Friday 5 October 2012

Day 68 5th October Nyngan to Sydney

DAY 68

5th October
Nyngan to Sydney

A very sad day today we are returning to the big smoke which we love to escape from.
Not a lot of new things to see on the way as we have been to these places before.
Drove through Dubbo to Wellington, found a lovely old fashioned bakery and bought lunch and morning tea for $10 pretty good deal! Had morning tea at a skate park and one of the locals showed us his skills on his bike!!
Continued on through Orange and Bathurst, Nev got breathalised (10.30am so he was pretty safe)  there are cops everywhere because the Bathurst Races are on. Drove straight through Bathurst busy but not too bad.
Stopped at Zig Zag Railway and had our lunch. It is closed now but still everything is left there.
Down The Bells Line Of Road through Richmond and Windsor to home.
A very strange feeling - a big house with heaps of room will take some getting use to again.
The end of a fantastic trip, we have seen so many different landscapes, met so many different people and watched all sorts of animals in their natural environment. Back to reality now!
Hope you all enjoyed my first effort at blog!

Thursday 4 October 2012

Day 67 4th October Broken Hill to Nyngan

DAY 67

4th October
Broken Hill to Nyngan

Met up with Wendy,Paul ,Peter and Robyn at Broken Hill last night. they are staying 2 nights as they only got in late yesterday and Paul is having car trouble and has it booked in today. Said goodbye to them again!!
We are just heading back to Sydney now seems a bit of a let down after all the exciting places we have been. Want to get as far as we can so set off towards Cobar. Not much to see on the way now. Had lunch at Cobar and decided to go a bit further so we stopped at Nyngan for the night. Great camp ground on the banks of hte Bogan River very pretty.

Town centre of Nyngan

Our campsite at Nyngan

Day 66 3rd October Yunta to Broken Hill

DAY 66

3rd October
Yunta to Broken Hill

Arrived at Broken Hill about 9.30am so went to info centre and decided to look around. Went to the lookout and Memorial for the mines. This gave us a good view over the town and the Memorial had everyone's names who had died in the mines from the 1800s to present day why they died and their age. Very interesting reasons that changed over the years. Lots of lead poisoning in the early days. We found a huge seat and Nev told me to wait for the bus!!!!

Nev told me to catch the bus back!!!!!!
We visited Jack Absolom Gallery and old Jack 85years was there. Next we went to Pro Hart Gallery. Both were very interesting.

One of the Rolls Royces painted by Pro hart
We then drove out to Silverton an old deserted mining town the original settlement before Broken Hill. This has been the site for many movies eg Mad Max and Priscilla The old pub was intereting had a drink there and read all the memoribillia about the stars.

Drove out to Mundi Mundi Lookout where you can see so far that you can actually see the curvature of the earth.
At sunset we went to the Living Desert Sculptures, they are large sandstone rocks carved by diferent artists from around the world.

                                                                Desert Sculptures

Tuesday 2 October 2012

DAY 65 2nd October Baird Bay to Yunta

DAY 65

2nd October
Baird Bay to Yunta

We have a lot of kms to cover today so not much sightseeing. Stopped at Murphy’s Haystacks on the way to the main highway this morning. Amazing huge granite rocks sticking up in the middle of the farmers sheep paddocks, remnants of an ancient ocean apparently.

Murphy's Haystacks
Hit the Flinders Highway for a while then turned east to cross over to the Eyre Highway now it feels like we are on our way home sadly! Followed the Eyre Highway to Port Augusta where we had lunch on the river bank. Drove through Orroroo and saw the big galah he was huge. Passed through the Flinders Ranges via Horrocks Pass, first time we have any type of decent hills and bends for the whole time.
Stopped just outside Peterborough to see a 500 year old red gum tree.  An enormous old tree and still looks healthy. Peterborough looked like a very nice town.

Can You Spot Kerry near the tree???

 In hindsight we should have stayed there tonight.

On we went another 85kms to Yunta. Stayed by the railway line in the park with a couple of oldies. Only 2 24 hour truckie roadhouses here. Paid $4 for a shower at the roadhouse and looking forward to getting to Broken Hill early tomorrow.

Day 64 1st October Streaky Bay to Baird Bay

DAY 64

1st October
Streaky Bay to Baird Bay

Not a long way to travel today so cooked brekky and headed off to do some loops around the area. First Cape Bauer loop. Saw Cape Bauer, Whistling Rocks, Blowholes and Hallys Beach. The coastline varied in every stop some spectacular scenery.

