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Destination: Cape York

The recent Outback Trip 2000, led by Mr Jeff Watson and Mr Stefan Janse van Vuuren, left Melbourne Airport at 6.00 am. Scotch alone, led by those who will remain nameless, emptied the Qantas flight's peanut supply.

Cape York group About 3 hours and many peanuts later, and still half-asleep, we found ourselves in FNQ (Far North Queensland). Soon, we were unpacking our things at the Oasis Resort, and strolling about warm and sunny Cairns, seeing the sights.

The next morning at a time too early to be revealed, a wake-up call interrupted our sleep (which was badly needed). The next 6 days aboard 4 wheel drive vehicles, with guides Tom, Geoff and Evan (from 'Wilderness Challenge'), would prove both exciting and informative.

The struggle northwards commenced through the Daintree and Cape Tribulation rainforests, along the Bloomfield Track, past Cooktown stopping to view Aboriginal rock art at Split Rock, eventually weaving our way through the top end to Weipa. At Weipa, we toured around the largest Bauxite deposit in the world, before continuing up the Old Telegraph Track to Cape York. At Somerset beach, we found the graves of Frank Jardine and his Samoan Princess wife, overgrown with metre high weeds. Ten minutes of Scotch 'man power' soon rectified the situation and had the famous Australian's grave looking more respectable.

River Crossing After farewelling our guides at Bamaga's 'Jacky Jacky' Airport (an old WWII airfield), we boarded a twin-engined plane bound for Cairns.

We soon discovered that the plane had exceptionally low peanut reserve, which was all too quickly consumed. Further exciting activities were experienced on the Great Barrier Reef, (snorkeling at Michaelmas Cay) Kuranda Markets via the train and Skyrail (aerial gondolas) and finally some serious and continuous white water rafting down the Tully River.

This won the award for the most exciting activity, on a fabulous trip to FNQ.

Sensing the end of a great journey, we headed back to Cairns for some last minute shopping, before catching the plane home. Many thanks must be extended to 'Mr Watto' and 'Mr DJV' for all of the essential behind the scenes organisation and planning.

Dean Cugley and Peter Sparkes

Updated: Monday 24 June 2013