Over the Queens Birthday Long Weekend, while the southern mountains were covered in new snow and the air filled with grinding of chairlift gears and whoops of skier delight, up on the Southern Gold Coast, the air was filled with the sounds of rumbling bored-out V8’s and meaty exhausts. The Wintersun Festival made its last annual appearance at Coolangatta, filling all the streets with classic cars and hot rods, lots of folk in rock ‘n’ roll outfits and beehive hair (yes, Elvis era rock ‘n’ roll, not Guns ‘n’ Roses style, unfortunately).
It was pretty cool to see Coolangatta busy again, awakened from its winter slumber…but it did make it a pain in the arse to find a park for the surf during the week. Over the weekend half the roads were closed for street concerts, or just clogged with Ray Ban-wearing old dudes bubbling along in their gleaming labour of loves, and with very little surf around the best place to hit was Duranbah (the mosty northerly beach in NSW), and fortunately the traffic had scared off the water crowds…but unfortunately not all the smelly surf hippies.
I’ve always been a car fan, not so much for the very old hot-rod style rigs, but more the beasty 70’s American and Aussie muscle cars. On all the old cars the details and all the chrome is spectacular, much different to sleek modern cars (unless of course you buy one of those hideous HSV GTS). The Friday before the Long Weekend I managed to find a prime parking spot opposite the beach – as you can see in the above photo, my organge beast fits in quite well between the classics…but I did shit myself trying to reverse park it between those extra long cars, not wanting to even nudge the metalwork with so many car lovers around!
I spent half an hour walking the streets checking out all the cars – my favourite was the deep blue Chevy Camaro SS…until the owner took 5 spluttering, coughing attempts to start it. While these old cars look cool, there’s nothing like the reliability, safety and handling of new beasts – and to see how far they’ve come in 40 or so years, compare the Ford Mustang engine bay versus the Ford Falcon blown engine we saw out at the Holden Driving Centre that same weekend. Which would you rather own?