July and August are our most favourite months as they are the months our two grandsons were born. We may not get to celebrate with them, but our hearts are there in Wodonga, Victoria every year. One has hit the teenage years, and the other is mid-teens, and both are turning into adorable young men.
August is also a special month because we will find ourselves going to Broome, a town we have not visited for 25 years. It was then, on our honeymoon, did we stay at Cable Beach and enjoy every sightseeing venture available. When we arrive, it will be under slightly different conditions. Travelling on a budget doesn’t allow us the joy of going on the bus, boat, and helicopter trips, but we can still enjoy the other side of it. Seeing Broome itself. We can’t remember it at all because we always travelled via an escort and must have blinked if we did go through the town. Camel rides, cocktails at sunset, fishing trips, going to the pearl farm, indigenous tours, floating up the gorge, plus spending time ‘playing’ back at the resort, took up any time we might have had spare to sightsee the actual town. So, we look forward to getting there.
There are also some changes to our dynamics we must share. As plans can change, so too can your travelling buddies. Due to family issues, Annie has decided to stay in WA and not continue with us. We offered to travel back to Perth, but she was excited to plan her own way back. She has since travelled with camper friends to Kalbari where she has met up with close friends from Perth. We wish her happy travels and hope the trip home is an adventure that she enjoys.
As for us, we had an appointment we were then able to keep and made our way to Broome, a destination of interest and purpose. Due to our spare wheel hanging down too low on the Pajero, we are unable to access the back of the car when hitched. Therefore, getting to our fridge if we must use it, is impossible. So, we ordered the lift kit a few weeks ago and arranged for it to be sent to the nearest dealer, which was Broome. They rang us a week ago and said it was ready and booked us in to fit it and to have a service.
But first, here is some sights we saw and fun we had along the way… Check out Shebbie’s playground!
Karratha was so much more than we expected. With its gorgeous scenery, mines, gas plant and salt mine, it was certainly an adventure of colour and wow moments. We decided to stay a week so Shaun could have some tests, but plans have a way of changing. The town itself was colourful and well planned but unfortunately didn’t have all the necessities we required so had to order urgent items online and wait. So, we spent 4 weeks there, which was a couple of weeks too long. By week one we had seen the gorgeous views of the salt lakes, the gas plant (unfortunately the tours and showroom were closed due to COVID), Dampier and Hearson’s Cove.
In the four weeks, we ended up going to Dampier twice. Once to visit, and the second for a picnic lunch. We drove out to Hearson’s cove three times, once to visit, once to fish and have a picnic, the last to bbq on the beach while watching the stairway to the moon. We went into Karratha shops four times a week to shop or to amuse ourselves, and the only place we didn’t visit was the Millstream National Park because I couldn’t do the windy, bumpy dirt track. My back needed a big rest after the trip through the Pilbara. Some dirt roads had to be taken, and it really knocked the old girl around. Shaun wasn’t much better but is now. The rest did us good, and they say there is a reason for everything, so the delay must have been more about for our health. Some days, neither of us could even be bothered coming out of the van, but that is what happens when you travel with chronic pain. Some days it is bearable, other days when feeling okay we tried to go for as many drives as the budget allowed, but even then it was not enough for others who needed more. So, no hard feelings, our travelling party it now just us again.
With our plans changed as we can now move out of this state and not worrying about getting back in, we are on a bit of a time clock that ticks by very quickly. Cyclone and rains are not that many months away, and if we wish to head off on our planned trip, we must go soon or we will never get to see the NT until next autumn/winter.
Regardless of the interference from others wishing to plan our trip, here are our fun-filled visits to those tourist spots, on our way out of town, that we had always planned to visit.
The first stop started our trip off on a high. Two other vans pulled in with us and offered to take a picture of us. Kind or what? The 150 represents the town being 150 years old in 2016. This town is not without the skeletons in the closet and with that, all I can say is do not take your children to live there.
Small community but worth a look if passing by. Iron ore shipping is found to the left of the town, and driving back through town and out the other side we found Honey Moon Cove, and the reef, further around. The town and the peninsula were named Point Samson in honour of Michael Samson, a member of a prominent WA family, who accompanied the district’s first settler, Mr Walter Padbury, on his journey in 1863. Mr Samson was the second officer of their ship, the ‘Tien Tsin’, and it was during Walter Padbury’s expedition to Nickol Bay, that the town was named. For years the point was misspelled as Sampson and the error was not brought to the government’s attention until 1918, after which both the point and the town site were corrected. To keep reading go to … https://karratha.wa.gov.au/map-listing/point-samson
Around the other side of town we found a spot for morning tea called Honeymoon Cove. Stopped to enjoy a cuppa and snack. It was here we chatted to a local traveller and took some happy snaps before heading out. She shared it was expensive at the caravan park there, that they were packed in like sardines and staff were rude, so well warned if you stay here 🤔😬 After, we took a drive around to Port Samson reef. Very pretty little place
Wickham was constructed in 1970 by Cliffs Robe River Iron Associates. The aim was to create a processing plant for the iron ore mined at Pannawonica, a port at Cape Lambert from which to ship the ore, and a town to house the workers. To continue reading go to https://www.aussietowns.com.au/town/wickham-wa
Cossack, now a ghost town
We stopped here to see the gallery of artwork we had heard about. So, after lunch we enjoyed taking a stroll through the museum. Sorry, we were not allowed to take photo’s as it degrades the paint work as well as copy right laws. We also enjoyed a couple of hours strolling through the town, learning much about the architecture and the people who lived here.
