2015-07-24 -12 130
In the mangroves on the western side of Darwin Harbour, near Mandorah.
Lucy and I were struggling to come up with a good plan for the long weekend. As usual, Geohashing to the rescue!
I was just explaining the concept to Lucy when we discovered that that day's location was very gettable, on the other side of Darwin Harbour - across which there is a ferry - and only about 10kms along the beach. We got our shits together, including Lucy's enormous Newfoundland dog Pinto, and headed to the ferry terminal.
We made the ferry with only about 20 seconds to spare, miraculously, and had to pretend to muzzle Pinto in order to be let on board. Once alighted, our main problem emerged: Pinto is not suitable for long, hot walks in the Northern Territory. His masses of thick, dark fur in these sweltering tropics became unbearable to him. This environment is about as far from that of Newfoundland and one can get on this planet.
So, after briefly stopping to administer ice to Pinto and beers/ciders to me and Lucy, we headed to the beach. A few glorious hours of watching the sun set in front of us, and then the settings of Venus and Jupiter, we realised our dog could not continue. He was so exhausted and upset with us he kept running ahead and blocking our paths with his enormous body. We decided to abandon the hash, just 2 kms from our destination, and set up camp and an appropriate sized bonfire in the dunes above the high-tide.
The next day, we were blocked from getting to the hash-point by the tide engulfing a nearby estuary. Our problems reaching the, now out-dated, hash point multiplied when we realised the beach was totally cut-off from inland by impenetrable mangroves. It took two days for us to navigate through this thick mass to somewhere meaningful (we never actually made it to anywhere meaningful) and then back out to Mandorah and the ferry through the bush.
All was good, though, as we found ourselves drinking away the heat at the Mandorah Country Club. Beer has never tasted sweeter.
Here is a very rough idea of the route we took. The actual route followed the beach a lot closer, and had lots of complicated wiggles to it.