W.A. – We’ve Arrived!!!!
Sunday 16th June
After Ron had made sure we had no fresh fruit, vegetables, plants, seeds, honey, or indeed cane toads, we set off towards the WA border. They are really strict on quarantine there.
The scenery was again absolutely beautiful.
We arrived at the quarantine checkpoint and decided to stop at the toilets first. As I was getting out of Indie, I thought I would just check the fridge and lo and behold – a rogue mandarin was lurking in the crisper. Well I’m sure that would have proved a jailable offence so we ate it on the spot.
We then proceeded through the checkpoint where a quarantine officer boarded Indie and checked the fridge and let us pass. Phew!!!!
The whole experience must have caused me to become over excited because I failed to get any photographic record of the border crossing!!!!
We drove on through and again, the scenery defies description. I know I sound like an old broken record but there simply are not enough wows to describe this country!!!!
Around every bend, there was just breathtaking vista after vista.
Then we had our first glimpse of Lake Argyle
Lake Argyle was formed by the damming of the Ord River and it is huge.
When we arrived, we checked into Lake Argyle Resort ($37.00) and headed straight for the pool. It is an infinity pool overlooking the lake.
The water was absolutely freezing, so much so that poor Ronnie ended up with three Adam’s Apples!!!!! Truly we only lasted a few minutes before we had to get out. Bear in mind though, it is almost the middle of winter!!!!!
Afterwards, we were sitting outside Indie when Teri and John (from last night) walked past.
They were going for a walk down to the dam wall. Ron didn’t want to go because a walk down immediately intimated a walk back up again so I went.
We walked down the road.
It is an earth wall dam and the road goes across and doubles back to a lovely picnic area.
We saw a sea plane land and take off again.
Afterwards, we went back to the park and the four of us had sundowners (it was only 3 o’clock but who cares?) in the beer garden listening to a young man playing guitar. We were the audience in its entirety!
He was very good and picked our age group perfectly and played lots of our songs. He was doing really well until he mucked up the middle verses of ‘Waltzing Matilda’. John said it was OK because they were English and didn’t know the difference!
Finally we went our separate ways and Ronnie and I wandered up to the top of the park to watch the changing colours of the rocks in the setting sun. The little sea plane took off again, this time straight towards us.
The colours were truly spectacular. This is what it is all about!
Ronnie cooked up a lovely bar-b-que dinner and we splashed out and bought hot chips to go with it…..a lovely end to a lovely day!
Monday 17th June
We left Lake Argyle and drove down the road where I had walked yesterday with John and Teri.
We drove across the dam wall. As well as irrigation, they use the dam to produce a little bit of hydroelectricity.
We drove around to the little picnic area as well. It was gorgeous with its great looming cliffs.
As we were leaving, we suddenly realised we had stolen away without any word of farewell to our friends John and Teri. Big apologies! We must have been a bit over excited about going to Kununurra.
I don’t know why, it was not that interesting. It is just another town, absolutely packed to the gunnels with caravaners, 4 wheel drivers, motor homers and sundry other tourists. We have established that The Kimberley and Bungle Bungle areas of W.A. are designed specifically for 4 wheel drive and fly overs only. And they do not come cheap!!!!
We shopped at Coles and because the area is renowned for its Boab trees, I went in search of a silver charm. They had heaps but as they ranged from $95.00 upwards. They are still in the shop and I just took photos of real ones. I am absolutely besotted with them!!!
We stayed the night at (651) Cockburn Rest Area. It is on the junction of Victoria Highway and Great Northern Highway, which is where we will turn to go towards Halls Creek. Nothing much happened at Cockburn. We didn’t speak to anyone much. Ron put up the awning and as I went round the back of Indie, I smacked my forehead into the corner of the boot lid. I said ‘Oh dash darn’ (or words to that effect) and promptly burst into tears. Boy did it hurt! And I got a big egg!
Tuesday 18th June
We left early this morning and drove to (643) Spring Creek. The scenery is still much the same. Lots of Boabs!
We arrived around lunch time and set up camp. It is almost directly across the road from the Bungle Bungle park entrance so there are lots of caravans without their accompanying 4 wheel drives. I guess they are all off on day trips! We have a very intermittent phone and internet service so I have spent all day getting my diary and attempting to get my blog done. Not having much joy!!!!
