I tagged along with a bunch of old schoolmates for a weekend at Double Island Point (D.I.) earlier in the year. Most of the boys were first time campers and 4WDers, which made for some interesting observations. In this month’s article I will provide some basic information for first-time campers and 4WDers, and list some of the opportunities available at D.I.
Only a short drive from Brisbane, D.I. and Rainbow Beach are approximately 150km drive north of Brisbane. When leaving from Brisbane head north along the Bruce Highway, till you reach the Noosa turnoff at Cooroy. From Cooroy head east along the Cooroy-Noosa Road to Tewantin. From there follow the signs to the barge.
For first time campers, Double Island is ideal. The township of Rainbow Beach is a 30 minute drive from most camp sites. Rainbow Beach has everything you need in terms of supplies: food, fuel and ice as well as a pub. During the day there are a few ice vans that cruise up and down the beach, so if your ice is looking low it’s no trouble. There are three lots of bins situated in between the camping areas, so rubbish disposal isn’t a problem. Showers and toilets are located at the freshwater camp ground and I would recommend that you wear thongs as they get quite dirty.
Fishing this region is a great way to get acquainted with surf fishing. The numerous gutters that run the entire beach are a great starting point for anglers looking to catch a feed. Fishing from the beach will often yield good results, mostly in the form of whiting, bream, dart and tailor with the occasional jew.
Rainbow Beach is quite protected and fishes well all year round. Rainbow as with the surf-side, will provide all your bread and butter species. Fresh local bait, such as beachworms and pipis, usually yields the best results. Rainbow Beach is accessible from either the township or via the Leisha Track.
During the colder months, D.I. becomes a fishing Mecca for anglers wrapped in waders. As the second half of the year kicks off, so do the tailor. Tailor are often in thick schools, cruising gutters along the beach. Up until September or so, it isn’t uncommon to hear of blokes bagging out on tailor within the hour. Often the best baits are IQF pillies or chrome slugs.
Keep any eye out for other people and little kids on the beach. There has been a series of unfortunate accidents along the D.I. beaches recently so make sure that all rod holders, bait buckets and chairs are out of the way of cars at all times.
Camping along the open beach is one of the most enjoyable experiences you can have camping. D.I. has a number of camping areas that all require a camping permit. These permits can be obtained from the ranger station before you drive on the barge at Tewantin. It is important that you do not camp where the no camping zones are, as this can result in hefty fines and prosecution.
D.I. is a great place to test your vehicle’s capabilities. The island varies in terms of terrain difficulty, from super hard beach sand to talcum powder sand after the turn of the tide. Dropping your car’s tyre pressure to around the 22-24psi mark will give your vehicle additional traction in the soft sand. If it’s your first drive on the beach, go at low tide so you can experience the harder stuff first. Normal QLD road rules apply along the beaches as do speed limits, so stick to what the signs say.
The Freshwater Track which runs from D.I. over to the Rainbow Beach township is around 16-18km. This track is quite tame, but during holiday season or long weekends these tracks tend to get churned up by novice drivers resulting in super soft sand.
Drivers also need to be aware of the Mudlo Rocks. If you take a trip to the pub or servo you will see the hall of fame. These rocks are notorious for swamping and destroying cars. This obstacle can be safely navigated. Don’t drive around or over these rocks without someone who has done it before and is confident enough to negotiate it.
D.I. is a great location for the beginner camper and angler. Only a short drive from Brisbane, D.I. and Rainbow Beach are a top notch location for the family, with all your needs catered for.
Set-up One (Tailor)
Rod: 13’6 Gary Howard GreenBack (1 piece)
Reel: Alvey 6500BCVR
Line: 17lb Surecatch Tournament (40lb Vanish fluorocarbon leader)
Set-up Two (Tailor-Spin)
Rod: 8-10kg Spin Live Fibre
Reel: 7500 Penn Spin Fisher
Line: 30lb Penn Pro Power Braid (yellow) 30lb double as leader
Set-up Three (Small surf)
Rod: 9’ Synder Glass
Reel: 2500 Daiwa Capricorn
Line: 8lb Fireline (black)
(12lb Vanish fluorocarbon leader)Reads: 7357