1100 Grassy Gully Rd, Buangla NSW

Coolendel Campground

Coolendel Campground is about 22 kms west of Nowra on the NSW south coast. We ventured down there for a long weekend getaway, not expecting to be greeted with so many other people with the same idea! Coolendel looks pretty amazing in the pictures, but I have to say it left me a little disappointed, partly because it was not as nice as expected, and some of the other patrons were just disrespectful and downright annoying. On top of that, the dirt road in is very dangerous, not because the surface is rough, but because it is single lane in many places and has many blin corners.

Photographed using

Coolendel Campground

Firstly, this is not a place to go and get away from the riff raff, because they seem to come too, in droves. So for me personally, it is far too crowded. More than that, unless you can get there a pick a spot close to the river, you may as well be in a park. So apart from the wildlife that you do get fairly close up with, I will not be venturing back anytime soon I have to say.

The entire Coolendel Campground was filled with butterflies, they are just the common brown butterflies, but they made for interesting targets. If you think photographing birds is difficult (and it is) then forget butterflies as they are almost impossible as they flitter from one spot to the next. I did however manage to snap the above image in a moment of rest for this brown butterfly.

As well as the common brown butterflies, I also notice a dead cicadae frozen in a tree which put the macro abilities of my new Sony 70-200mm G Master II lens and Sony 2x Teleconverter to the test. All of the images on this page were shot with this combination, and I have to say it performed really well, and delivered very sharp images.

Other wildlife you will see in Coolendel Campground are Lace Monitors, quite large ones too. The above Lace Monitor was about 1.4 metres long, others we saw were around the 1 metre mark. It was common for these Lace Monitors (and the Wombats) to wonder through the middle of your campsite at various times during the day and night.

While there is plenty of bird life around you, most are hidden in the foliage of the trees. I did however manage to snap the Noisy Friarbird (Honeyeater) you see above, not exactly an attractive bird but it gave me a chance to test the new lenses once again. We were going to go to Coorongooba Campground for this long weekend but it was flooded in, a shame as it would have been a better destination.

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