Our 2nd night on the road was spent at Buntine Rocks, a camp spot in the bush 18klms NW of Wubin. The bush flys were in their thousands and very friendly, our fly nets came in very handy.
We were on the road around 8.30am the next morning and heading North on the Wubin / Mullewa road, I had the GPS waypoint for Wilroy Nature Reserve programmed in to the GPS and it lead us up the path again, approximately 3klms before the camp area the GPS directed us to turn right off the road and turn onto a dirt track, immediately it then directed us left down another narrow track. We followed the track for 3klms not being too concerned as the moving maps showed that we were on the correct track and heading in the right direction, - it was just that we were driving alongside the bitumen road we turned off from .. sure as eggs we arrived at our camp for the night only to be confronted by large rocks stopping our access, the camp was only accessible from the main road! So on we went another klm before we could turn around and finally pull into a recently upgraded road side camp. So recently upgraded the grader marks & tracks were clearly visible.
Our afternoon was spent either chatting or reading & listening to the local radio 666, that broadcast lots of good music. Kimbo and i were sitting under his awning when we spotted a dog wandering through the bush, oh no i thought – In our travels we always seem to come across lost or abandonded dogs and i didn’t want this one to add to the collection, i was hoping it would spot us and take off but of course it did the opposite and came over tail wagging, just then Vickie came out of the van and i knew we were in trouble.
A bowl of water was consumed and then some cut up chicken, How Good Is This the dog must have thought, it was a nice looking Kelpie with a chain for a collar and a couple of cattle ear tags and we figured that it had wandered off from a local property. I tried calling on the UHF but didn’t get an answer, we decided to drop it off in Mullewa the next morning but when we awoke it had gone, perhaps it was just a local dog that got what it wanted and went back home to sleep.
Fuel consumption with the V8 Toyota Ute has been very good considering the weight of it and the Van, it is easily under the 20lt per 100klm figure and a few times it has averaged in the 17lt / 100. Kimbo’s 200 series hasn’t been too much different but the manual V8 certainly has it over the more powerful twin turbo auto in overall figures.
We called in and visited mates Geoff & Vickie at Geraldton, we have known them for 30 years and way back then went camping with them when we both owned VW Kombi’s. They now own a 20’ Bushtracker and last time we caught up with them was at Gregory River in the NT when they were heading back West after taking delivery of the van. It was lovely to catch up again and introduce them to Kimbo & Ned, their is a very good chance we will meet again in SA where we will both be in September.
With our due arrival date at Ningaloo still four days away we decided to head to New Beach / Bush Bay 30klms south of Carnarvon, a 12 klm drive in on a corrugated track and a T junction decision by Vickie and we turned left to go to New Beach. The area had recently received rain but nothing to be concerned about and we soon found ourselves camped just metres from the Ocean edge, the flys were not as bad and we had a lovely evening by the kimble fire counting satellites – before the rain started.
We listened to the rain pelting down for most of the night knowing that the track out would be a challenge, up early we left and with the track already cut up and slippery we came across a ‘Wicked’ Van that had left the track and was firmly bogged in the bush, they were very lucky not to have rolled it. This was something we didn’t need but could not ignore them so i drove forward and un-hitched the van and turned around to winch them out. I soon had them back on the road and with instructions to them from Kimbo to drive slower they were on their way. I hitched the van back up and continued on, i was very glad i had the mud tyres on the Ute as we were able to get reasonable traction and maintain control. Watching Kimbo in front slipping and sliding reminded me of our time at Cobold Gorge in 2007. The ‘Wicked’ Van was having a difficult time being two wheel drive and tyres plugged with mud, at one stage two of the guys jumped out and had to help push the van up an incline, once moving the van didn’t stop and they were left running after it.
Back on the highway it was pleasing to have it still raining as it helped wash off a lot of the mud under the rig’s, on the 30klm drive into Carnarvon the highway was flooded in sections, another good opportunity for an underbody wash. Apparently the area had around 45mm of rain overnight, not a lot compared to say Qld but the area had already been flooded a few weeks back and didn’t take much to re-flood. The Shell Servo was closed due to the past floods and i think also the BP was closed also. We refilled at the Caltex at the junction and they were doing a lot of business.
Re-stock with provisions in town and it was on our way, i had decided to try and call the Ningaloo Homestead and see if we could come in a few days early, even though i had phone signal the calls failed so on we went eventually stopping for a night at Lyndon River rest area on the Exmouth / Minilya road. A quite afternoon before being joined by ½ a dozen WhizBang’s, they were ok though no noise apart from the sound of the door’s Whiz – Banging each time they were opened or closed.
Next day it was a short drive into Coral Bay, visit the Bakery and made a call to Phil at Ningaloo who said ‘No worries, Come on In’ and we did. Being 3 days early we were not expection to get onto our pre-booked site but luck was on our side with the previous campers leaving as we arrived. So now two nights after being at Paradise we have our camp set up, it is windy but not horribly so. No Kayak or boat action yet though, we have been happy to just sit and relax and watch the ocean. Phone signal is good in the car but Internet signal is low so unsure when i will be able to update the blog. Jo & Dave should arrive today, we are looking forward to that.