Bicycle ahoy!

Last week, riding home from the beach, I saw a strange sight on Currumbin Creek. It floated on two hulls. They were the type of hulls that a catamaran uses, only smaller. Yellow, buoyant and atop sat a man on a bicycle.

He pedalled and the craft moved. He turned the handlebars and the hulls slowly changed direction. I pedalled to a vantage point on Thrower Bridge, jumped off my bike and hastily unclipped my pannier in search of my camera. Moments later he’d floated under the bridge. I crossed the creek and looked out from the underpass for a water-level view of this new contraption. Fascinated, I then rode home only to realise that my beach towel was missing.

Clipped to the outside of my pannier, I guessed the towel had dropped somewhere after opening my pannier on the bridge. I rode back, retracing my trail from home, and found my towel kindly placed by someone over the bridge railing.

With the towel secured, I was ready to ride home for breakfast but something took me in another direction – my curiosity about the bicycle boat. Curiosity keeps me learning and creating new experiences. Breakfast could wait.

By now, the bicycle boat was moored on the creek’s southern bank. The bicycle boatman stood nearby. It was time to talk.

Sean the bicycle boatman has imported the Hydrobike as a new venture. He has another six on their way from the USA and they’ll be available for hire on Currumbin Creek.

I enjoyed having a yarn about these floating bicycles. Memories of Lakeland Playland seeped in from the recesses of my mind from Bargara in the 1970s. Down the road from my childhood home, Moneys Creek flowed from the sugar cane fields into the Coral Sea. The creek was a haven for sandflies so a causeway was built creating a lagoon. In the early 1970s, this lagoon became home for a fun park called Lakeland Playland which hired miniature jet boats and paddle boats propelled by pedalling!

While those pedal boats were strictly for kids, this modern interpretation looks suitable for a variety of ages. Sean kindly invited me to try the modern day bicycle boat. After adjusting the seat height and a few instructions about steering, I was pedalling on water! Bicycle Ahoy!

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Bicycle boat on Currumbin Creek. Propellor in upright position locks into the pedal.

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Hatch at the front of the bicycle boat.

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Test riding – that yellow and black colour combination is very familiar…

(If you’re interested in hiring the Hydobike on Currumbin Creek, head to the south bank at Thrower Bridge near the big fig tree.)

20 Comments on “Bicycle ahoy!

  1. Another engaging and interesting story Gail. I love the bicycle boat. I tried something similar in the Noosa River – it was a lot of fun.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s great to know Maree, thanks! I only had a short try of it but soon caught on to the steering and enjoyed it. Good fun! The craft is surprisingly stable.

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  2. Hello Gail You find such interesting things! The bicycle boat looks like it would move along reasonably well. A nice stable option for some fun on the water. Perhaps an option for the calm water fisherman? Bit tricky for the roof rack though☺ Jen

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha 😂 yes definitely not a toy for travelling away on weekends Jen 😄

      It would be stable enough to fish from but the fishing kayaks have probably got the edge for that purpose. Maybe the next evolution of the bicycle boat..?

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  3. I never thought I’d see that! Gail, you look like you’ve been doing it for years. It brought back memories of the pedal-o – not sure how that is spelt but it was a much less sophisticated version of the water bike with big plastic wheels.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sounds a bit like the type we pedalled at Lakeland Playland (that’s a classic name isn’t it). They used pedal power but looked much less like a bike than this hydrobike.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi, Gail. When I tried to read on I got, “Not found

    ERROR 404”. Not knowing what EROR 404 is I don’t know how to correct it.

    Bob

    >

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    • Hi Margaret, I’m guessing it might be quite popular just for being a little different and having the familiarity of a bicycle… it’ll be a lot of fun for people on their summer holidays for sure 😄

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    • Our creek is a very popular waterway for craft of all sorts and mostly non-motorised such as kayaks, skis and Stand-up paddle boards. So I think the bicycle boat will fit in well.

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