Port Douglas, Rainforest and Reef…

After a hectic but fun week working in Sydney and Brisbane for a new client (who has become a firm friend!) photographing industrial construction products, we headed up to Cairns and then onto Port Douglas for a few days relaxation in tropical Far North Queensland… I must warn that this is an image heavy post..!

I have visited the Daintree river and Mossman Gorge many years ago, and on this visit I again found myself wondering why I did not head up here more often… It is so beautiful, and a walk in the rainforest such a tonic for the soul. Following our guide through the rainforest we happened upon two beautiful lizards at entirely different locations; both clinging to the trees and virtually entirely motionless in a bid to avoid detection. Certainly they displayed superb camouflage, but still the most impressive display had to be the spider that we came across at Cape Tribulation; the only way we were able to spot this arachnid was because our eagle-eyed guide had seen it the day before. Apparently the white blob of nest sac in the front legs had given it away…

Mossman Gorge - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
6 image stitch of Mossman Gorge; it is possible in the enlarged print to see normally shy little turtles basking on the river rocks… if you approach, they slip quickly back into the water… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Fig tree in the Daintree Rainforest - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
This tree was being strangled by the creeper fig; the seeds of the creeper fig land on the host tree, germinate and then over time begin to completely encase the host. Growing ever upwards towards the light, the host is eventually killed off and rots away within it’s living tomb… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Leaf insect in the Daintree Rainforest - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
That David Attenborough moment when you come across an interesting Leaf insect… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Tree lizard - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
As I am not a reptile expert, I have no idea what type of lizard this is – except that he /she is quite stunning… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Mossman Gorge - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Beautiful Mossman Gorge… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Tree Lizard - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michael
Another view of the first lizard we encountered… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Mossman Gorge - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Overcast, with a light rain…so incredibly peacefull at Mossman Gorge… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Tree Lizard - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michael
Playing peek-a-boo..? © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Ferns in the Daintree Rainforest - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Ferns in the Daintree Rainforest – © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Fern detail - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Fern detail… I liked this in colour, but just felt that the BW conversion gave it more interesting structure…© Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Flower in Daintree region - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Incredible plant life… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Tree Lizard - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
The second lizard for the day, posing nicely… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Looking out at Cape Tribulation - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
A 5 image stitch looking out to Cape Tribulation. I believe the island on the left featured in the Tom Hanks produced ‘Pacific’ war drama series… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Tree Lizard - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013  - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
I took all the lizard shots using the 70-200 at about 2.8 as it was actually quite dark under the forest canopy… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013

After our time in the rainforest we headed out to the Daintree river for  cruise… Alas, although this river is teeming with very large, and very dangerous crocodiles we saw not a single one, it being the wrong time of year. As our guide explained, the only certain way of spotting one would have been for me to go water skiing behind the boat, an offer I courageously declined… Then it was a short drive further up the coast to the beautiful beach at Cape Tribulation.

Heron (?) on the Daintree...perilously close to the water! - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Heron (?) perilously close to the water on the Daintree river… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Cape Tribulation beach - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
A 5 image stitch of Cape Tribulation beach… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Island near Cape Tribulation- © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.comCape Tribulation
Island near Cape Tribulation © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Cape Tribulation - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
The beach at Cape Tribulation © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Sand pattern caused by a tiny crab. Cape Tribulation beach - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Sand pattern caused by a tiny crab. Cape Tribulation beach – © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Jellyfish sign - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
It has now been found that the ubiquitous vinegar found underneath these signs is fairly ineffectual… apparently urine is a good substitute..! © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Spider on tree - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
I had to crank the clarity up in post in order to bring this little spider out… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013

After a tough day at the beach, we decided to head out on a sunset sailing cruise out of Port Douglas; with the Champagne flowing, this was indeed tough to take (!), but was perfect preparation for the next day’s highly anticipated day on the GBR…

Sunset cruise, Port Douglas - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
A champagne sunset cruise… gotta love tropical FNQ!! © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Port Douglas - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
This is the headland as we slipped out of Port Douglas for our sunset cruise on board the Aquarius. Now I am not a wedding photographer, but as I shot this I noticed the wedding in progress… Not a bad place to tie the knot! © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Wedding in Port Douglas- © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Close up crop from the same image of the wedding… © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Sunset cruise, Port Douglas - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Sunset over Port Douglas harbour.. © Michael Evans Photographer 2013
Restaurant at Port Douglas Harbour - © Michael Evans Photographer 2013 - www.michaelevansphotographer.com
Dining over Port Douglas harbour © Michael Evans Photographer 2013

All images were taken with the Canon 5D Mk III and the 24-105 f4 and 70-200 f2.8 L IS USM… Although I took a flash with me (the 600EX), I did not use it once… By now however, I am more than used to carrying excess kit! We stayed at the Mantra Portsea throughout our time in Port Douglas, which considering how little we saw of our small room was absolutely fine, and very close to 4 Mile Beach. All the restaurants within the town were of a very high standard, which as our guide on the day trip explained was certainly out of necessity since the town really thrives on being a tourist destination.

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4 thoughts on “Port Douglas, Rainforest and Reef…

  1. Hi Michael,

    A different style post from you, and it’s superb.

    We never associate Australia with the rain forests and tropical flora and fauna.

    My pick from this set is the Sunset Shot.

    Beautiful layers of hills and clouds.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Have a nice day.

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