We set out on this trip looking forward to catching up with friends we hadn’t seen in a while (last Easter in fact). We left on Thursday, giving us a 5 day weekend rather just a 4 day one. We headed down the familiar road through Nerriga as it puts us right near Jervis Bay and lets us avoid the Easter traffic over Clyde mountain. A quick pie for breakfast in Bungendore, then a nice easy trip east towards the coast. As usual, there was a sneaky beer at the Nerriga Pub, and we also stopped on the way at Tainjara Falls and sent the drone out over the waterfall. (sorry for the embarrassingly grainy photographs, I’ve still got the training drone with the poor camera for now).
We found our caravan park (Huskisson Beach Tourist Resort) without any problems, and found our powered campsite was situated right next to the tennis courts and playground area. The entire park was filled with wild children roaming around on bikes, scooters and skateboards. It took us about 15 minutes to fully set up, and then we did what anyone would do in our situation – we went to the pub.
The Huskisson Pub is a great venue with outstanding views and some decent food. It does get very busy though, no matter the time of day or day of the week. After some hard work watching dolphins play in the water and after 4 or 5 drinks, we went back home to sit on the beach with a bottle of wine. This was all pre-meditated – we knew that soon we’d have friends setting up next to us with children of their own.
Our mates eventually arrived at about 9.30pm, after around 5.5hrs on the road. That’s a 200km trip from Sydney that Google says should take 3hrs – or another way, that’s an average speed of 36km/h, slightly less than the speed you’re legally allowed to do in a school zone. Fortunately, our friends are looking to buy a house here in Canberra which will improve their quality of life (when driving) enormously.
Total time to set up their camper trailer was about 2.5 hours, though with prepared screenshots of the instructions and some previous goes at setting up, our friends were all over it with the foldout system. Very fiddly; poles all need to be set up separately; they all have different lengths. The sunshade requires dome tent style poles and someone over 6” to get them in, but once it’s up you have a huge amount of room for the kids and it’s very comfortable. A tradeoff to our 15 minute set up. We eventually got it all set up and managed to down a few beers during the process, with the kids (and Rosie) able to get to sleep around 11.30pm.
On Good Friday, we set out to make it a Great Friday. Breakfast was beers and mimosas (from 10am onwards, we’re not monsters). Straight to the pub for more drinks and lunch.
Some of us needed afternoon naps after that, so Rosie took a 4 year old out to the beach while the rest of the adults snoozed. She was very good at keeping him alive even in the freezing water of the South Coast. She realised that kids don’t have internal thermostats like adults, so she made him leave the water after his teeth started chattering.
Dinner on our Great Friday was pizza done in the weber. We even had a minor Easter miracle as the almost empty LPG bottle just didn’t run out after 6 or so pizzas. We made friends with an English couple that set up camp next to our group (welcome to the tennis courts guys) and had a great night comparing wines and telling tall tales. Please note that the box of wine (goon) we’d brought was considered more palatable that either of the other bottles of red we opened that night, proving that our experiences at festivals with no glass rules had come in handy after all.
No one threw up that night, so definitely an improvement over the 2017 Good Friday.
Saturday everyone was a little bit sore in the head, but we sucked it up and walked into town for the Easter parade. This parade was all of 2 blocks long, yet they somehow managed to fit in 4 separate bagpiping marching bands in. This did not help any hangovers. Fuck bagpipes.
Met up with some good friends and their kids that live in the Jervis Bay area at the Easter carnival, and then went to the beach with them immediately after. We managed some light vodka drinks on the beach as a bit of hair of the dog, and both of us ended up swimming in the freezing cold water.
As we were packing up, I noticed my wedding ring wasn’t where I left it on my stuff. We searched for about an hour, but were not able to find it anywhere in the immediate vicinity. We resigned ourselves to it being lost for good, and packed up and left the area. 20 minutes later, we got a call from our friends that lived in the area saying they had picked up a metal detector from some friends and were heading back to the beach. We met them there, swept the area for 4 minutes, and found the ring. It was a fair distance to where I’d left it, so there’s a good chance it was flicked there when someone moved the towel. But all good, wedding ring safe and marriage saved.
Champagne and beer was had to celebrate. Sunday was another slow start. We packed up (30 minutes, slow going) and said goodbye to our mates, leaving them alone with 3+ hours of packing up their trailer. A lovely breakfast in Huski, then just down the road to see our local mates and say thank you one more time for saving the ring the day before. Back on the road, we didn’t really have an intended destination – maybe camp another night inland a bit or pull over in a national park, but as we got on the road we were discovered the allure of a quiet night at home with a proper shower and no screaming kids sounded pretty good. a good end to a long weekend.
All up, a very good trip. The caravan park (Huskisson Beach Tourist Resort) wasn’t the best and we wouldn’t recommend it unless it’s your only option (2 stars out of 5). The other caravan park next door looked a lot nicer. The bathroom in our park was outdated and had awful showers. Plenty of hot water, but I had to kneel to get my hair wet and there was no real shower head. Doors in bathroom were in need of repair as well. Security was on site to make sure adults aren’t talking too loudly after 10.30, but they did nothing about the kids roaming around the park late at night, or the ones that woke up screeching before 6am. Caravans all seemed to have their grey water draining directly onto the hard packed earth – kinda gross in places. A lot of sites like ours were just dirt, no grass. Front desk staff was nice and helpful though and cannot fault the beach directly opposite the park, but the main road directly behind the park was very noisy.