Flipped a coin…heads we go North

29 12 2009

Dec 16 – Perth to Denham – 826 Kms
Left Perth early after saying our goodbyes and packing up Coco. The drive was hot and terribly boring and we arrived at Seaside Caravan Park in what looked like a cyclone. The wind was stong and the sky was grey, so we put our mattresses in the back of the car and went to bed.

Dec 17  – Denham, World Heritage Drive, Monkey Mia
We were told that it would only be nice weather for half the day so we opted to do the World Heritage Drive. We saw the Stromatolites in the Hamelin pool, which are basically living rocks that are 3 billion years old, though not the most exciting attraction. Next we stopped at Shell Beach which is made up of a zillion tiny coquel shells, we ate our breakfast on the beach and took photos of the shovel nose rays in the shallow water. Eagle Bluff was the next stop with a cool cliff lookout and you could see sharks swimming down below. Little Lagoon is where we stopped for a swim as it turned out to be quite a hot day and finally settled into our caravan park in Monkey Mia. The beach there was beautiful and we hung out at the camp with the local Emu.

Dec 18 – Monkey Mia and Carnarvon
We got up early at 7:00 to see the dolphins feeding at the beach. I guess they come out from the wild everyday and get fed. There was a one week old baby dolphin so we weren’t allowed into the water but Jeff got chosen to feed the dolphin which wasn’t fair. After the dolphins we were to head to Carnarvon, but on the way back to the highway we blew a tire and had to stop in the fly infested side of the road and put on the spare tire.  Once we got to Carnarvon we got  ourselves a new tire, and I picked up a new snorkel mask on the way.

Dec 19 – Coral Bay
Today we were really excited to get to the Ningaloo Reef that we had a tiny breakfast and left. We booked into the park at Coral Bay for 2 nights and grabbed our snorkel gear. The camp site was crappy with no shade and pretty much a parking lot, but the snorkelling was amazing. There are tons of coral and colorful fish of all sizes. The beach was Paradise Beach, and it totally deserves to be called that. We went fishing in the evening off the rocks near the jetty, but no luck

Dec 20- Coral Bay
We pretty much swam, sunbathed and snorkelled all day. We bought an underwater camera and took some photos. We fished after lunch but still nothing. Our neighbours at the camp 2 young guys from Mauritius and a hippie family from Scotland offered to share the fish they had caught on the boat that day. We even tried “carpaccio” which is raw fish which sits in lemon juice and “cooks”. We hung out and listened to their fishing stories until the ranger told us “lights out”.

Dec 21 – Exmouth and Cape Range National Park (Lakeside Camp)
We decided to bypass Exmouth and stay in the “free” parking in the National Park. First we stocked up on the essentials in town, SPF 30, Zinc, water, ice, bait, fly nets, insect repellant and non perishable food and set off to some bush camping for a few days. There was only 7 campsites and an outhouse. The wind had picked up and there wasn’t much to do so we tried fishing again, still nothing and wandered the beach in search of something cool.

Dec 22 – Cape Range National Park (Lakeside Camp)
Snorkelled some more Ningaloo, saw a shark and suntanned. When it came time to go fishing we were pretty tired of failing. I was using a shitty 20$ fishing rod and I thought I was caught on the coral or something but then realized I had hooked onto a huge Spangled Emperor. Our first legal catch, at 46 cm, dinner. We asked our neighbour for a gutting lesson and had a feast for dinner. We also bathed in a bucket of soapy water before bed, oh life in the bush is so GLAM!

Dec 23 – Cape Range National Park (T-BONE camp)
We were planning to drive south to Yardie Creek but none of the campsites were shaded except the one right next to Lakeside, called T-Bone.  After dinner we went down to the Jurabi Turtle Centre to see the Loggerhead Turtles nesting, they come out with the stars and moonlight to dig nests and lay eggs in the sand. It was quite a sight and the turtles are HUGE.

Dec 24 – Cape Range National Park (T-BONE camp)
The first morning we woke up and there was NO wind, so we headed to Turquoise Bay for a drift snorkel and some more pictures, since the water was finally calm. I saw a HUGE reef shark while snorkelling and refused to get back in the water. Jeff convinced me to get back in and so we finished the drift, almost missed the spot where you are supposed to get out of the water and the current almost sucked us out to sea, but we swam for our lives and we made it fine.  We drove to Exmouth to have showers at the visitor center and get some stuff for Christmas.  Upon return we had a Kiwi couple ask if they could pitch a tent in our camp spot, we agreed, and hung out with them for the evening and decorated the Christmas tree.

Dec 25 – Christmas in the bush – Cape Range National Park (T-BONE camp)
Santa didn’t forget about us, there were a few gifts for us to open, some eggnog with breakfast and mac and cheese breakfast (what a treat).  Spent the entire day with our Kiwi friends trying to catch some Christmas dinner. They caught 2 descent sized ones, we contributed a smoke ham and potatoes and we had a huge feast.

Dec 26 – Exmouth to Perth (almost)
We called our folks to say Merry Christmas and then drove all day from 11:00 am to 9:00 pm and were just short of Perth by 190 kms. Crashed in a roadside rest stop.

Posted By Eva – per journal

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One response

1 01 2010
Chris & Brenda

Happy New Year!

We are following your adventure, thanks for sharing. Coco looks great, brings back memories of our blue whale, ’67 Pontiac station wagon that got us through Chris’ school years.

Best wishes,
Love
Chris & Brenda

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