I am having a fair few people asking how we went with Cyclone Nathan
- asking if there was a newsletter about it.
Well, I was not rushing it while there was so much exaggeration
reported by news channels. The
damage was not big in town,
it was nowhere close to what Cyclone Ita did last year.
But it's time for a newsletter anyway, another news being that there is no Wet Season, not at least in
In This Issue:
• Cyclone Nathan in Cooktown
• The Wet Season So Far
• Site to Go Mobile Friendly
• Feedback Always Welcome
To Australians I don't need to mention what a weird year it has been,
with a very quiet season until late February, then double, even triple cyclones
- first Lam and Marcia, now Nathan, Olwyn and Pam.
But the weirdest of all - cyclone Nathan, was around for a good couple
of weeks, visited our coast first, then went out to the sea, only to
return to the Cooktown area on a second round (and later as we know
to Northern Territory to the areas affected by Lam only a
And still, during the whole time that it was on the Coral
Sea, we really did not
think that it
would return to Cooktown.
With 50 years of no cyclones and then
Ita last year, it was
a thought that we'd have severe cyclones two years in a row in the same
But by the beginning of last week we were looking at BOM maps in
disbelief, and sometime mid-week the reality started to sink
And here we were sitting
last Friday, once again with windows taped and generators
ready for work-out.
Our TV warnings on Thursday 19. March
On Wednesday the
Cat 4 was predicted to come straight to Cooktown, and that
was when we did our preparation.
On Thursday the prediction changed to further north to Cape Flattery,
Cooktowners down enough to stay at home instead of going to the cyclone
We, too, stayed at home, and - were
awake the whole night. Even
if we had wanted, the noise would not have made it easy to fall asleep.
It was around midnight as Nathan started getting really close to
the coast, and some time
between 1am and 3am were the worst hours.
It was blowing from the same side as it was during Ita - from the
north-east - straight into my office wall, and in between most
gusts, every now and
again there was a stronger one, that was loud enough that I
jumped up, watching if the window
But it helped that Nathan headed north, and not right at us as first
was a lot calmer than Ita, we did not hear trees snapping or
Until - there was a loud
- right on the wall outside.
We stick our heads out the toilet window - only to see it's the
neighbour's garden shed - completely demolished - flown to us and now
banging into our wall.
Most neighbours were up, there were lights everywhere, and we were just
wondering for how much longer were we going to have the power.
Luckily that was towards
3am and the winds started to calm, Nathan was just about
to cross the coast north of Cape Flattery, but was by now getting away
from our Cooktown area.
As the winds died off the rain picked up, and we finally felt we could
have a couple of hours' sleep.
Botanical Gardens the morning after - only small
Once the daylight arrived and it was ok to go out to the town, we went
checking the damage.
And the good thing was - there
was none. Almost, anyway.
A tree down in the riverfront park, but not lots of them like after
Branches on the ground, small ones, and not much. Surely a bit more in
back yards, but still, nothing compared to Ita.
Once again we had had a very good luck.
Obviously if Wednesday's
prediction held and we had a Cat 4 coming right to
the town, things would have been very different.
Instead, Cape Flattery
copped it, and it was also the place where Cyclone
Ita first crossed the land last year, before downgrading and
coming to Cooktown.
so little inhabited, but after two direct hits from Cat Fours
and this year, it will
be a very broken place, for a long time, along
with Lizard Island.
We do intend to go and
have a look, but from
experience with Ita and the time it takes before everything opens up
again, we will not be able to get in there for a good couple
months, it will take time to even clean the track from fallen
WET SEASON SO FAR
As for the rest of the Wet
Season I can say that in
has been hopeless.
Ok, we had rains during every passing
cyclone. Both Lam and Marcia formed on the Coral Sea outside
Cooktown, and Lam brought us a fair bit of rain when it first crossed
the peninsula, still as a Tropical Low.
rest of the days during this season have been mostly clear and sunny.
need the rain so it's not really good, and also thinking are the rains
now staying in the sky or are they coming late and pouring down during
our early travelling season ...
Archer River crossing as it has been much of
the Wet this year. Photo courtesy Brett Jenkins - thank you!
Further up the Cape, however, Archer
River has been cutting off
Weipa and the rest of the peninsula for months now, so the
conditions have obviously
been a lot wetter.
I will update this, and the roads, as we are getting closer to the
TO GO MOBILE FRIENDLY
And finally - this time
next month the website will be mobile friendly, meaning
even if you don't bring your laptop to your trip, you can
easily read the site on your mobile phone (before that happens the text is too small on mobile screens).
It means I will have to
change the design of the site some time during the coming month,
and it won't be too flash to be useful :-)
I really appreciate any kind of feedback
on the Destination Guide.
me know if you enjoyed it while planning before the trip, and
while using the
information once on the
If you get any questions
anything, please feel welcome to contact me.
That's all for this time - happy
Have a great day :-)
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