Jun 29, 2013

Ningaloo and Home - June 2013

For all the years that we have been going to Ningaloo, 2013 would rate as our most disappointing weather & fish wise. The wind did not appear to ease up though when we think back it wasn't windy all the time, more a routine of windy days, still evenings or windy nights and still mornings. Which is all fine but then we had to contend with the swell and tide changes which didn't cause any hassles like it did many camping down on the 'flats' we had the sand dune offer us some protection from the high tide's.

Base Camp

Unsettled Weather
We took the opportunity to go into Exmouth for a day out where i bought a submersible RULE water pump to enable us to pump out water into the bladder, like all luck we have the pump only lasted twice before calling it quits,taking it back for exchange is less than easy as it has to be delivered to the supplier in Welshpool, another hassle for the consumer! A bigger surprise for us was to come back to camp only to find a dying goat in our annexe! A Message? at least it wasn't in our bed ... Unfortunately there was nothing we could do for it and as i was about to mercifully put it to sleep it died on it's own which was best for all.

Unexpected surprise coming home, Poor Goat
Fishing was almost non existant, even our efforts at beach fishing at night was dismal compared to years past. I did manage to catch or should i say it caught me, a rather large Tawny Shark of around 3mt's long, it took some effort to finally get it onto the beach where we took some photo's on Dave's camera and then dragged it back into the water and watched it swim away. Tawny Sharks are not classed as aggressive, they are a member of the Wobbegong species and though they are common to inshore reef's it was the first time i had seen, let alone caught one. Tick off Another box ....

Tawny Shark, Released to swim away

Elizabeth and Anne's Camp

Days turned into weeks and we filled our time with reading, Kayaking when we could and driving through the dunes and fossicking along the beaches. One day we offered to guide friends Elizabeth & Anne and Brett & Doreen through some of the rarely used tracks past the old Norwegian Bay Whaling Station, along with Dave and Joanne we all had a great time, It was surprising to us to find out that many of the campers have not actually explored the area, there is so much to see even if it is only sand and beaches. Before we knew it we were heading into our last week's stay and the weather forecast was not looking good, with rain predicted to be in the region of 50 - 120mm we decided to pull up camp a few days early and with Dave and Jo joining us we decided to make our way home via Moora and New Norcia, taking an extra few days.

In all it took us 4 nights to get home, It's a relaxing drive with less traffic, though some of the hills had Dave's non-turbo diesel cruiser working hard. We have stayed at New Norcia opposite the Monastry 4 or 5 times now, it makes for a good overnight stay, they are now charging $7 per night which doesn't break the bank, it does make us think though when we go and spend $40 - 50 dollars over at the Monastery shop it would be nice to be acknowledged and perhaps get to camp for free.

Elizabeth and Anne coming up the soft steep hill in their 200 series

Brett, attempt # 2 which he made. Dave didn't and had to take the back track
Dave using the back track

Nearly there Brett
Four of us

Early Campers? remains
An Old Boiler, turned into a road roller?
Each year the ruins become more wasted
A Local
Now we are home, the weather has been sunny days and cold nights. Not a problem as it gives us the days to catch up on the cleaning and sorting out what we need to take for the next part of our journey. We expect to only be home a fortnight, long enough to house sit for Frapper and Curls when they are away. Where to next for us? No idea really, we had thought of heading back North and catch up with our mates Geoff and Vickie for a bit of gold prospecting,but they have committed to work for another couple of months. We may take the Great Central Road across to Alice and then make our way up to Queensland for a month or so until it's time for us to attend the 10th Annual Bushtracker Muster in Alice Springs. We honestly don't have any plans, nor want them as they only get changed anyway. I just hope whatever we do it doesn't involve Hospitals and late night drives.

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