Double Island Point


Waves and tower from northern point.
8am or 8:40am 11th June 1987.
Nagaoka Field Camera 5×4″, f8/11 1/50 second, 90mm Linhof Schneider Angulon, Fujichrome 50, Polariser.

You can see Double Island Point lighthouse in the distance with big waves rolling in to the cliffs even though it’s a fairly calm day.  Clearly an appropriate place to build a lighthouse for the tricky passages inside the Great Barrier Reef.  Captain Cook named Double Island Point in 1770 because it looked like two islands, not because he thought it was two islands.


Waves and tower from northern point.
8:20am 11th June 1987.
Nagaoka Field Camera 5×4″, f8/11 1/50 second, 90mm Linhof Schneider Angulon, Fujichrome 50, Polariser.

I took two exposures from pretty much the same place.  This is the one that’s in the book.  By the clouds I’d guess there’s about 20 minutes between them.  This was also one of the prints that was in the exhibition in the Link Gallery and then the New Parliament House.  I have the exposure details because they were in the catalogue for the exhibition.  I made a database of all image details but that’s been lost.  I still have a notebook with details for many images but I must have been using a different one for Queensland.


I was not the only one who was impressed by the waves.  There were at least twenty surfers there and you can see some if you look carefully.


Here they are again, with three of them just catching the crest with the wave about to break.  They are of course large marine mammals, otherwise known as dolphins.


Nagaoka Field Camera 5×4″, exposure unknown, probably 90mm Linhof Schneider Angulon, Fujichrome 50, probably with Polariser.

Here is another view from a similar location, still looking towards the distant lighthouse.


This is one of the keepers’ quarters at Double Island Point.  The lighthouse was built in 1883 but the cottage would be much more recent as the original ones were later replaced.


Probably Arca-Swiss Monorail 5×4″ with Schneider Super Angulon 65mm.

Here is the stairwell of the lighthouse.  It is made of wood, as you can see, and the outer cladding of the lighthouse was metal.  This was a method of construction often used in Queensland, being both cheaper than traditional stone construction and sitting lighter on sandy soils.  When the clockwork mechanism rotated the prisms of the lighthouse, the weights slowly went down inside the central wooden column.


Here is a page of details of the lighthouse, on the centre column on the previous image.  You may just be able to read it (if you have a large enough screen or maybe if you click on it for a larger view).


This is the clockwork mechanism that originally rotated the lights, with a profusion of brass gears.  The keepers needed to wind it up every couple of hours or so.  It has however been replaced by the electric motor that sits on top of it.

10 comments on “Double Island Point

  1. […] Double Island Point (Qld) […]


  2. rondje says:

    Great shots, the details in the waves on the first ones is beautiful. Thanks for sharing, Ron.


  3. What a wonderful, detailed trip… Thanks for sharing this!


  4. Geoff May says:

    Hi Murray on your last photo showing the lens and the view of the station appears to be Cape Byron not Double Is Point.Im jealous that you got to visit and document so many ligthstations while still manned. Regards Geoff. (lighthouse lover)


  5. […] Double Island Point.  Waves and tower from northern point. […]


  6. […] and did not go out.  The turntable would have been driven by a clockwork mechanism such as at Double Island Point (last image).  A weight would have slowly descended the tower and then needed to be wound back […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s