We may have spent the night in Western Australia, or we may have spent the night still in Northern Territory. I like to believe that we were still in NT, saves the excitement of a new state for a new day. The skies are starting to be moon-free in the early evening, so we can see all the wonderful stars in the skies. But, eventually that big ol’ moon pokes his head up over the horizon and ruins everything. I still can’t believe how bright a full moon can be – clearly seeing shadows when walking around at night time still amazes me. I don’t know why I hadn’t really noticed before this trip, I guess I’m a city boy.
The first challenge of the day was getting through the quarantine checkpoint at the border. We camped next door to the checkpoint, and I was personally amazed that it was operating 24 hour. The others that we have seen in different places have been regular office hours only… Also, these guys were serious! They wanted to confiscate ALL fruit and vegetables (they let us peel our potatoes and cut the head off the carrots and keep them). They also took our damn honey… They had a fire burning all night with all the confiscated food. I wish I had of known they’d take my honey, I’d have binged on it for breakfast… I also bet that the supermarket in Kununurra does pretty well for itself with travellers restocking on fresh produce… (Oh, and in case you are wondering what that photo is about, I thought we’d spell out WA with our bodies – not a complete failure, but not as cool as it was in my head at 6AM this morning)
We didn’t stop in Kununurra, or make the detour to Lake Argyle, though I’m starting to wish that we had. Instead, we made a rather large detour to Wyndham, and Risa was seriously wondering why we did! I heard there was some giant crocodile, a giant boab tree that had been converted to a prison (I remember hearing about that in primary school) and a lookout to some rivers that converge on a giant flood plain. The giant crocodile was just that, a 20m long fibreglass crocodile…
The lookout was rather spectacular. From the top you could see five giant rivers converging to the Timor Sea (King, Ord, Pentecost, Durack and Forrest River) . The flood plains were immense, looking more like dry lakes than riverbanks. Sadly the skies were hazy with smoke from small bush fires, but we certainly got the idea of the scale of the area. Yup, just like yesterday, Big.
Wyndham town itself was pretty run down, though they were proud of their ‘Tidy Town Entrant’ in 2008, as there were signs all over town. They did have a super cheap outdoor cinema though – $2 to see War Z!
The prison tree was a further 30km out of town. We were hot (no air conditioning) and Risa was starting to lose interest, so we headed back to join the highway south.
It wasn’t a total waste of time though, the drive there was phenomenal – I spent half of the time looking at stunning mountain ranges (the other half I spent looking at the road, which was just enough). At first this whole area felt very similar to the McDonnell Ranges near Alice Springs. My memory of them is a little hazy, so I can’t fairly judge the two. They’re both amazing, so it’s really win-win.
There were even more amazing mountain ranges as we headed further south towards Purnululu National Park (The Bungle Bungles). My personal favourite was one with a giant rock standing on the summit – which I later guessed from looking at a map that it’s called Pompeys Pillar. Sadly though, they say it’s a two-hour rough 4WD only drive from the highway to the visitor centre, and as it was about an hour before sunset, we found the nearest rest stop (just near the turn off) and will hit it fresh tomorrow morning. It sounds like it’s going to be an interesting drive, with five creek crossings, the deepest of which is 400mm (which we know is a piece of cake in Deli-chan!).
７4日目 ７月２６日 (金) 移動日 その２ 西へ！！！！
今日もほぼ移動日。 とはいいつつメインのヴィクトリア ハイウェイから５０kmほど寄り道をしてWyndhamという街へ行ってみることに。
私たちは、じゃがいもと、人参があったのですが、じゃがいもは皮につくジャガイモ特有の病気が広がるのを防ぐ為と、皮を剥けば持ち込みOKとのこと。 人参は、頭の部分を切り落とせばOKらしい。 スイートポテトもあったのだけど、これには病気はないらしく持ち込みOK
途中キャラバンパークでシャワーを浴びて（＄３）、すっきりした後さらに１時間ほど進み、今日はViolet Valley という場所の近くのレストエリアでキャンプです。 今日も星空がとってもきれい〜 おやすみなさい！！