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Unfaovourable winds meant a change in plans; and with that we headed off to Inverloch

Inverloch was buzzing just like old times with walkers, runners, cyclists and families all out making the most of the sun and freedom.

Once on the water there were a few challenges, a sand bar to negotiate and choppy water caused by a sneaky wind. Our destination being the quiet waters of Screw Creek. The muddy banks exposed the extensive white mangroves, the only Southern species of mangrove, with aerial roots sticking up through the mud to take in oxygen. Being a tidal estuary, we were able to drift along using very little effort to progress up stream under the walking bridge, which was built in 1975 and upgraded in 1995.

Several fishing platforms line the bank making easy access for families eager to drop a line in. We saw a few mud crabs on the muddy banks and there were various small birds flitting through the branches of swamp paperbark and eucalyptus woodland. At the main bridge, on the Inverloch Venus Bay Rd, the remains of the timber pylons from the original bridge were visible on the water’s edge. All too soon we ran out of water so had the most wonderful “sit and wait” time, just relaxing waiting for the tide to turn. Lots of chatter while soaking up the lovely atmosphere. My thoughts wandered to the local aboriginal people who for thousands of years were protected by the Dreamtime Spirit Loh-em who guarded Townsends Bluff which towers above Screw Creek. Aborigines camped on dunes close to the creek on their way to the vast swamps of the Tarwin River, where food was rich and plentiful.

With the water level much higher our downstream journey provided a very different vista. In our eagerness to get back to Inverloch we encountered another sandbar, so had to wade over the shallow water towing our boats. The last leg of our paddle was great fun with the wind whipping up rolling waves for us to negotiate. Back on shore we quickly loaded, then tucked into late lunch. Fish and chips were the popular treat. It was great to have Sue Ratcliffe back paddling with us, free at last from months of Melbourne lockdowns.

Thanks to Don for leading this enjoyable paddle.

Participants:- Don Creed (Leader), Avenel Casson, Sue Ratcliffe, Sue Steward, Roz Spratt, Josie Lomagno, Jean Fear, Shane Bright, Kaye Walton and Pat Williams.

Inverloch Paddle 06.11.21 b  Inverloch Paddle 06.11.21 d