Penguin Point

In the Australian summer on the south coast we can be bothered by many things, flies, mosquitoes, snakes, march flies, a hot sun, ants, jelly fish, sting rays, pounding waves and vicious under tows……you would think that a sunny day at the beach would be the worst place to be in Australia. And yet we flock to the beaches, and enjoy the wonders of a spectacular and yet unpredictable coastline.
I have learnt a few lessons over the years that seem to keep me safe, try these and see if you are happier at the seashore.

1. Having been washed out to sea in seconds when I was a lot younger I am very cautious to check the area for rips. Firstly read the signs and take heed. Look for an area with no waves and white water going out to sea. Stay close to the shore and put your feet on the ground regularly.
2. I never venture out too deep if the area is known for sharks, which is most of our coastline.
3. I apply sunscreen, and reapply later especially my face, and lately I’ve taken to carrying a very light sarong which I immediately drape around my shoulders as soon as I get out of the water. Always wear a sun hat.
4. I never, ever swim alone.
5. I carry an insect net which goes over my sun hat and use it when I need to. Flies are notoriously attracted to facial features, especially mine, and South Aussie has many flies. You can use an insect repellent if you like.
6. I check the ocean waves before setting up camp, especially at surfing beaches where the waves can come in a lot further unannounced. Let me explain. Many years ago with my brand new camera we were equipped and ready to photograph the surfers for the day. Umbrella up and gear placed neatly in piles, within about 10 minutes a huge “after surge” from a powerful wave raced up the beach and absolutely saturated all our gear including my new lens. Fortunately I had my camera in my hand only the lens was ruined. Towels all soaking, food all gone…etc. I learnt my lesson the hard way, when the surf is up you keep a big distance from the shoreline.
7. Never go to an Aussie beach without an umbrella. It gets very hot here. We have a new umbrella which has a tie down for windy days. A marvellous invention.
8. Travel lightly. Buy lightweight cameras, …lightweight umbrella and chairs etc.
9. Don’t take those silly blow up toys out on our beaches when the day is windy, which is most days along our coastline. Two summers ago we had a drowning as a mother tried to save her child who was blown out to sea on a blow up floatation animal.
9.Don’t touch jelly fish, don’t touch stingrays, and look out for concealed rocks beneath the sand. Many a stubbed toe has resulted from kicking an unmovable rock just under the sand.
10. If you are going to venture along the cliffs for a few photographs, either watch out for snakes or wear snake protectors.
11. Don’t take young children swimming at a big wave beach.

I guess that has put you off our beaches…is this my secret weapon for keeping you off the incredibly pristine beaches in South Australia? Well I hope not!
Many flock to the overcrowded beaches in Queensland, where you sit within two inches of another tanned, greased body. But the South Australian coastline although isolated is extremely beautiful and truly lovely for swimming.
Wherever you are, stay safe.



Wendy Philip - artist.

Through the beautiful art of photography, I hope that you enjoy the vibrance of the Southern parts of our earth. I photograph mainly local landscapes. I am a story teller, writing a blog when I feel inspired. I also have a love for houses and interior and exterior decor. Stay with me and venture into the wonderful world of photography and beyond.

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