Cook’s Beach

Cook’s beach and campsite is only four short kilometers from Hazards Beach. Our second day tramping the Freycinet Peninsula Circuit, we only walked for an hour and a half.

Located on the western side of the peninsula, Cook’s beach is the second stretch of sandy walking for travelers who want to restock on water. Rain water is collected from the roof of an old caretaker hut and must be treated before use.

But between the easy access to water, the gum tree shaded campsites facing the bay, and the actual white sand beach, this is the perfect opportunity to stop and take time to appreciate the landscape.

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On a lazy day in paradise, with no time constraints to push us along, we set up camp, explored the site with its wallaby inhabitants, and read books on sand so clean it squeaked under our feet.

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There is a short trail that starts behind the caretaker’s hut which leads to Brian’s Beach. The trek takes approximately 45 minutes through the gum forest, until you emerge onto the south facing side of the peninsula on an uninhabited white beach.

The little inlet of water and beach is shaped like a tear drop, only allowing the gentlest of waves to lap up on the untouched shore. The peaceful water and the curved stretch of sand that leads you to different views out to the open sea are worth the detour.
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We arrived back at Cook’s in time for the sun to begin setting over the water. Without a cloud in the sky, the pinks and blues were still radiant from the horizon. A sail boat even floated past, adding to the picturesque sight.

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As evening rolled in, and we prepared to for dinner, we realized the result of going food shopping for a multiple night trip while sleep-deprived and hungover. Spread out in front of us for some fuzzy, half-drunk reason was: 6 bananas, a glass jar of pasta sauce, a pound of pasta shells, a quarter cabbage, one head of broccoli, 3 apples, a can of bbq beans, a jar of peanut butter, a loaf of bread, a glass jar of jam, a packet of Tim Tams, and oh yeah, an entire chicken.

No wonder our packs seemed heavy.

Well-fed and heavy-lidded, we were tucked up into our tent before it was full dark.

-Megan

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