Sunday, 28 August 2016

22. EXMOUTH AND CAPE RANGE NATIONAL PARK

Heading back to the coast after traipsing around Karijini, we headed for Exmouth and Cape Range National Park, but before we get there- there's some barren country to pass through


Then at last we arrived.


  More gorges to explore.......and always enjoy just sitting and enjoying the serenity.


And as always in these National Parks, the scenery is amazing.


Meanwhile, back at camp, the sunset over the showers and dunnies (although very rustic) was pretty nice.


Back at the Lighthouse on the point there were some great signs.


In the park where we were staying we found a few birds that had line tangled all around their feet. and then this little guy came along and we couldn't believe that he didn't have any feet!


His name was obviously 'Stumpy" and apparently a camper cut his legs off years ago as they were so mangled by fishing line.  He doesn't seem to mind and get around pretty well.
After Cape Range we headed off to Kalbarrie where we came across another bird.


Not sure what sort of gull this is - have to look him up.
The coastline along here was pretty rugged.


then it was down to the peace and calm waters of Pt Gregory


and just nearby was a pink lake!!


West Australia is famous for it's wild flowers, some of the beach ones were pretty nice.


and some were very delicate......


I must be going soft...but I'm really liking finding these - might go look for some more of these famous flowers.....

Saturday, 13 August 2016

21. KARIJINI NATIONAL PARK TO PARABURDOO

Although we have made so many friends along the way, some we will be calling in to see as we travel, but we normally travel alone.  Not so for this leg of our journey.  We started travelling with another couple as we were all going the same way and it was great to have company for a while and to share the experience that is Karijini!  An amazing place.

I won't go through all the walks we did and the gorges we traversed, needless to say we have hiked more on this trip than ever before. and some of the pathways were unusual.


And around every corner we seemed to come across something pretty spectacular.


We stayed at Dale's camp ground and were lucky enough to get adjoining sites, especially as half an hour later they were turning people away - full up!  We seemed to spend most of our time hiking so a break was always welcome.


The natural beauty was sometimes in competition with some budding sculptors!  Saw lots of these on our travels.


and the pathways were always interesting, leaving you guessing as to what lay beyond.


then it was all worth the effort.


There are so many incredible areas here - just google Karijini for more information - its well worth the travelling to get here.  We really enjoyed every minute - can't you tell?


The walks are classified from 1 - 5,  5 being the most difficult and comes with warnings.  I am very proud to say that we conquered them all and came back smiling.
Some bits were uncomfortable.....

Wading through icy cold water with my boots strung around my neck.
And checking out where we still have to go.....


We had to traverse the cliff on the right, then further on spider walk between two cliff faces while the water rushed down below us.  No pics as Dave was pointing out a few foot holds while climbing himself.
But after that it was time for a laugh.


This was taken just as we stopped spider walking and were able to go sideways with support from the opposite cliff face.  Of course some of us had no problems at all???


There were unusual signs.


At first I thought it was warning of a giant Crocodile - haha  but its for falling rocks.  Any wonder when you see what holds some of them up.


One ranger told us that formations like this take a beating from the public - trying to break away the support.  Madness!!!  He said they don't even do helicopter rescues here as the risk of rock falls is just too great. But you do wonder how it could erode away like this.
There were some random beautiful rocks.


and we met up with this inquisitive little character.


All too soon it was time to move on from Karijini, our favourite of the National parks so far, even over Uluru and Kata Tjuta.
Then it was on to big mining country at Paraburdoo.


For some shopping and necessary household duties - washing and a good hot shower.
Then back to our favourite thing.


Bush camping, away from the crowds, free to do as we please and the night time sky is awsome!
Might just hang here a few more days.........

Friday, 12 August 2016

20. BARN HILL TO KARIJINI NATIONAL PARK

Heading South from Broome we called in to a farm stay called Barn Hill.  It was a lovely beach but the station stay left a bit to be desired.  There are people who spend months there every year supporting the owners but the owners don't seem to put anything back into the park for the people who support them. Enough of my opinions - as I said the beach was lovely though and made one person smile.


