Winter loves Rottnest Island

How do you imagine spending a winter’s day? In a log cabin somewhere in the snow perhaps, with mulled wine simmering by a roaring fire. Or preferably huddled under the blankets at home with a movie & someone cuddly. Well, we were lucky enough to get shipped over to Rottnest for nearly 3 weeks’ work recently and were amazed at how glorious it is in the wintry weather.

I admit I felt more than a little over-eager when I packed the snorkel, fins & boardies. It paid off. After some early rain, we caught the sunrise on a perfect day fishing at Ricey Beach. We lost a rig and I decided to go in and save it. It was absolutely glorious in the water; plenty warmer than the air out – and I figured out why we weren’t catching anything, too. There were about 5,000 herring surrounding the hook, but they were all fast asleep. What an amazing sight.

A quokka at our door © AshNathens 2015

A quokka at our door © AshNathens 2015

It was Yoon-Mi’s first trip out to the Island (and my first trip in years) – and she’d never been fishing in her life. I gave her a quick demonstration at the Army Jetty, and thankfully grabbed a herring on the first cast just to keep up appearances of being super proficient. I gave her the sixty-second primer on humanely killing, gutting & cleaning a fish thinking, well, what better way to impress a girl than such a manly skill? I should have known better. My girl is all over this stuff. 24 hours later she was teaching me a trick or two about fish cleaning and preparation for the table. I couldn’t get her away form the water for the rest of the trip; hail, rain or shine, she was down there at sunrise and sunset with a line in the water.

Of course, the other thing she hadn’t ever seen before was a Quokka. Well, she had to get all grrly about something. They really are the laziest creatures on earth. In the middle of the day when they’re ready for a nap, they just curl their head over onto their belly, shut their eyes and pretend the world  doesn’t exist for a little while. They have absolutely no regard for personal safety – they will sleep like this anywhere. In the middle of a road, on a beach with a rising tide, near an Osprey nest… they care not a squat. Oh, to live with such utter disdain of the world and all its evils. We could all learn a thing from the well-fed, fearless little quokka.

One of the most wonderful things about Rottnest in winter is that there are so few people on the island… it made for a pretty perfect trip. We got out biking around the whole island without the swarms of people, or the flies that are always around in summer – what a bonus that is. Most nights we caught our own dinner, and I don’t think we saw a television once.

Given the result in the #Ashes – no TV was twice the blessing.

Rottnest in winter? I highly recommend it.


Gallery of images

Links: Rottnest (wiki)Rottnest Island (official) • Quokkas