Blog

Rocky Road Trip Stops 4 & 5: Gin Gin & Miriam Vale

We pulled off the Bruce Highway at Gin Gin, approximately 51 kilometres (32 mi) west of Bundaberg and halfway between Brisbane and Rockhampton.

Our stop was fairly short and uneventful, except for our chance meeting with some intriguing fellow road-trippers. This was their mode of travel.

20190301_13515020190301_135200

With a a population of approximately 1,190 people, the town name has sometimes been said to derive from a local Aboriginal word indicating “red soil thick scrub”. It is also possible the name comes from the Western Australian locality of Gingin. 

British occupation of the region began in 1848 when Gregory Blaxland Jnr (son of the explorer Gregory Blaxland) together with William Forster brought their flocks of sheep up from their squatting leases on the Clarence River. The area they selected extended all the way to the coast and they called it Tirroan. Strong resistance from the local Aboriginal people was encountered resulting in the death of several shepherds and the killing of Blaxland in August 1850. Two large massacres of Aboriginals were conducted by local squatters and their stockmen as punitive measures to these deaths.

The Gin Gin district is nicknamed Wild Scotsman Country due to the capture of one of Queensland’s few bushrangers, James Alpin McPherson, in the area on 30 March 1866. McPherson, who went by the same nickname, was captured at Monduran Station, 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) north of town.

We left the Bundaberg Region behind and entered the Gladstone Region, and the population plummeted as we entered Miriam Vale, rural town of approximately 512 people.

20190311_174129
Historical Queenslander style house now home to Lifeline charity store

 

20190311_175333
Rainbow captured above Miriam Vale

Miriam Vale is renowned as a traditional cattle growing area, and also supports timber, beef and dairy cattle. Tourism is an emerging industry within the shire and the town is a gateway to the tourist resorts of Agnes Water and Town of 1770. Miram Vale is on the North Coast railway line and is serviced by the Miriam Vale railway station.

In the 1970s signs at the entry to town proudly proclaimed “Welcome to Miriam Vale – Cattle, Tobacco, Timber and Dairy”. The tobacco industry faded in the late 1970s followed by the dairy industry in the 1990s.

A car rally passed through Miriam Vale in 1924; the stretch of road between Miriam Vale and Gin Gin was said to the roughest of the rally.

Across House Creek there is also evidence of an old speed way ground (circa 1970s) and if you look around the district you can find history in old horse race tracks.

Miriam Vale has a nine-hole golf course with small greens and mature gum trees. At times in its history the course was stretched to twelve holes but the members and district could not sustain the extra work needed to keep these holes open.

We’re nearly there! Next stop- YEPPOON!

 

 

Advertisements
Blog

Books By The Beach Concludes At Coolangatta/Greenmount!

HOORAY!!

We made it to Coolangatta, the last stop on my Books By The Beach tour!

Cooly 3

Thank you SO MUCH for coming on this epic journey with me, and I hope that you have enjoyed seeing and learning about all of the beautiful Gold Coast beaches I have visited along the way! I have certainly learned so much on this journey about the place I call home!It was a wonderful experience, but was not without its challenges, the most common ones being contending with the natural elements e.g. wind, and trying to find a quiet spot to film, especially at the most popular tourist spots like Burleigh. Where the wind wasn’t too strong, the sun wasn’t too glary or the shade too dark. But it was all part of the adventure, and I am so grateful to be able to say I have visited so many of the beaches here in the fantastic city where I live!

cooly-4-1.jpg

When I filmed this series in mid-2018 I was living in Broadbeach (as I mention in the Broadbeach video). However some significant life changes and upheavals delayed the publishing of this series, and I have since relocated to beautiful Coolangatta, where I conclude the series.

Coolangatta is situated on the beach between the rock headlands of Point Danger, Greenmount and Kirra. It is the southernmost suburb of the City of the Gold Coast, and is named after the schooner Coolangatta, which was wrecked here in 1846.

Cooly Gold
View of the Gold Coast skyline

From here, you can look back towards the Gold Coast skyline in the distance and the entire coastline. The surf here is spectacular, particularly off the northern corner of Coolangatta Beach, the headland around Greenmount, Snapper Rocks into the southern corner of Rainbow Bay and of course, the world-class surf break of Duranbah.

Coolangatta marks the southern end of the strip of surfing beaches that runs from the Queensland / New South Wales State Border north to Main Beach. The Gold Coast Airport, formerly known as Coolangatta Airport, is located at Coolangatta, with some of the runway going across the border into New South Wales.

Coolangatta and is a ‘Twin Town’ with our immediate neighbour Tweed Heads in New South Wales. I live right on the Queensland side of the state border- if you cross the street outside my place, you’re in New South Wales!

Duranbah and Tweed Heads sit around the corner from Coolangatta, but technically that’s New South Wales. Technicalities aside, visitors flock to the border town of Coolangatta for its change of pace. Due to the summer time difference with Tweed Heads, we get to celebrate New Years twice!