We spent quite a few hours walking on the sand here and there were some really fascinating rock formations in the dunes nearby.


This area they called 'The Pinnacles'
The camps we enjoy the most are the 'free camps'  for obvious reasons.  But not just because of the cost. Often times they are random with camp sites, nothing structured, but people tend to respect each others space and everyone seems more friendly and considerate. This was a great spot at De Grey River that we found.


I think I have mentioned before that Dave manages most of the cooking while we are travelling, at least all the outdoor stuff.  I won't say he's anal, but he does like an organised cooking area. And his 'choofer' is worth its weight in gold.  "note the bicycle chain on the ground - that's to chain it up at night - just in case!


We stayed here for 4 or 5 days in the end and one day we went for a walk and found this little item left by a happy customer.


In case you can't read it the note says "welcome to Pete and Cathy's best camp spot"
The wild life was pretty good here as well. I tried to make friends..


And Dave capture this little guy just above where he was sitting.


It's a Blue Winged Kookaburra, slightly smaller than the laughing Kookaburra and with a different call, but they are just as cheeky.
From here we were making our way generally South and then East towards Karijini National Park.  With more Station stays and free camps, we didn't have much chance to shop so had to resort to making our own morning teas.


Another successful camp oven cake!  Every one is an experiment and we just keep our fingers crossed re hot coals, wind factor, cooking time etc etc.....when it smells like a cake its generally the sign that its cooked.
While at one free camp Dave literally stumbled over this while collecting wood for the fire.


Its a PEBBLE MOUSE nest.  The little hole you can see above the spiky leaves is the entrance to their den and all the pebbles are what they have carted out from their nest.  The whole hillside that we are camped on is rocky terrain and some of their pebble piles are quite large.  We didn't see the mouse at this one but did at another spot...must admit we thought it was just a tall story until we saw the mouse as well.
Another interesting thing we hadn't heard of before was the Aboriginal etchings, On the rocks but etched rather than painted.  These were some we came across on Indee Station.



As well as baking cakes, our diet is not lacking with having to cook outside and just thought I'd give you a sample of a meal cooked on the choofer...


Mmmmmm Steak and Kidney Pie -----Delicious......except for that bug that landed on the carrotts!

Oh well thats outdoor living for you. Gotta get moving now.



Next stop Karijini!

Sunday, 31 July 2016

19. TO BROOME AND CAPE LEVEQUE

One of our favourite trees grows up here in the North so I thought I'd start this Blog with a picture.
A Boab of course.
Quite a few cafe's and roadhouses like to claim they are famous for something. At Roeburne roadhouse, just out to Broome they claim fame for their Home Made Sausage Rolls so we had to try one.
It was definately the biggest sausage roll we have had, and the first time we have ever shared one.
From here we moved on to Broome, and headed for the ocean and the jetty.

But we couldn't walk along the jetty as it was closed for repairs.
From here we checked out the famous Cable beach.

A lot like Surfers Paradise, Sand sea and People!

We set up camp at a farm on the outskirts of Broome and from here had our own road down to Cable Beach.

It was a bit rougher but well worth the effort when we came out here.

All to ourselves, Beautiful smooth white sand, blue sea and clear skies.....this way
and


Rocks and the odd beachcomber the other.
After spending a few days here we decided to head for Cape Leveque. This meant we were back in the dust!
but as it is only dirt for part of the way it also meant stopping to air up for the bitumen.


We arrived at Gambannon and decided to get a few chores done.

Travelling in the red dust means there's always washing to do.
As we were camping on traditional owners land we were lucky enough to have one of the native fish traps just below the camp.

This picture was taken about mid tide. At high tide all the rocks are covered, but at low tide, the locals can just walk down and pick up the fish trapped by the low water level.
We went up to the community at One Arm Point and went out to see the hatchery and its rugged coastline.

And on the way back came across this sign.

I can't quite get my tongue around the traditional words though.
While on Cape Leveque we also visited a Pearl Farm with its technology...old


and new.

Then it was back to camp to enjoy our last Cape Leveque sunset before we head off for more adventures.