2 hours away, 2 days of adventure…
What can I do within two hours drive of Brisbane’s city centre? How can I find some other adventures?
Time to take a drive north in the Colonel to the aptly named Sunshine Coast and see just how much I can cram into a weekend away!!
I’d been speaking to the fantastic team of Beverley and David who run Fairseas Apartments in Caloundra last week and suggested the idea to them. “There’s loads to do here, come up and stay!’ Their perfectly positioned holiday units overlook the picturesque Pumicestone Passage at Golden Beach.
I head north, pull into their car park and eventually rest my head on the pillow in the apartment knowing full well my sleep will be short….
Saturday morning 3:45am…alarm clock goes off!!! Argghhh am I really going to do this?
Coolum Surf School is run by Master-of-the-Ocean Chris who doesn’t like lazing in bed. We’d arranged a 5am meet and I was 40kms away. Still nothing like a good surf to wake your head up.
As we stepped out into the foamies, chunky learners board under my arm, the sun broke the distant horizon way out over the ocean. It’s a very special time of day, just a few other surfers, joggers and dog walkers about.
I’ve never had the best balance in the world but an hour later I was riding my plank to the beach. Chris headed out at 7am to take 20 kids for a lesson….I headed to the nearest cafe for breakfast.
The Sunshine Coast is held in place by the Glass House Mountains, a line of 11 craggy volcanic peaks towering above pine plantations, eucalypt forests and open fields. I love mountains and more than anything scaling them! Named by James Cook during his epic voyage along Australia’s east coast, the Glass Houses are rhyolite plugs formed by volcanic activity millions of years ago – fascinating!
With unspent energy left from the early start I donned my running kit and headed to the 253m peak of Mt Ngungun, within 30 minutes I was at the top. Pretty impressive view huh?
There are so many tracks, climbs and walks here in the Glass House Mountains National Park. I could have honestly spent two days here alone.
Next morning another early start, this time to try my hand at kite surfing. I’ve done a fair bit of power kiting in the UK before but that was five years ago and with 25 knots (50kmh) of wind blowing it wasn’t going to be easy.
Mike from Kite Thrills has bucket-loads of experience and quite literally showed me the ropes (or lines as they’re called). With the wind pumping down the Pumicestone Passage just getting to grips with the power of the 9 metre kite was tough enough. Add to that trying to stand up on the board and NOT be dragged to Hawaii was another thing altogether!
I have to admit there was one serious wipe-out…I was hoisted 5 metres in the air at the same time as being dragged horizontally at 40 km/h and then unceremoniously dumped into the ocean. Talk about winded…talk about damaging the crown jewels. Five minutes later I was good to go again. Finally I managed to get everything sorted…I was kite surfing!
The rush of flying across ocean with a huge kite powering you along is hard to beat. If you want to get the blood pumping then this is most definitely the way to do it. Check out Kite Thrills website here.
I returned to Brisbane 48 hours later having had the best time. I may live in the city but with this doorstep so close and so full of fun there can be no excuses – Queensland is the Adventure Capital of Australia!!