Our First International Trip and a Trippy Pink Lake
Saturday 24th August
Today we travelled to the Principality of Hutt River. Hutt River is an Independent Sovereign State having seceded from Australia on Twenty First Day of April 1970.
Leonard Casley seceded because of unfair Wheat Quotas imposed by WA government. When they then threatened resumption of the Casley’s lands, Leonard went to the Governor and stated that land resumption was unlawful and was there any reason why he should not secede the lands to protect their lawful rights. He did not get a reply so he issued Secession Documents.
Hutt River Province was now a Republic but the Commonwealth Government got involved. The P.M. Billy McMahon offered Commonwealth powers to the state to deal with Leonard. Leonard went to his people and said that if the Republic was a Principality the British Laws of Treason would protect them and put a heavy onus on McMahon. They voted in favour.
Later, when Malcolm Fraser was P.M., Leonard actually declared War on Australia. Three days later he sent notice declaring that State of War had now ceased and under the Laws of War, sovereignty goes immediately to the Government that is undefeated.
He further gave notice that the Principality accepted and applied the Geneva Conventions of 12th August 1949. In doing this he undertook a Political Duty and if anyone hinders or obstructs him in his duty, they are guilty of an offence under the Australian Crime Act.
He is now Prince Leonard of the Principality of Hutt.
When we arrived, he greeted us personally and showed us around. It was my first time being presented to Royalty
Prince Leonard was rather informally attired (but it was Saturday!).
I was a little put out since I had gone to the trouble of wearing lippy especially for the occasion!!!!!!
He obviously saves his flash gear for more regal occasions!
He did, however, issue our visas personally.
We went for a wander around.
We went to the Administration Building containing the Government Offices and the Post Office (where we were issued our visas), the arcade housing the Memorabilia Dept., the Information Bay with the carved wooden bust of Prince Leonard and two metal sculptured knights and the Crystal Monument.
Our final stop was the Inter-Denominational Chapel.
At the front, facing the congregation it had two chairs; one for Prince Leonard and one for Princess Shirley (who sadly passed away just recently).
Ron immediately fell into character, and it appeared the mantle of office was weighing heavily upon him.
I on the other hand, as Paul would have it, am purely ornamental and therefore fulfilled my role most regally.
It was a most fascinating place. I’m surprised there is not more publicity for it. Ron chanced upon a mention of it on a map and when we interrogated the lady at the Kalbarri Info Centre, she produced a brochure from under the counter and told us about it. It does also have camping available (very basic) for $5.00 per person.
From here, it was off to the trippy pink lake.
It is called Hutt Lagoon and is a salt lake which is pink because it contains carotenoid-producing algae which is a source of B-carotene, a food colouring agent and source of vitamin A. (That is so boring……I prefer to think it is magic!!!!)
The pink colour is as it was today. It has NOT been Photoshopped!!!!!!
It is amazing!!!! It is different shades at different depths and there are flashes of blue when it is choppy. It is like pink musk sticks where it is really shallow.
It is quite close to Port Gregory and we drove round for a quick look.
It is a pretty little spot with a lovely white sandy beachfront.
From there, it was off to the nearby Convict Ruins.
There were lots of old buildings in various states of disrepair. There was also a lot of interesting written information about the area.
Then we headed off to Northampton and booked into Northampton Caravan Park ($28.00 per night).
Sunday 25th August
We arose this morning to grey skies, thunder and spits of rain. We decided to head off anyway because there wasn’t that much to see and do in Northampton on a Sunday and our next stop was (436) Coronation Beach. How appropriate in light of our recent hob knobbing with Princes and all!!!!!
Well the rains worsened! Mustn’t grumble though; it is our first real rain in WA!
It was eventually so heavy that we missed the turn off to Coronation Beach, travelled several kilometres down the road and took our lives in our hands negotiating a particularly tricky three point turn across the highway (Indie actually stalled on the second point) only to be confronted by this sign when we finally got back to the turnoff!
Undaunted, we drove into the beach anyway. The colour of the water was not at its usual best turquoise (in fact it was quite a dull grey) but the sun did appear to be making an effort to break through. Lulled into this false sense of security (and the fact that a couple of people had obviously just vacated) we decided to stay the night. ($6.00 per person – bargain!)
We parked Indie and settled in, as did the rain.
It wasn’t all grey skies and pouring rain; there was the occasional patch of blue sky and sunshine.
You could tell it would be lovely in fine weather. We did a bit of a walk between downpours but mainly just hid out in Indie hoping that we would not be blown away.
We spent the night hoping the road out would not be too boggy and that we would manage to get out and head for Geraldton tomorrow.