Cape Bauer

We have seen dozens of little lizards on and crossing the road I think it is their mating season. Some don’t make it across the road unfortunately, Nev has been dodging them all morning so decided to befriend one!!

Nev and his friend
Next we did Westall Way Loop past Taylors Beach, High Cliff, Point Westall, Granites and Smooth Pool. Great scenery and a very blue ocean to look at.

                                                     The Granites and our truck on the beach

We drove down to Sceale Bay for lunch and had a great table looking straight out over the water, very nice.
                                                         Our lunch table - Paradise
Drove a bit further around one side of Baird Bay to Point Labatt where there is a sea lion colony. From the lookout you can see dozens of sea lions some mothers and young suckling and others frolicking and others lazing in the sun. Amazing to see so many in their natural environment.

                                                        Sea Lion mothers and babies

Drove around Baird Bay to the tiny township to camp the night. $10 honesty box to camp with an awesome view of the bay. Walked along the beach, scared the pelicans and saw lots of crab claws that the birds must have eaten the crabs.  4 other couples are here a bit windy and cold but very quiet!

Day 63 30th September Koonalda to Streaky Bay

DAY 63

30th September

 Koonalda to Streaky Bay

Had a quick look around the homestead before leaving. It was operating until 1988 on the old Eyre Highway. The house and shearers quarters were made from old sleepers. It has a new roof to make it safe but inside is as they left it. There were lots of old car bodies that hadn’t made it across the Nullabor from old Dodge utes to Morris Minors all sorts of vehicles left in the yard.
Konalda Shearers quarters
 We headed out past some more sink holes and caves passed Nullabor Roadhouse and stopped at some cliff lookouts on the way to Head of The Bight.
First look at the Bight


What a magic place we saw at least 24 Southern right whales only metres from the shore. There is a board walk to the cliff edges and down close to the water, this is a nursery area for mothers and their babies. We saw 12 pairs nursing and playing so close you could hear them and see their eyes. There were plenty of others further out too. The most at one time has been 127 whales in that area. It was fantastic definitely a highlight of the trip.
3 mothers and their babies frolicking just off shore
Continued on to Ceduna were we had to surrender our last bit of fruit and vegies. Ceduna was having their Oyster festival and a huge group of bikies had arrived so the Police were following them everywhere. We just stopped for a quick lunch and then on to Streaky Bay. Called in to see a model of a huge Great White shark caught here weighing over 1500kgs caught on 25kg line.
We booked in to the only van park and parked facing the bay, fantastic spot could have even had a fire on the beach if we had some wood. Went for a walk along the foreshore and jetty and had dinner overlooking  the sunset and water. Another terrific day!!!
Nev at our campsite
A life size model of a great white caught near here

Sunday 30 September 2012

Day 62 29th September Cocklebiddy to Konalda

DAY 62

 29th September

Cocklebiddy to Konalda (Nullabor)

Very cold night on the Nullabor Plain so didn’t hang around in the morning. Headed off to find Cocklebiddy Caves. These are the caves under the Nullabor that go for 6.3km and divers swim through them. We have seen them on TV. Well were we lucky a group of 4 young guys arrived and were going to dive the cave. They had all their gear stowed down the entrance yesterday ready for the days dive. One was filming and had a torch/camera set up on his head, one was from the US and the others had done it before were supporting his dive to get him to the end of cave. They had dry suits and scooters to get them to the end otherwise a very long swim. Great to see them entering down their ladder and disappearing into the darkness. The water in there is crystal clear but it is pitch black. NOT FOR ME!!!

To light the way in cave 

The cave was huge

We then found a smaller cave in Nuytsland Nature Reserve a few kms down the road. They are everywhere on the Nullabor and there are sink holes in the ground all along the way.
Passed through the roadhouse of Madura down the Madura Pass on to the Roe Tablelands then through  Mundrabilla, Eucla and Border  Village. That is all that is on the Nullabor. Eucla has an old Telegraph Station that is almost buried by sand now. One of the first telegraph stations around. Eucla is also on the coast at the beginning of Great Australian Bite.

          Firstview of Great Australian Bight
Stopped at a few lookouts on the way to our campsite at Konalda Homestead. We had to find the unsigned turnoff and then 14kms to homestead. It was pretty late so will look around tomorrow but looks like it was just abandoned plenty to check out in the morning, no one else here!