Well, we have made the trip across the Gibb River Road and now camping at Quondong Point, about 50 km north of Broome.
Before leaving Kununarra, did I mention that we visited the Hoochery Rum Distillery? From the photo you can see Hels was getting into the rum tasting….. lots of samples!! Wanted to start with the Chocolate & Coffee, but managed to convince her to start with the straight blends first. We did however come away with a bottle of the Chocolate & Coffee liqueur!
|Rum tasting ..... hic, hic|
Anyway enough of that......
Day 13 - Wednesday 15th August we set off to cross the Gibb River Road. Had heard varying reports on the road condition but you have to go and have a look for yourself. The first section was quite corrugated and stony however stopped at the Penticost River for coffee and reduced the tyre pressure for a better ride and better for the tyres. After lunch stopped for scones at Ellenbrae Station (on recommendation), and must say they were great – freshly baked huge scones served with jam and whipped cream! We decided to stay the night in the "Ringers" camp which was a nice spot, gathered some wood for a camp fire and kept warm during the chilly night.
|Scones at Ellenbrae|
The next day we crossed the Hann River, which would have been a great spot to camp but too early to stop so continued to Mt Barnett Roadhouse. Made the decision not to stay and see Manning Gorge as would have to camp the night and walk in the morning. Next stop was Galvins Gorge which I walked as Hels heels are still tender. Drove to Adcock River where we found a quiet little side track which opened into a small camping spot next to the river. Managed to get plenty of wood so again had a great campfire and a bush shower to freshen up.
|Hels keeping warm at Adcock River Camp|
Friday morning drove into Adcock Gorge where the walk to the Gorge was quite easy so Hels could walk in with thongs. We could remember walking into this Gorge on previous trips, water was tempting for a swim but a bit too early as the sun had not warmed the water up enough for us! Drove onto Imintji Store were we had the BEST cappuccino on the Gibb. Set off and drove into Bells Gorge via Silent Grove which was the most corrugated section of road we had come across - was so bad that at times could not seem to get above 20 km/h. Hels had decided that the boots had to have another run so with heels bandaged and boots on we walked into Bells Gorge and climbed up and down rocks to get to the bottom pool for a swim. The reward for the rough climb was fantastic – water was refreshing to say the least. We decided not to stop and camp at Silent Grove as I wanted to get the corrugations behind us, so back on the Gibb and headed west looking for a suitable camp. As we travelled west thinking how great the road was after the Bells road and how lucky we had been not to get a flat, we rounded a corner to find 2 women in a hire FWD flag us down. They had put a stone through the tyre and could not figure out how to change the wheel. They had no water, only one spare tyre and were heading into Derby another 200 km. We changed the tyre and sent them on their way. We travelled on and found a great camp spot next to Dog Chain Creek, a little close to the road but the creek was OK to swim in which I did to freshen up from the day’s adventure – even had a quick dip in the morning which was a bit chilly but got the heart pumping!.
|This may not look great but Imintji ..... GREAT cappuccino|
|Hels checks out the local resident before jumping in for a swim|
|Resident at Bells Gorge|
Next day we called into Leonard Gorge thinking we would drive the short track to the top and just look down which was what we did on our last trip. However things had changed and we had to drive 7 km into a car park and then walk 3 km return. As Hels heels had been irritated from yesterdays walk, I set off to find the gorge and after a 25 min brisk walk in I arrived at the gorge. Was more spectacular than before as this time the falls and the chasm could be seen from a different direction and the additional walk was worth the effort. Unlike our previous trip you could not climb down rocks to swim in the Gorge but was more than happy with just the view. Hels stayed in the car and entertained herself looking at rocks with binoculars and having to resort to reading the bird book! From here we drove into Derby and had a lovely lunch at the Warf. Was great to put the corrugations behind us even though I thought most of the Gibb was OK and we had been travelling between 70 & 80 km/h, it seemed to be the side tracks that were worst. After lunch checked out the Boab prison tree which has been fenced off for ‘sacred site’ reasons and we had a laugh because last time we actually stuck the kids in the prison tree to see how it felt and threatened to leave them there if they misbehaved!!!. Stayed at Willare Roadhouse for the night which was a welcome sight as we camped on green lawn, had showers and flushing toilets - what luxury!!
|Leonards Gorge - early morning|
After 4 days on the Gibb headed into Broome for fuel and supplies then headed 50 km north to Quondong Point. Wasn't sure what to expect but the first sight of the sea with the vivid blue was great. As we drove along the ridge which over looked the sea we could not believe the number of caravans camping here. This made it tricky to find a spot, however as we drove slightly south of the entrance road we came across a little secluded spot between the dunes which lead straight onto the beach. This is a free camping area with no facilities but with a million dollar view which also included watching a couple of whales jumping out of the water and splashing down on their backs. Just makes you realise just how lucky we are!
From here we will head into Broome for a week of luxury including hot showers and flushing toilets!
|Our first veiw of the sea at Quondong Point|
|Waiting for that western sunset|
|Our $1m camp site - Quondong Pt|
|Some of the large rocks hidden beneath the 8 meter tides|