Heidi Krajewsky and Stephen Anstee

BY RIVER AND SEA Oct’19 by Frank Tuckwell

Last month while things were comparatively quiet, we worked on refining our team working procedures and developing an effective public relations plan to cover both the local scene and communities along inland river system across the Basin and much wider. To do this we have called for reliably minded volunteers to come on board with the Inland Rivers National Marathon team to build an effective PR group to handle our message both at home and away.

Our first responder to the call was our own team member, Angela Brewers who lives in the ACT. Angela proposed putting up a Facebook page for the IRNM Register as a very effective way of spreading its message widely. Angela’s proposal was accepted, and she will be creating and editing the IRNMR page which is now on-line.

Angela became known and popular with our team when she spent time doing research at the Goolwa Museum supported by her mother Christine, over several periods while writing her theses for her degree while studying at ANU. We fondly refer to her as “our girl in Canberra”, who together with her father Mike, are the joint authors of their top-selling history book Murray Darling Journeys, which was launched in Goolwa by Mayor Keith Parkes in 2017.

Angela currently has a work contract with the Centre of Indigenous Knowledge at the National Museum, and she loves her work there. Mike, her father, is well known in this end of the river having attained two entries himself in the IRNMR and is one of a few who hold the Source to Sea accreditation. Besides doing his own voyages down the river, he has generously given his time accompanying others at different periods to support them in their quests.

Our latest arrivals for the season were Heidi Krajewsky and Stephen Anstee, a young couple who had commenced their journey at the Hume Dam at Albury on the 7th July in a two-person kayak, to make the trip in mid-winter to Goolwa and the Murray Mouth. They stepped onto the sandy beach of the little boat harbour at the downstream end of the Goolwa wharf on Sunday September 15th, on a near perfect 26degree spring day.

Crossing Lake Alexandrina was well timed by setting out in the early morning hours using the light from the full moon of the month to slip quietly through the lake’s smooth water at that time, making for a pleasant final paddle to enter the Goolwa channel and arriving at journey’s end at lunchtime. Heidi and Stephen met with the IRNMR team at the Goolwa National Trust History Centre and Museum in the early afternoon where the duty registrar, Kathy Sutton interviewed the couple and received their application for entry into the IRNM Register. Team members were impressed with Heidi’s logbook, a handwritten illustrated account of their journey. Their register application was accepted.

Duty photographer Beth Nixon chose the little boat harbour as the site for pictures taking of the IRNMR certificate presentation to the couple and to record their departure for the Murray Mouth. Heidi and Stephen stayed overnight at the Mouth then returned to stay with friends on Hindmarsh Island for a couple of days before returning home to Hobart.

There are strong indications that during the spring-autumn window for river travel to Goolwa may produce a near record number of arrivals at this end of the river.