Just because I couldn’t get enough of SAND at Fraser Island…

I had signed up for something called 4WD Sand Duning or something – I rarely actually look at what I’m putting my name down for these days.  Turns out they take you to an area around Port Stephens that’s slowly being taken over by… you guessed it, SAND!

The SAND here has created some of, if not the largest sand dunes in the world, and the locals celebrate this by strapping plastic shingles to their asses and throwing themselves down the steepest ones.  And then they make us do it too.

Again, there are no roads because there’s SAND everywhere.  So the truck gets stuck often and usually is travelling at some angle other than neutral.  We saw plenty of SAND dunes and we climbed up and down them for a pretty fun but shaky ride to the first real large one – its quite impressive how high they can actually get.  On the far side of the dune (towards land) the SAND drops off quite rapidly.  We could get up right to the edge and its actually quite safe because the SAND is like a giant handbrake for you if you fall, since you sink into it.  So people started jumping off the edge… not saying whether I did or not because my mom reads this too.  Hi mom!

We also got to strap on the previously mentioned “sleds” and torpedo down a particularly steep one.  Not to be outdone by regular winter snow sledding, the guides also have a waxing stick that they grease your sled up with before you head down.  Its fast, but not as fast as snow!  But its a lot warmer and you don’t get soaked if you fall off – you only get sand in places that you never thought sand would ever, ever go.  Like in your ears.  I swear, a shower and 6 hours later I was still finding sand in my ear canal.  Not to mention the copious amounts that I ignorantly carried back into my hotel room in my pockets.  The bathroom floor looked like a sandbox.

On the actual beachfront we hunted for some small clams called Pippis by doing a very complicated maneuver christened “The Pippi Dance” which involves twisting your feet back and forth in the wet sand until you hit something with your foot.  I found a big’un!  These guys are a delicacy and these days also carry a $22,000 (not a typo) fine if you are caught taking one away from the beach.  So we just found some and tried to see if we could get them to dig themselves into the sand while we watched.  And we got one too! Its actually kind of neat, they stick this foot out and pull themselves down into the sand very easily.  Cool beans.

That was as far as the fun went on the travel-to-sydney day… next: Syndey!