I visited here in January 1979 on my first real parent-free “road trip” as an adult. There’d been several with my parents when I was a kid, mainly between Melbourne from whence we hailed, and Sydney where we’d moved when I was ten. But we’d never struck out north. Now. I’d just finished uni, and was travelling north with a couple of girlfriends, in the interregnum between leaving full time study for the first time in 16 years and starting work as a teacher. It had been school then uni, and now, as a bonded teacher trainee, I was guaranteed a job “somewhere in NSW”.
It’s hard to believe today, but you signed a bond at age 17 agreeing to be appointed anywhere in the state, went to uni, and then, being guaranteed a job, got a slip in the mail sometime in the week before school began in late January, and then you were off!
That was all several weeks away as we headed north. One of our number was a long-standing surfie chick and knew all the best “spots” up the north coast. Our ultimate destination was her married sister’s place in Caloundra, Qld. On the way we camped at Angourie, a really sleepy, tiny hamlet known then mainly by hard-core surfers.
Angourie’s Blue Pool was once a rock quarry that transformed into a pool when an underground freshwater spring was disturbed. It is a dazzling blue. I did not, unlike many, jump off the cliffs – never been a daredevil that way! I can remember that it was pretty chilly.
A relatively short walk along a track is the “Green Pool”, another former quarry. We swam here too, and I believe it was silkier and warmer.
Angourie is just outside YURAYGIR National Park and is 684km north of Sydney, 10km south of Yamba, 133km south of Byron Bay.
My photo of The Blue Pool, January 1979:
The Green Pool: