Sunday, October 5, 2014


 Well we have made it home. The end of another great trip doing some of the iconic parts of Australia such as crossing the Nullarbor, Kalgoorlie, Margaret River and Esperance to name a few. As usual the trip lived up to our expectations and it was a wonderful experience. Once you get over the road trains passing you for the first time the journey takes on a different perspective. I must say I found the truckies we came across very professional. I have included a few shots of some of the highlights. There is a bit of a consensus between us that there are a few places we really want to go back to, Pemberton, Albany and Bremer Bay to name a few. We travelled around 8500kms and our average fuel consumption was 15.5 lts per 100 kms. We are pretty happy with the tow tug and the van with only a few small hiccups. It was a genuine experience travelling across the Nullarbor and helps you understand just how hard these people do it in our remote areas, Consider this that between Norseman and Ceduna there is no real towns, that’s approx. 1200kms. Sort of puts things in perspective a little bit. We come across a young couple at Eucla whose vehicle had broken down and had at least a 7 hour wait for a town truck.  I keep saying how lucky we are to be able to do this with great friends and wonderful people and especially with Di in the co-pilots seat. Oh well back to work for now. D & D

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Road home the end of another trip

Over the next 5 days we will retrace our steps across the Nullarbor back to Bendigo. Our first hop is Balladonia to Eucla. We spend 2 nights in Eucla mainly to have a bit of a rest and to try and find the ruins of the old telegraph station. The ruins disappear on a regular basis, covered by huge sand dunes only to be uncovered again over time. We found them, only partially covered and found them interesting.  
Old Wharf Great Australian Bight Eucla

Old Telegraph Station ruins Eucla

Old Telegraph Station ruins Eucla

Old Telegraph Station ruins Eucla

The workmanship required to build these structures which remain standing in the most adverse conditions was remarkable. From the ruins we found a track which wound its way over the sand dunes and on to the beach. The water was crystal clear and pretty much untouched. We did find the remnants of an old jetty but information about it was scarse. From here we took another track out on to the flats between the sea and the Eucla cliffs. It was pretty short but again we found things that throw up a lot of questions but not many answers.
We left Eucla early because we knew 10 km down the road we would lose 1.5 hours because of the time zones and pointed our noses to Ceduna, a 500km drive. Not much to say about this leg just a lot of retraced kilometres. We did stop at Nullarbor and Nundroo both of which featured in the out bound leg. Ceduna seems like a nice place and at the moment there is an oyster festival happening so sites at caravan parks are at a premium. 
Ceduna Peir

The first place we went to was full so we ended up at the Big 4. A bit of a surprise I must say. Very friendly people and at $27 one of the cheapest parks we have come across. Worth considering if you come this way.

Another reasonable start to another day and we have fell into a bit of a rhythm with the set up and pack up. Di looks after the inside of the van, I do the outside and Wendy pretty much packs the Oztent on her own. So it takes about half an hour and we are ready to roll. So we were ready to leave Ceduna for Port Augusta by 8.30. Around 480 kms today with morning tea at a town called Poochera (which is famous for dinosaur ants). It’s pretty small place and not much there but the toilets are clean and it has a really nice area (by Nullarbor standards) to pull off for a break. Found a quondong tree with fruit and a tree covered in yellow lady bugs. Morning tea over, we headed east again and stopped for lunch at Kimba. 
Lady Birds doing what nature does

Giant Gala - Where's Dougal

On our way over we stopped here looking for the big gala and never found it (and before you open your mouth no it was not me they were looking for), disconcerting given it is 9 meters tall. However, we managed to find him this time and whilst he is in need of some TLC he still stands in all his glory. We had a bit of lunch here and were entertained for a little while by his real life cousin, who could utter a few words and almost had a conversation lined up. Back on the road and the last leg for today into Port Augusta. From here Gaz and Chaz head for Adelaide and we are heading for Renmark. It seems we have been over this leg many times so this will probably be the last post for this trip. So if anyone has actually been reading this blog I hope you got some enjoyment or even a laugh from it. We are well into planning for our next trip but more on that later.

Day 35 Esperance - Right turn Eyre Highway

Well it was an early and complicated start to the day. Laura had to be out at the Esperance “international” airport for a flight back to Perth then on to Melbourne. The flight left at 9.50 but our hosts at the park required us to be out of the park by 10.00 which meant that Gaz and Shaz had to pack up, lug the van out to the airport then return back to town before we proceeded to retrace their trip to head out to Norseman. You would think that an extra hour on the van site would not make a hell of a difference. 

Looking over plateau Eucla Pass

Road trains Eyre Highway

Maybe they had to mow the sand who knows just know it was a mite inconvenient for our fellow travellers. We finally left Esperance around 11 for the approx. 400km drive to Balladonia, which is our first leg on the return home. I wish I had stayed in bed, I don’t know why but our trip has been plagued with some of the most mongrel weather we have had on our travels and today was no exception. For the first 200 km to Norseman the wind was either head on or on the front quarter. According to weatherzone it was 50kph gusting 75kph. In all honestly I think the car and caravan performed admirably in the conditions but it was a tough drive. At Norseman we did a Right turn on to the Eyre highway heading east for the Nullarbor. So now we have a tail wind or on the back quarter which helped the fuel economy but still was not an easy drive. As you can imagine we pulled into Balladonia with a sigh of relief, short lived as the wind had turned the place into a dust bowl. It was ugly so we basically hibernated. The weather is supposed to moderate overnight we can only hope. No Pictures today