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Finally it was time (and possible) for us to keep going….

With again not having the “best weather” we gave us a couple of days to go from Cairns to Cooktown.

On thursday, 5th of May we left Cairns and arrived in Cooktown on the 9th.

In between we stayed at Low Islets and Hope Islands. In these days we were just happy to be out on the ocean again,  away from marinas and people 🙂

We slowly approached Cooktown and it’s entrance through the Endeavour River. It was very obvious that strong winds were to arrive shortly, in between the sandbanks it was hard to find an anchor spot with would give us enough swinging room. We continued carefully quite deep into the river, knowing to be able to leave only at a high tide again, as we crossed a 0,2m @Low Tide spot. Later the same day the wind started already to pick up and we started swinging, with winds against the (strong) tide.
The next morning we were quite astonished that Never Land had not dragged and we were still at the same spot – good girl !

Fishing gear in the dinghy and let’s go get us some dinner…. we tried it in the river entrance, along the mangroves, somewhere in the middle of nowhere with no success….same thing as usual 🙁
A bloke in a green tender passed by several times, always friendly waving his arms. Can you imagine how surprised we were, when another day later, early morning, this man just stopped at Never Land with the words : “I saw you’ve not been successful yesterday, well ? I got you a bag of fresh caught Barramundi – enjoy!” – And off he went for work!

Cooktown’s european history started with Captain Cook “stranded” here with his ship Endeavour in 1770 and was able to get all necessary repairs done. Here’s the only river he ever named (The Endeavour River). Here was it where first time kangaroos were seen and named by europeans. Roughly hundred years later Cooktown became an important port for the more inland situated Palmer River Goldfields. Between then and now Cooktown grow to a population of 30.000 people and became a bit of a ghost town with ca. 300 inhabitants as the gold ran out mid of the 20th century.
During the goldrush of the 1870s, a Chinese community – about 22.000 chinese (!) – arrived in the goldfields and in the town itself. The Chinese played an important role in the early days of Cooktown. They came originally as prospectors, but many established market gardens, supplying the town and the goldfields with fruit, vegetables and rice, while others opened shops. Maybe their stoic nature, regimented behavior and strong desire to return home wealthy fostered racism. The european housewives were overlooking this for the short time it took to buy fresh grown veggies and other food from them !

pushbikesWe decided to bring our push bikes on land and started to  explore Cooktown. Even if it’s called “Town”, it’s just a small village with one supermarket, 3 bottle shops, a fishing shop, one hardware store which sells everything and a couple of smaller repair shops. “Of course” there is a Bowls Club and an RSL Club.

[x-contract-perceptive align=”center” color=”rgb(29, 167, 247)” size=”2″ speed=”10″ level=”h3″ looks_like=”h5″ ]Impressions from Cooktown[/x-contract-perceptive]

In these days in Cooktown we stopped cooking and went out for dinner every evening. Nearly always during our dinghy ride to the beach and back we got a shower, but as you know : there is no bad weather, only bad clothing 🙂

We really wanted to try every pub or restaurant, but we always ended up in the RSL Club, where Kelly, Nigel and all the wonderful other staff members made us feel like locals : accepted and more than that welcomed us into their “family” from our very first entry !

Do you remember when I told you about “the fish-man”?

We really became friends with John and his wife Tracey and are missing the good times we had with them !


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