DIARY/PHOTO JOURNAL - Page 28
Week 34 - November 05, 2018 - November 11, 2018
Entering into our final travel week with Cinderoo, we found ourselves reflective and somewhat sad. We were completing an amazing journey and although we had anticipated the end, we were already missing our traveling campanion. But, travelling to and around Esperance lightened our hearts as we passed one stunning beach and bay after another.
One beautiful beach after another
And another, and another
We stayed the night in Esperance and reconnected with Rex and Debra and enjoyed a BBQ together. Much of the talk was about the Melbourne Cup, a horse race that is not just any horse race, but a national 'everything stops' to watch race. The next day we left Esperance and made sure we were in a town around race time so we could watch this important race. We found a pub that was televising the race and we cheered on the horses along with dozens of our new best friends.
Gerson displaying his wares Watching the Melbourne Cup with all walks of life
Entrance to Albany Harbor Have to watch out for those sneaky Bandicoots and those vicious Turtles crossing the roads
More flowers Middleton beach was solitude defined
We continued west into Albany and Denmark and found ourselves really liking the area. Lots of rolling hills and of course, stunning beaches, not to mention an awesome blowhole that had my hair standing on end. We also stopped in at Mount Clarence and the Albany Heritage Park which had a display of WWII weapons and radar equipment.
Coming into Albany Having fun with the guns
Peekaboo Skink Enjoyed the history talk with the volunteer Radar turret
WWI Anzac (Australia-New Zealand Army Corps) memorial View to Albany Harbor area
Pine tree grown from cones recovered from enemy trenches So many beautiful and weird flowers
Albany still has it old world charm architecture
Just more unusual flowers
About the blowhole as it is not your typical water spout. Due to the shifting of the rock bed and its diagonal uplift, gaps formed between the layers and thus when an ocean wave slams against the lower edge of the rock ledge, the water forces the air between the layers and the air escapes up above with a force that can knock you over. Not knowing what to expect, I stood right in front of the opening and whoosh! The air rushed right up my torso and made my hair (and my shirt) defy gravity. We sure did have fun with this and boy, did we laugh!
Near the blowhole Blowhole vent My hair-raising blowhole experience
We also made it across the peninsula and visited another unique natural wonder called "the Gap". Standing on a cantilevered platform, you are witness to the ocean rage into the gorge and batter itself against the rock walls with quite a deafening sound. And, just around the corner from the Gap is a huge natural stone bridge that took all of our self-restraint to abide by the signs that said to not climb on the bridge.
The Gap The stone bridge Size perspective - Gerson is on the lower walkway (in blue)
We found one of our favorite breweries - Boston Brewery Cannot get over how many different flowers
Gorgeous Peaceful Bay Sunset seen through different lens
We had a stop to take a treetop walk in the Valley of the Giants. The old-growth forest is a preserved grove of Tingle trees that reminded us of our California Sequoia trees. We walked along the 40 meter (120') high walkways and enjoyed seeing the trees from this different perspective.
Quite formidable trees Enjoyable in many ways
Views from the walkways Controlled burn Mighty Red Tingle Tree
We made a quick stop to enjoy a waterfall walk at Beedelup National Park and then on to our camp for the night at Hamelin Bay, known for its nice beach and fabulous sunsets.
Nice view to the ocean Beedelup Falls
Sunset walk along Hamelin Bay Cinderoo tucked in the trees
Next, we were off to visit the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse and where the Indian Ocean meets the Southern Ocean. Again, such beautiful coastline and we were even shown where a rock formation is supposedly directly over Washington DC (if you dug straight down). We did not verify that information, but it was fun to imagine.
Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse Where the Indian Ocean meets the Southern Ocean
Allegedly, directly under that rock, on the other side of the world, is Washington DC
And, not being ones to pass up a chance to walk in caves and see extraordinary rock formations, we stopped off at the Jewel Cave. The Jewel Cave was fascinating and it has thousands of hemotites, a rare formation that is built
Tasmanian Tiger skeleton found in the cave One of the longest straw stalactites in the world at almost 6 meters
Down we go into the crystal falls Tree root alongside a stalagmite Beautiful Bacon formations
Wondrous formations and tight squeezes
Unique and rare helicitites (these grow sideways)
And still more different flowers
Our next stop was a place we
had been looking forward to seeing for a long time. The Margaret River
region is known for its surfing and its wines and although we did not surf, we
certainly enjoyed the wine.
Coming into the Margaret River region Around Margaret River
Surfing at Margaret River's mouth Cinderoo just hanging out
We had an enjoyable wine tour Just when I thought I had seen all the flowers....
And then...we found ourselves on our last travelling day with Cinderoo. Our last campsite, our last drive along the coast, our last hurrah with Cinderoo. Although, at the beginning of our adventure, we took a few days around Bunbury to test Cinderoo, we marked our official launch from Stuart and Jane's house. We passed through Bunbury with a nod to the fact that we had completed our circuit; however, we celebrated the official finish when we arrived at their home.
Our last campsite Bunbury marked a full circle The official complete driveabout around Australia
Many magnets, many memories
We pulled into Stuart and Jane's driveway and they were there to welcome and congratulate us. It was a befitting end as Stuart and Jane launched us on our adventure and they were there to embrace our return. We cannot thank them enough for all the help, support and encouragement and I feel fortunate to have them as family and as friends.
Whereas this marked the end of a magnificent journey around Australia, we still have a few weeks left to ready Cinderoo for her next campanions and see a bit more of the area around Perth before we head home. We're not done yet!
Home Page Diary Page 27 Diary Page 29 Diary Index