Looking back, it’s difficult to believe we entered Western Australia in early November (2015).
Fourteen stops, a little over 16 weeks, and almost 7,000 kilometres later (4,349.1 miles) Dean and I have a new appreciation for the enormity of the largest, and possibly, the most diverse state in this big beautiful country of ours, and as we would discover, at this time of the year, the hottest.
What fun we had as we walked along beaches of white sand so fine it squeaks beneath our feet, been dwarfed by trees of unimaginable splendour, beauty – and size, and sweltered through some of the hottest temperatures either of us have ever experienced, all the while loving living, and laughing all the way.
To cut a rather long story short, I couldn’t resist the urge to provide you with a (quick) recap of our amazing WA adventure.
Soon enough we were in Esperance, and then another slice of heaven, the Cape Le Grand National Park. We loved all the other places we visited in the Great Southern and South West Regions – Albany, Denmark, and Augusta.
Dean broke is favourite surf board on a monster wave while Surfing Margaret River and I (honestly) think he’s still pining over the loss. We ventured into the caves beneath the Leeuwin Naturaliste karst region and marvelled at limestone formations.
We walked amid the giants of the Tingle and Karri forests, and I hope I’ll always remember how majestic they are. I fell in love with the Karri Trees so much that when my dear friend Denise paid a visit, I was thrilled to go Back into the Southern Forests and show them to her.
We found it hard to comprehend the weather being cold enough to wear a jumper in the first week of summer and yet soon enough we were off the road and sweltering at Rockingham while house sitting for a lovely couple who went touring through Europe. As much as they were glad to arrive home after five weeks, we were equally as glad to get back on the road.
It is hard to believe that was only six weeks ago. Dean and I have covered a lot of ground since leaving Perth behind. From Cervantes, we followed the coastline north and stayed at every place we’d ever heard about – Kalbarri, Denham, Carnarvon, and Coral Bay.
From the tranquil waters of Turquoise Bay, our travels seemed to fly by with vast distances between stops but not before we experienced 45°C (113°F) near Fortescue. Thank goodness we were only passing through on our way to Karratha before enjoying a couple of days at Eighty Mile Beach.
We then entered the Kimberley Region and stayed put in Broome for eight days waiting for a full Moon (that was sadly obscured by clouds), and for new car tyres to arrive from Perth. Leaving Broome and travelling east, we stayed overnight in the middle of Nowhere before then driving through gorgeous country and finally relaxing on the shores of Lake Argyle more than 1,000 kilometres inland (621.6 miles).
It’s been an adventure and a half. We’ve fought the flies at every turn and, during the last half of our stay, the heat at every corner. We’ve relished temperatures below 35°C (95°F), avoided devastating bushfires, and spent many nights patiently waiting and watching as the sun disappeared over the Indian Ocean.
We’ve shared pristine beaches with each other and no-one else, seen lots of wildlife, both in and out of the water, and gazed upon incredible natural wonders. We’ve taken so many photos at times it’s been difficult for me to filter through them to select just a few to share.
Travelling through WA in the ‘off season’ isn’t so bad, providing you can tolerate the heat. At times we’ve been the only caravan staying in a park and the only vehicle on the road, hour after hour. At times we’ve felt like the only people on the planet. Luckily for us, the wet season – the off season – has been relatively dry and the roads have remained opened. Sure many attractions have been closed, many tours not operating, but we’ve been ok with that.
Luckily there has been enough rain that we’ve been able to witness a deep lush green blanketing the north-western parts of our wide brown land. We feel very lucky indeed.