Sunday, March 1, 2015

Magnificent Maggie

As part of the study abroad program I am in, we have a few excursions planned into our semester. I'm sure the intent of these trips is to integrate us into the Australian culture, but I view them as a fun get-away that's "free" even though I technically paid for it already.

Today's territory of interest is Magnetic Island, also known to the locals as Maggie Island. This beautiful island reminds me of Hawaii's big island, because it sports a variety of unique habitats from grassy flats to shear rock fields to billabongs, bays, and beautiful beaches. Just a warning to my sheltered friends from the U.S. there are nude beaches, so don't freak out and don't use your phones or cameras if you end up on one when you visit here.

Maggie is close enough to the main land to be home to many of same biota. I was thrilled to find a few Eastern Stripped Skinks and a beautiful Orange-flanked Rainbow-Skink. Sadly no snakes, but we did find a plethora of insects and fantastic plants.

The Island is webbed with foot trails and roads, but if you do plan to hike a fair distance, I would recommend some decent hiking boots. My blistered, shredded feet and flip-flops can attest to that.
Hydration is key. Even though everything becomes sweat in your clothes in short time any ways. The two men we met on the trail came prepared with a cooler of amber fluid (that's beer). Like I said, hydration is key.

After a short 5 hours we jumped back on the ferry and motored back to the main land. Soaked in sun, salt, and sweat; smiling like we knew a cold shower would greet us at our dorms :)

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