Four Mile Beach (NSW28728)

Beach trip Report

General Location Bermagui
Alternative Name Haywards Beach or Camel Rock Beach
Aboriginal Tribe/Language Group Yuin people
Access to beach Road Access within walking distance both ends
Beach Classification Wave Dominated – Intermediate – Transverse bar and rip
Start Date/Time 30 Mar 2017 – 07:20
Start Location (inc Lat/Log) Northern end S36° 22.712’ E150° 04.665’
End Date/Time 30 Mar 2017 – 08:33
End Location (inc Lat/Log) Southern end S36° 24.583’ E150° 03.906’
Mode/s of Travel Bike/push bike
Record Distance Travelled 3.65km
Location of Sand Sample (lat/Long) S36° 23.454’ E150° 04.184’ – 07:49

The beach has a few alternative names however was listed in Geoscience Australia as Four Mile Beach, even though it is not 4 miles long but only about 2.2 miles. Four Mile Beach or Haywards Beach, is also refereed to by some as Camel Rock Beach in the north and Long Swamp Beach in the south.

Murunna Point is composed of 450 million-year-old metamorphic rocks that have been eroded to form 30 m high sea cliffs fronted by rocks, reefs and sea stacks, including one rock formation in the shape of a camel.

Part of the rock formation also resembles the face of a women, the Yuin people believe the women warns people to stay away from the water which has dangerous rips. The whole headland is a very important sacred site for the Yuin people.

The Wallaga Lakes Road runs along the bluffs behind the northern section of the beach then turns inland around Long Swamp. The road used to run along the entire length of the beach until part of the southern section was eroded by big seas in 1978 and then that section was closed. There is now in its place a walking track of about 1km in length. The other end of the old road recommences at Hayward bluff providing access to the southern end of the beach.

The northern end of the beach picks up most swell and has waves averaging 1.5 m in the north, decreasing to 1 m in the south.

After camping the night at Brou Lake Camping Ground, Joanne and I woke very early before sunrise to get to Camel Rock Carpark, as close to sunrise as possible this was about a 36km drive south along the Princes Highway. Low tide was at 04:44 with a very high tide predicted at 10:55 later that morning. So, it would be to our advantage to get an early start.

On arriving at Camel Rock Carpark, we were greeted with a strong cold blustery south westerly wind and over cast skies. It was not the best conditions for a bike ride but I proceeded down to the beach, took some quick pictures and jumped on my bike.

The waves and heavy swell out to sea made the slim patch of rideable sand close to the water’s edge difficult to negotiate. About 600m into the ride I came across my second occurrence of beach art, slightly better, I judged than the art on previous beach but could not give much more than a 4.5 out of 10. Further on down the beach it started to become impossible to ride so for the last 1.2km I resorted to pushing the bike through the loose sand. Given the experiences I had the day before on Five Mile Beach there was no way I was going to play around with tyre pressures on this day.

Cold and slightly wet I reach the southern end of Four Mile Beach. Using the Satellite phone, I called Joanne to tell her I had finished. Joanne had not driven to the southern end of Long Swamp but was 1km back up the beach at the northern carpark of Long Swamp. No problem as I had completed this beach, I rode north using the sheltered walking track behind the beach a very enjoyable easy cycle to meet up with Joanne.

So three beach completed, preparations and planning were now in complete for the next big challenge; the might Ninety Mile Beach down to East Gippsland, Victoria.

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