May 23, 2016
Today we had another long drive ahead of us. We didn’t end up waking up at 5am to drive back to Cape Hillsborough to watch the sunrise and see kangaroos on the beach. As we were snoozing our alarms, we said we’d come back and do this drive over a week or more in the future. We could camp there and walk to the beach instead of driving 45 minutes from Mackay to Cape Hillsborough. The bed at Ibis was extremely comfortable (probably one of the best beds we’ve slept on so far) so it made it even harder to get up.
We went to McDonald’s (again) for breakfast. I ordered a spinach, egg and feta wrap trying to be healthy. Tim, however, found the most unhealthy choice. He ordered the “Aussie BBQ Brekkie Roll”, which had double sausage patties, eggs, bacon, and BBQ sauces on a sesame bun, two hash browns, and a flat white coffee! Our breakfast was basically our only meal for the day so it was good Tim had a huge breakfast.
Our drive today was from Mackay to Noosa, which is about 850km away. Tim had another ~9 hour drive to do today. I don’t know how he drives so long and is still okay. Tim’s done a lot of road trips on his own while working in Columbus, so long drives like this are nothing to him. I’m just used to driving max 6 hours a day (to get to Portland). The weather was better than our first day on the road but the scenery was pretty boring and repetitive. In my mind, I had pictured the drive from Cairns down to Brisbane to be scenic and beautiful. Since we were driving a more direct route we weren’t seeing anything interesting.
Halfway through our drive we got pulled over for a speeding ticket, which is really unlucky. I was thinking we hadn’t seen a police car at all on both our road trips in Queensland and while we were in Victoria. Tim thought we were still in a 110 zone but it became a 100 zone and he was going 119. We got pulled over and they gave us a ticket for $235 AUD. From that point on we were pretty paranoid with the speed limit changes. On the bright side, the police officers were really nice and friendly.
That put a bit of a damper on our day since $235 AUD is more than our car rental for 3 days. We were still really full from lunch and there wasn’t much food selection in the small towns we passed by. After two meals in a row at McDonald’s, nothing I saw at gas stations or any fast food was appetizing.
The sun set really early in Queensland. Around 5:30pm it was already pitch black out. This made me feel a bit uneasy while we were driving because the highway was only one lane each way with no median, the roads were winding, there were no street lights, and there were so many semi trucks going the opposite direction. As much as I trust Tim’s driving skills, I don’t really trust others. Considering there were so many warning signs about driver fatigue and a lot of road side memorials, it made me a bit paranoid.
When we arrived in Noosa at 9:30pm, I went from being thankful we made it there safely to feeling physically exhausted (and I wasn’t even the one who was driving). The long hauls of our road trip are finally over. I’m looking forward to seeing Noosa during the day and finally seeing the Sunshine Coast.
The motel we booked for the night was called Noosa Sun Motel. It was the nicest motel we’d stayed in so far. The room was huge and was more like an apartment than a motel room. It had a kitchen, dining table, sofa, an extra bed, and our bed was in a separate room. The room was $125 AUD/night.
Steps today: 1,000
Kilometres today: 850km