Woody Head Campground – Spring Break 2016
By Mario Santini
Woody Head near Iluka, NSW must be one of the most popular campgrounds on the North Coast. Nestled inside Bundjalung National Park it features beaches, coastal rainforest, wildlife, rock pools, a boat ramp, and much more.
It is no longer a secret that Woody Head is a great destination for a family holiday. During peak season the campground is taken over by swarms of kids on bicycles, and the smell of wood-fired meals fills the air from early till late.
Many campsites feature creative tarp constructions and/or inventive kitchens that would have made MacGyver blush with envy. All mod-cons are left behind except for solar lights or other small solar kits for a genuine off-grid-living experience. There is, however, one item that no-one likes to leave behind – the precious 'Smart Phone'.
A mobile phone fits into any pocket and there's no reason not to bring it (reception is good), but there are no powered sites. Of course, smart phones can be recharged in the car, but the toll it takes on the vehicle's battery is often underestimated. According to the local roadside assistance mechanic, at least one service call-out per day is due to flattened car batteries at Woody Head.
During the 2016 spring break, Rainbow Power Company placed a Solar Powered Trailer in the middle of the campground and opened it for public use. The trailer features 10 lockable compartments, each equipped with 2 USB outputs, powerful enough to charge smart phones and/or tablets. The keyless lockers work like a hotel safe and were accessible for campers and day visitors free of charge.
The response was overwhelming. The lockers filled up within minutes every morning, and remained booked out for the greater part of the day. The service was provided on a 'first come, first served' basis but as most people want their phones back ASAP, a locker would sooner or later become available.
The charging station was particularly popular with teenagers, some would hang out and check the battery level every 15 minutes. Rainbow Power Company truly hopes that any parents' plan to wean off their offspring from electronic devices wasn't thwarted. On the other hand, no-one had to miss out on the daily Snapchat Challenge. Let us know if you do (or don't) want to see the Solar Trailer back at Woody Head for the next spring break.