After Cooktown and Lizard Island, another peculiar experience: the other day we anchored at Morris Island, a typical example of the islands in this part of the Great Barrier: a wide coral reef just under the surface, and a tiny islet just protruding out of the water, covered with bush and the occasional palm tree.
We anchored in a “cove” formed by the reef, not by the island, and at high tide when the reef is submerged it looks like we are anchored in the middle of the sea!
We went ashore in the dinghy, just to walk around the island, looking carefully around and avoiding entering the shrub because years ago a crocodile was reported living on the island.
We see and hear nothing suspicious, so after a while we go inland for maybe 10 meters, reaching a tomb under the shadow of the island’s only palm tree: probably a fisherman of the early 20th century, when ships working in the area had no other option, in case of the death of a crewmember, than burying him on one of the many islets. Not a rare occurrence, and these tombs exist in several places.
We returned to the boat without having seen any trace of the croc and thinking that, maybe he left the island years ago.
Next morning we set sail early for a long leg north, while “Stargazer” remains at anchor for a few more hours.
You should have seen our faces when, during the radio chat of the afternoon, the crew of “Stargazer” told us that they saw the crocodile! A beast of about 15 feet which first went sunbathing on the beach, few meters from the palm tree where we went yesterday, and then went in the water in search of food!
Fear in retrospective: probably due to the noise of 4 boats at anchor, with dinghies motoring back and forwards and people walking around the island, the croc opted to stay hidden, but we must have gone few meters from the beast without seeing or hearing it…
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