Perth to Clare

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August 3rd 2016
Published: August 30th 2016
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Friday 29th July 2016

We managed to get away without too much delay but on stopping in Mundaring, Mark and Helena discovered they had left behind the poles for their annex. Luckily their daughter, Mia, was home and she drove up and delivered them. We sat in the van and had morning coffee in the meantime.

Lunch was in Meckering in the gardens commemorating the earthquake which destroyed the town in 1968. After reading all about the earthquake and Judy and Rags reminiscing of their experiences at that time we continued on our way.

We passed through Cunderdin, Kellerberrin and Merredin, continuing 50kms past Southern Cross to Karalee Rocks. This heritage site consists of a dam of water collected from the Rock using cleverly designed rock walls. This water was used in the days of steam locomotives, which ran between Perth and Kalgoorlie.

Free short term camping is allowed here with flushing toilets available. We have noted this area for a trip in the future as there are lots of marked walking trails.

Saturday 30th July 2016

First stop this morning was Coolgardie where we
Boorabbin MemorialBoorabbin MemorialBoorabbin Memorial

Memorial to 3 truck drivers who died tragically in fires in December, 2007.
explored a little before leaving Mark and Elna to continue to Kalgoorlie , while we drove the more direct route to West Kambalda. They were to meet us at the free camp there after their quick trip into Kalgoorlie, we by-passing it as we have been several times previously and wanting an easy day.

Rags didn’t get much rest that afternoon as the caravan waterpump failed, and he took several hours tracking down and repairing the fault. Not a great start to the trip considering the van is still quite new.

Mark and Elna had a good day in Kalgoorlie, full of facts they related about their day. A bbq dinner was cooked on the town bbq in the children’s playground adjacent to where we camped.

Sunday 31st July 2016

Today we reached the 1000kms mark from home, driving through Norseman where we had morning tea and Balladonia where we saw part of the Skylab space laboratory, which crashed to earth in July, 1979, spreading debris along S.E. of W.A. We finally stopped for the night at Taylor Crossing 100kms west of Caiguna. On this stretch we drove along the longest straight road in Australia of 145.6 kms.

Monday 1st August 2016

On reaching the border at Eucla, we drove towards the coast along a dirt road to view the old, abandoned telegraph station there, as well walked to the beach to see the jetty remains. Mark and Elna were very impressed with this area and we all took lots of photographs.

After the usual photos of the South Australian/West Australian border we drove for some distance into South Australia, spending our first night there in a gravel pit overlooking the coastal cliffs.

Tuesday 2nd August 2016

The highlight of the day, and possibly so far for this part of the trip, was seeing about 10 whales at the Head of the Bight. We were able to view them from the lookout there, probably no more than 200m away. Mothers were feeding the babies and generally just swimming around socializing, but we did see one come up out of the water with about half its body in the air.

We used a caravan park for tonight’s stop, at Penong. Some of Judy’s relatives once lived in this area and she used to go there as a child. Neat little caravan park but we were a little nonplussed to be told that if we were to take on any water it would cost an extra $1. Only place we have ever come across that, would probably be more diplomatic to charge everyone the extra as part of the charge.

Wednesday 3rd August 2016

It was very cold this morning, there was a layer of ice on our windscreen. Right across the road from the caravan park is a new windmill museum. It doesn’t actually open for another month but we were able to walk around and watch some chaps working on it.

It warmed up a little as we drove into the town of Ceduna, where we went through the customary quarantine inspection. From here Rags went to the local hospital to have the stitches in his leg removed (BCC) after which we bought some oysters and mussels from “Baldy” in the LIA.

Mark needed a dentist to repair a loose bridge and it wasn’t until we were some distance out of Ceduna that they found one at Streaky Bay. We continued on to Kimba, as planned, with them intending to catch up soon. The free camp at Kimba was again rather busy. It has toilets and a shower (coin operated) so is great fro travellers.

Thursday 4th August 2016

Iron Knob was our first stop this morning, we diverting to allow Mark and Helena to catch up. We had never stopped at this town on previous journeys. The town itself is in decline, the mine now run from the site itself, not from the town.

The museum was quite interesting and told of the early history dating back to the late 1800s. It was the first iron mine in Australia and it was here that BHP originated. The mine closed in the 1970s, and only relatively recently has reopened under a new company.

Despite several messages and emails to Mark and Helena we had heard nothing so we pushed on to Clare. We reached it in the early afternoon, to find our Queensland friends, David and Helen, already there. David was very helpful helping Rags set up, worried that he didn’t injure himself after the hernia operation he had just over 2 weeks ago.

A message from Mark and Helena advised us they hadn’t reached Kimba yet, were staying there for the night and would catch up in Clare. An enjoyable evening was had with David and Helen.

Additional photos below
Photos: 10, Displayed: 10


Windmill Museum at Penong.Windmill Museum at Penong.
Windmill Museum at Penong.

They are still getting it ready for the opening on September 10, 2016.

20th October 2016

Great memories
Lovely to read this an re-live the trip. Thanks again for introducing us to the only way to really see this marvellous country.

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