Shock as private fence found strung across the Mary River
A KAYAKING trip down the Mary River has left one adventurer shocked after he discovered a private fence strung across the river just south of the Traveston Crossing.
Tim Williams said he encountered the fence while he was checking his geocaches – boxes hidden along the river to be found by adventurers using GPS.
Geocaching has been a phenomenon since the turn of the century; millions of boxes are tucked away in corners across the globe.
Mr Williams said he was looking into the condition of the caches he had stowed away ahead of an expedition of people from the state’s south, but a fence across the river scuttled everyone's plans.
But the fence is not against the law.
A Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy spokesman said landholders were within their rights to protect their property.
“During times when water levels are low, farmers may install fencing to ensure that stock do not wander beyond the property’s boundaries,” he said.
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But Mr Williams said the fence had cost Gympie in tourism, and would continue to have an impact.
“It stopped 16 people from as far away as the Gold Coast and South Brisbane from paddling in the river and spending money in the local area,” Mr Williams said.
He said the fence had “only gone up in the past three weeks”.
“It’s very new.”
Given the popularity of tourism sites spruiking kayaking from the Vic Olsen Bridge to Traveston, he said fencing off river access would cost the region more than it would ever know.
Mr Williams said kayakers would be forced to enter private property to get past it and “the last thing they want is a p----- off farmer around while they are walking up the waterway”.