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Beach Cruising, Surfers Paradise - QLD

rain 18 °C

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Surfers Paradise is fronted to the east by the Surfers Paradise Foreshore, a rejuvenated public space that fronts Surfers Paradise Beach and the Pacific Ocean. The Foreshore was completed in 2011 and features contemporary coastal streetscaping that incorporates existing trees and vegetation, including about 95 pandanus trees.
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I wanted to explore the whole foreshore from The Spit to Burligh Head - 19km, but with only a day, the best way to cover the distance was to hire a bike, and what better bike than a 'beach cruiser'! and... they came in green :)
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From my accommodation at Surfers Paradise I cycled up to The Spit, a recent land formation.
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At the beginning of the 20the century The Spit did not exist. The Nerang River mouth, known as the Southport Bar, was located near Southport Surf Club and Stradbroke Island extended down to where Sea World is today.
In 1896, the tidal flows in Moreton Bay and the Broadwater were dramtically changed when the sea broke through Stradbroke Island. As a result, a sand spit began to develop from Main Beach, rapidly pushing the Southpiort Bar northward and eroding the southern tip of South Stradbroke Island. The Southport Bar migrated north by four km until it was stabalised by the construction of the Gold Coast Seaway in 1986.
the landscape of The spit has always been a focus of activitiy from mineral sand mining in the 1940s to commercial development for the boating industry, tourist resorts and theme parks from the 1950s to the 1980s.
Just before the end of The Spit is the Sand Bypass Jetty.
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Gold Coast Seaway enjoys the world's first permanent sand bypassing system, which currently delivers all sand that arrives at the Gold Coast Seaway across the entrance and into the World Heritage listed Moreton Bay Marine Park. The Gold Coast Shoreline Management Plan is reviewing this practice[1] and examining the concept of Island Welding to determine if 85% of the sand (80,000 cubic metres per year) can be sustainably recycled to Surfers Paradise. This system works by pumping the sand through the jetty and delivers it away to clear the channel.
The view back to the city showed how the sky scrapers stand out on the coastline
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Whilst standing admiring the view, I met a lovely couple of ladies, out for a walk - Ann & Catherine.
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Ann is currently filming as an extra in Pirates of the Caribbean! (shhh!) so look out for her!

Treacherous waters
Prior to the construction of the Gold Coast Seaway, the constantly shifting sandbanks of the Southpiort Bar created hazardous navigational conditions leading to numerous boating accidents.
In February 1887 the Scottish Prince, an iron barque carrying cargo up the coast, ran aground and broke up off the southern tip of Stradbroke Island. Today the wreck is a popular dive site lying about 400m off the beach of The Spit.

Thankfully, this yacht sailed out past the breakwall with no problem
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Doug Jennings Harbour
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Federation Walk
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A project to conserve and enhance the reserve as a natural public open space for the benefit of the community.
Federation Walk Coastal Reserve encompasses 70 hectares of vegetated dunes on The spit, stretching along 2.7km of ocean beach from the Gold Coast Seaway to Philip Park. The reserve features a network of established tracks encouraging locals and visitors to experience the natural setting.

Unfortunately, at this point, the heavens opened! I was at the furthest point form 'home' with no shelter!
So, heading back south towards Surfers Paradise, I stopped for a change of clothes before I carried on!
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On the way I past Nobby Beach
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and stopped to walk up Mick Schamburg Park, for a great view back the way I'd just come
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on passed Mermaid Beach
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and Miami Beach
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witnessed a wedding, and the photograpghs on the beach
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tested the 'beach' part of my 'beach cruiser'
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and carried on towards Burleigh Head
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Burleigh Head
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Rising 79m above the popular Burleigh beach is the distinctive rocky headland, original named 'Burly Head'. The park can be explored by two walking tracks, which wind their way through the headland.
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The thick basalt lava cooled slowly, causing it to shrink and crack into massive six-sided columns. Over millions of years, wind and rain have worn away surrounding rock to leave only the more resistant basalt columns. Some of the huge columns can be seen on top of the headland, while many have tumbled down to the ocean's edge. The fallen basalt columns form a barrier at the cliff base, protecting the headland from further erosion. Heavy rain can cause occasional rock falls on these steep, coastal slopes. This tree had obviously had some battles in it's time
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I stopped for a little while to watch a pair of Kookaburras, flying up to an ants nest in the tree tops, and picking them off, one by one
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A little different to watching the Seagulls hunting for food at the beach!
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Tallebudgera Creek
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The rocks and sandy shores here were food-gathering places for the Kombumerri people. Here women and children gathered seafood, prawns, oysters, crabs and other shellfish while men cast their nets wide to catch fish herded into their nets.
The view from Burleigh Head showed the rain clouds passing over
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but it didn't deter the surfers
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Heading back the sun was begining to set
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so I climbed up Mick Schamburg Park again to watch the last of the light disappear
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Posted by charlystyles 13:27 Archived in Australia Tagged beach_cruising

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