turtles and a sea snake on the walk out. Whilst not the prettiest of reefs it is fascinating to explore. Fay, one of the guests that came with us, has been collecting seashells for over 50 years. She found things that she had never seen before! Of course, there is also the chance to pick yourself up a King Reef Painted Cray but don’t forget the park rules!
The other dates for walking to the reef this year are:
June 2012 – 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th
July 2012 – 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 30th and 31st
August 2012 – 1st, 2nd, 29th and 30th
We accompany our guests to the reef and have a safety boat on hand if you find the walk to strenuous. For more information call Tracey or Kay on 07 4065 6166.