WA2021

Travel

WA2021: Reflections

Cooper Creek

With just over a week since we returned from our three month trip, I now have a chance to look back on our adventure and to share some of my reflections with you. It is a strange feeling being back to a normal routine (well, as normal as Covid permits) and certainly not easy to settle down.

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WA2021: Back Home

Sand dunes on the road to Fowlers Bay

Three months to the day when we left on our adventure we returned back home on Friday. We had planned to take two days to drive between Adelaide, where we stayed with friends, Jill and Ross, and home. However, due to the lockdown we could not stay in Victoria and decided to make the journey in one day. It so happened that this coincided with a band of heavy rain moving from the west the east and, as a result our windscreen wipers were on for the whole drive. In a way, the weather reflected our mood of returning to increasing Covid cases and a lockdown. However, we still visited some interesting places on our way to Adelaide.

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WA2021: Rock Country

Can you guess what this is? Read on to find out!

Wednesday 25 August

During the past few days, we have covered a fair bit of ground that has included a recommendation from Narelle who we met at Milligan Island, to visit ‘Rock Country’ (as she calls it). This has taken us to many interesting places where we have learned a lot about all sorts of stuff. I am therefore dedicating this post to the rocks, rather than our itinerary.

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WA2021: Jurien Bay

Sunrise over Lipfert Island on our second morning at Milligan Island Campground

Our last stop before heading inland on the road back to Victoria has been Milligan Island campground, just north of Jurien Bay. We planned to stay two nights but have ended up making it three – perhaps because we are putting off the change in direction from south to east and back home. The news about the number of Covid cases in Victoria is not great, neither is the restrictions that we face when we get back (having had total freedom here in WA).

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WA2021: Kalbarri and Geraldton

The Pink Lake – yes it really is that colour!

Tuesday 17 August

It seems like I have so much to report since my last post – we have been to Kalbarri and Geraldton and a few other places in between. We have now landed in a Council bushcamp, which fortunately has Optus service. This is a really quiet and tranquil spot, but you will have to wait for my next post to read all about it. In the meantime, there was so much of interest around the Kalbarri and Geraldton areas. However, our visit to Geraldton was marred by some very disappointing news.

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WA2021: Shark Bay

Dirk Hartog Island – Office, café and bay

Thursday 12 August

After a very easy 200 km drive, we arrived in Denham for a late lunch, which turned out to be later than we had hoped, as you will find out below. Denham is located on the shores of Shark Bay, almost, but not quite the most westerly point of mainland Australia and we are were there for four nights and have now (Thursday 12/08) landed in a free camp next to the Murchison River (inland from Kalbarri).

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WA2021: Ningaloo

Yardie Creek Sand Bar

Our four days and five nights at Yardie Homestead seemed to disappear quite quickly, particularly as we are now coming up to our second and last night at Wooramel River Retreat. Yardie Homestead is located on the west side of the North West Cape, the side of the cape that features Ningaloo Reef. When we booked this campground, we could not get a site five nights in a row, so we booked three nights at and unpowered site and two nights at a powered site. We tried to change this when we arrive, but it was not possible – as it happens this was a good thing.

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WA2021: Dampier

The North West Shelf Gas Project on the Burrup Peninsula

Our five nights in Karijini sadly came to an end too quickly and we were on our way back to the coast, heading for Dampier. The drive took us to Tom Price (strange name for a town) and along the access road to Rio Tinto’s railway. This required us to sit through a 20 minute safety video in order to get a permit to use this road – we were expecting something a bit different!!

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WA2021: Karijini National Park

Sunrise over Karijini National park

I had heard so many great things about Karajini National Park from various people that I was looking forward to experiencing it first hand. We had purposefully booked five nights in Dales Campground to give us time to visit as many gorges as possible. After our two nights in a motel at Port Hedland, it was back to camping. It also meant that temperatures were about 10 degrees lower. Yet again our stay here was a mixed experience that almost ended in a less than happy outcome.

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WA2021: Port Hedland

Eighty Mile Beach (my feet got wet taking this one, but the water was so warm)

Mention Port Hedland to anyone and their immediate thought would be iron ore and/or salt. Surrounded by numerous mineral mines and salt pans, Port Hedland is WA’s main port for exporting both. It is also probably not the most likely place for tourists to visit. However, I was interested in seeing the ‘other side’ of WA before heading inland to Karijini.

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