We had a call from Paul. He received his Birthday package and was quite pleased but he said it made him feel a bit homesick for the first time ever.
We have had a quiet time here. We haven’t seen anybody really all day. The most interesting thing so far has been the toilets….sad isn’t it?
The toilet is made from a solid concrete collar above a pit. Flash hey!!!
Towards sundown we wandered down to the creek. It looks nicer in the dying light of the photo than it did in real life. It was quite stagnant with lots of biting things flying about.
We said g’day to a few people and decided that the toilets were still the most interesting things there!
That night I got my shoulder and back pains back with a vengeance. Is it punishment for saying mean things?
Wednesday 19th June
We left camp and drove 7 kms down the road to (642) Leycesters Rest. It looked like a nicer spot and we drove around and had a good look.
The bridge had been blocked off with a great boulder with the words ‘cross and die’ painted on it and there was a dead bat hanging on the fence. Now we can take a hint so we continued on our way
We drove through from there to Halls Creek.
Now there’s an interesting town. They certainly tell it how it is in their signage!
By now, I was in dire need of a fizzy drink so we ventured into the butcher shop and there was a fellow in front of us at the counter. The butcher was wandering around and we waited ages. Finally we started to walk out and so did the other customer. He wasn’t being served either! We walked to the bakery next and they had five counter staff and no body served us there either! We finally gave up and went to IGA.
We then went to the Information Centre with its statue honouring the early pioneers, to find out which was the best caravan park but since there was only one, it was it!
While we were there, Ronnie spotted a gorgeous little silver Boab charm (only $23.00) so he bought it for me.
We stayed the night at Halls Creek Caravan Park ($35.00)
Thursday 20th June
I’m still in a fair bit of pain but we are moving on to (636) Mary Pool.
It is gorgeous. We arrived about 11.00 am and went for a bit of a walk about.
We met a fellow called ‘Tanks’ who contributes to a lot to different forums that Ron reads on the net so we had a bit of a chat to him. He has been travelling for a fair while and was going to catch up with some other forumites up the road.
I was still feeling crook, so I took to my bed.
Ronnie decided to try his hand at baking scones.
We had already met our neighbours, Colleen and Rex. They are from Toowoomba and have been on the road for several months with their gorgeous pussy cat, Angel (who judging by the look on the face wanted to be back indoors).
We had had a great old chat with them and invited them over for sundowners.
I was sound asleep, blissfully unaware of anything around me when Ron came in and woke me to tell me John and Teri had arrived and managed to jag a spot right next to us. Talk about timing, Ron was just finishing off his scones. We had just begun our afternoon tea in earnest when Don and Pauline (from near Lake Macquarie and who we had met at Lake Argyle) rocked over and so they were invited back for sundowners as well.
We had quite a little party going and it was lovely sitting outside chatting and drinking.
Friday 21st June
We have decided to stay on for another day but our neighbours have all left us. Colleen called by and gave me a novel she had finished with and ‘Tanks’ also dropped by and gave us another 4 novels he had finished with too. People are so generous.
Ron has gone into a baking frenzy after the successful reception of his scones. He was not best pleased with them because they hadn’t risen to the occasion so to speak. I think he is being a bit harsh on himself because it is not the best oven in the world and besides, we all thought they were fabulous!
Anyway he has now produced a mouth-watering pile of pikelets for our morning tea.
They were delicious!!!!!
I set about scouring the camp ground for folk who looked like they would be nice to talk to when I came upon Sue and Tom who coincidentally were camped next door. Sue looked like a Hippy Chick so I knew she was good value!
It turned out, Sue is an artist who works mainly with clay but also with textiles.
We invited them over for sun downers and we all had the most wonderful time. They come from Narrogin. The only other place I have heard of in W.A. is Pingelly (a little dot on the map where my friend Ros comes from). Turns out, Narrogin is a little dot on the map about 50 kms south of Pingelly. Who’d a thunk it, in the whole state the size of W.A.? Sadly, they are travelling in the opposite direction to us.
Saturday 22nd June
Sue and Tom called by to say good bye this morning and Sue gave me some white roving and silk to do some felting which was so lovely.
With fond farewells said, we headed off through yet more stunning country side towards Fitzroy Crossing and our reunion with Bob and Fran.