Posted by: travelrat | August 17, 2011

Cape Tribulation

Cape Tribulation: 20th August 2010

We stopped for lunch at Cape Tribulation, named by James Cook, who ‘discovered’ the Barrier Reef . Actually, he was ‘in his hammock and a thousand miles away’ when he hit it with Endeavour. He managed to patch his ship by ‘fothering a sail over’ (basically bandaging!) the resultant hole … it seems he’d read his ‘Hornblower’ books! … and sail to a sheltered spot where he was able to make more permanent repairs, otherwise the history of Australia might have been totally different.

Meanwhile, he sent his Sailing Master, Robert Molyneaux, with a party of men in a small boat to chart the reef, and see if he could discover an easy passage out of it. By this time, he was running out of crew members to name things after … you may remember, when he passed the Carlo Sandblow, he’d already got down to the cabin boy. So, with appealing simplicity, he called the reef the Great Barrier Reef, and the place he’d run aground Cape Tribulation.

There’s a nice beach here, but, unless you have a ‘sting suit’, it’s only for walking on … and even then, you’re advised to keep your shoes on. At each entrance to the beach, there are warning signs and bottles of vinegar, to treat jellyfish stings. But, if you get eaten by a shark or a crocodile, there’s not much they can do about that!



  1. HI Kieth,
    Yes there is a lot of dangerous water up that way, but still it is a beautiful place. It is surprising the number of people that don’t take any notice of the signs, and some unfortunately get into a bit of trouble.

  2. It’s funny but in the old days we used to rub sand on stings. I don’t know where that idea came from but it actually made things worse. Ouch. Vinegar would have been perfect.

    • Any acid will do (but I don’t recomment battery acid! :D) In extreme circumstances, some survival manuals even say you can pee on it (or, rather, if you’re not a contortionist, get someone to do it for you!)

      Maybe the sand cure like the dock leaf for nettle stings? All the ‘informed opinion’ says it shouldn’t work … but I know from experience it does.

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