Having lived in the bustling inner-city area of Broadbeach, the laidback lifestyle we enjoy here in ‘Cooly’ is much more my style!

This suburb exudes an old-school beachside charm. Each June, Coolangatta hosts the Cooly Rocks On Festival, a two-week 1950s and 1960s nostalgia festival with free entertainment and attractions, including hot rods, restored cars and revival bands playing music of the era.

 

Greenmount
Looking back at Greenmount from Rainbow Bay
Greenmount 2
View of Rainbow Bay and Snapper Rocks from Greenmount Hill

greenmount-1.jpgA lovely walking trail wraps around Greenmount Hill connecting Greenmount Beach to Rainbow Bay from which you can head up the hill to Point Danger. Both Greenmount Hill and Point Danger are great vantage points for whale watching.

 

Cooly Pt Danger
View of Snapper Rocks from Point Danger

 

D’Bah, as locals call it, is the one place you can be guaranteed of a swell when the rest of the coast is quiet. Meanwhile, the corner of Greenmount offers a protected spot for a swim.

D Bar 3
View of Duranbah Beach, or ‘D-Bar’, from Point Danger
D Bar 4
Duranbah Beach
D Bar 5
Duranbah Beach and Point Danger

Coolangatta hosts many sporting events including The Coolangatta Gold, one of the premier events in the sport of Ironman (surf lifesaving), as well as prolific surfing competitions the Quicksilver Pro and Roxy Pro.

Cooly Gold 2

Coolangatta Gold surf lifesaving event

Every afternoon I walk from Coolangatta Beach up around Greenmount, along Rainbow Bay to Snapper Rocks, where I love to sit and watch the sunset. I’ve also been lucky enough to spot dolphins swimming by on a number of occasions!

 

Rainbow Bay
View of Rainbow Bay from Snapper Rocks
snapper-1.jpg
Afternoon surfers at Snapper Rocks
Snapper 2
Waves crashing at Snapper Rocks

I also love to go walking up Greenmount and Point Danger, and if I’m feeling extra energetic, I’ll walk down the other side of Point Danger to Duranbah Beach.

In this final video, I’m reflecting back over all the beaches that I have visited, and all the books and stories I have shared with you. I hope you have enjoyed reading them.

I am working on setting up my titles through IngramSpark. In the meantime, I do have copies of The Wilted Rose and Paid To Dance: Stripping Past & Present available in paperback. If you live in Australia, I am able to post these to you. Please get in touch with me via the Contact page of this site to organise payment and delivery.

Thank you SO MUCH for coming on this epic journey with me! Keep an eye out here for many more adventures on the Gold Coast!

Blog

Books By The Beach: Asha’s Story Part Two at Kirra Beach

Welcome to Kirra Beach, the second last stop on my Books By The Beach tour! It is hard to believe it is almost over!

The small rocky headland Kirra Point separates Kirra Beach to the north and Coolangatta Beach to the south, and is noted as one of the world’s premier surf breaks. In the past the surf break was known for producing high quality barrels. Today sand pumping across the Tweed River has filled it in and changed its character.

The Quiksilver Pro, an event on the World Surf League, is often contested at Kirra when the surf is not contestable at Coolangatta.

 

There’s variations on what the word Kirra actually means, but some believe Queensland Aborigines named it after a boomerang. Which makes sense as Kirra wraps evocatively around the bend separating Coolangatta and Kirra beaches and in front of Kirra Hill. Surfers flock to Kirra bend for its world-class breaks, and Kirra has also hosted the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro surfing competitions.

One of the Gold Coast’s most laid-back beach destinations, the suburb is home to Kirra Surf, which surfers consider the one-stop shop for surf gear. Like it’s neighbouring Tugun, Kirra is not a place you’ll find glitz and glamour, with plenty of weatherboard beach shacks still standing among the burgeoning apartment scene. The iconic Kirra Beach Hotel has been trading for more than 50 years.

In this post I am sharing with you my book Paid To Dance: Asha’s Story Part Two.

Three years after daringly stepping into the world of stripping, Asha has left The Runway, the club that made her an exotic dancer, to make a fresh start at at rival venue Mademoiselle’s. Here she is faced with a whole new set of challenges, including an interstate adventure to Melbourne’s glamorous strip club scene. Asha’s personal and professional lives collide in unexpected ways, in the lead-up to the grande finale of her stripping adventure.

PLEASE NOTE: At the end of this video there is information about purchasing the Paid To Dance books on Amazon/Kindle. My books are not currently available on Amazon/Kindle. Instead you can download a free PDF of the first chapter of Asha’s Story Part Two HERE: Paid To Dance Asha’s Story Part Two excerpt

Sexy Womanh hold hands and fingers on legs in fishnet stocking posing

I hope you have enjoyed your time with me here at Kirra Beach. Last stop- Coolangatta!