Ah... at last. It's just gone 1AM Saturday morning and finally all the preparation is done. There has been so many loose ends to tie up in the past few weeks I don't know where to begin, other than to say it's a huge relief that I've accomplished pretty much everything I was hoping to in the preparation for this trip and done so just in time. In the next couple of hours Shep will arrive to pick me up and then begin our journey to Yeppoon. Well be catching up with Rhett when we get there and launch will take place Sunday. It's going to be epic!
I'd like to say a big thanks to all those who helped out in making this dream-expedition of mine a reality. Huge thanks to Rapala, who have supplied such a mean assortment of lures that they've left me no options to be blaming my lures on poor performance. On the contrary - if the fish are on, I'll be hooking them up, thanks to Rapala. Also to Okuma for supplying brand new reels for the trip (New Salina 2's and Trio 40S) as well as Railblaza for hooking me up with some camera booms for my GoPro cams, which will guarantee the optimal shooting angles.
I can't thank Hobie enough for supplying me with a Navionics card for the trip, as well as looking after me on a few potentially critical spares. Also to Doug and Sandy from Maclean Outdoors, who have helped out in numerous ways, not least of which helping to outfit me and my kayak for the trip. A few other individuals worthy of thanks include Dunebuggy, for lending me a radio and GoPro cam (well be meeting up with him along the way to yeppoon), as well as Carl for helping out with some of his camping fish recipes and ingredients tips, among other things. I hope to catch up with him at Cape Hillsborough. Holger also, who popped in last weekend to visit - it was great to bounce ideas around with him.
Last but not least, massive thank you to Shep for offering to not only drive me to my intended launch destination and then pick me up and drive me back at the end, but also ghost my passage by land and vehicle, meeting up with me at several designated waypoints along the way (Stanage, Cape Hillsborough, Bowen, Maggie Isl/Townsville). Really, I just can't thank him enough. I was fully prepared to do this trip completely alone and although it's still technically a solo trip, having him there at the start, along the way and at the end is a massive help and a great backup to have. It will help to make my trip more productive, enjoyable and most of all, safer.
This trip could take as little as 2 weeks, possibly 3, 4 if it has to. I'll be writing diarie entries each day and will upload these throughout the trip whenever I get web access. I'll also include some photos here and there, but the bulk of it will be revealed upon my return, at which point I shall begin the massive task of compiling all the photos and footage and then editing a documentary together. It's going to be quite a ride!