We were told in the 1940’s , Cossack population dwindled after the gold rush slowed, and worsened once thriving pearl industry here was moved to Broome.
The region is apparently subject to violent storms and cyclones and was severely damaged at different times in its history. It left the substantial stone buildings in a state of disrepair. The state government established a survey, in 2007, into the potential for restoration or revitalisation of this remote town. To read more about Cossack go to … https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cossack,_Western_Australia
Peawah Rest Stop
After a long day sightseeing, we drove not too far down the road and stopped at Peawah free overnight stay. With toilets and dump point it was a busy spot and a nice place to put our feet up. The afternoon went by very quickly as we discussed all the great places we had visited and how much we enjoyed them. With steaks on the BBQ, we watched the sun go down and after, headed inside to have dinner and catch a movie.
During breakfast as we watched a flock of birds fly in and out of the trees eating the berries. Entertained us, it did!
Well, we were told the only interesting feature of Port Headland was the Port and they weren’t joking. We went to the park which overlooked the Jetty and saw ships being loade, and after, walked down the main street looking for a coffee shop. Unfortunately, it was all very derelict, sorry, but walked in, smelt the cockroach dropping and the odour of an unclean establishment and walked straight out. We instead drove around to the back of Woolworth’s which had ample parking for trucks and vans and bought fresh sliced meat and rolls.
We did find a nice spot to park. It was a train graveyard but had a sign Port Headland mining museum. I was a bit confused why all the trains had Newman written on them. But wise hubby told me it was because they came from Newman.
However, Port Headland did have one noticeable feature we thought amazing. It was so flat. Like miles before and for a bit after. Not even a mound or tuff of grass in most areas.
De Grey Rest Stop
Big day in Port Headland so drove a little ways out of town to De Grey free overnight stay. Toilets, dump point, flat ground and clean. Was packed but thinned out while we enjoyed an early morning cuppa outside watching the bush come to life. Yep, someone looks a bit worn out. But also excited as the next stop is ocean views.
WOW, JUST WOW! $10.00 a night per person to stay in the most delightful of sites with the most sensational panoramic views. It was a 10k dirt driveway but so worth the painful last leg when it opened up to the ocean surrounding the quaint Cape.
A freshwater tap is available at the rangers station and there are plenty of dump points, dumpers and dump bins.
Here, Shaun went fishing with the neighbours during the day and by night we shared a campfire and stories. We could have stayed so much longer but we were on a mission to get to Broome. The only place we could get a spare tyre lift kit at the time as they are not making them for our model anymore.
But getting off the subject. Cape Keraudren is such a picture, has easy boat ramp access and once the tide goes out, fishing in the gutters was so much fun. We camped on the left side of the Cape (Mosquito Creek). The right side they told us was very windy. Thankfully we didn’t have any wind, it was a perfect three days stay.
80 Mile Beach
Another dirt driveway! ‘OMG better be worth it,’ I say to hubby as we drive along the dusty unsealed driveway. ‘Why can’t they seal these roads?’
We arrived late morning to find they were having a market commencing at 2 pm. Hubby and I smile, ‘well that was worth the trip’. So, it was a quick shower, leisurely lunch, and off to the market. We were not prepared so just popped our books on a camp table and set up our Gazebo for some shade and had some fun with the campers. There was music, atmosphere and lots of chatter. Sold half our stock so we were pleased we made the effort. Couldn’t see the beach from the campground as it was the other side of the dunes, but we did have some fun driving on the beach and having dinner that night.
Lovely spot if you enjoy driving on the beach and watching magical sunsets and fishing… chuckle. Like we all do! But it was a bit pricey for our budget even after selecting an unpowered site for #35.00 a night. So two nights were enough.
Sandfire Petrol Station
Last stop for Petrol before Broome, so they say, but we did find another about 40k’s before town. Just thought I’d mention in case you forget to fill up here. Also, had to take these pictures of the peacocks just meandering around without a care in the world.
Goldwire Rest Stop
We rested for the night at the free 24 hr Goldwire rest stop. It was clean and had all the usual facilities. Packed when we arrived but still managed to get our van in next to a nice couple who were travelling the opposite way.
Next stop was to Broome so we were a bit excited.
Well travelling buddies, we made it to Broome safe and sound, found a reasonably priced caravan park so we can leave Star, and have already started to explore. So, hope you have enjoyed our trip so far and can continue on this journey with us. Wish I could have put more videos up but made them to long for this site. Note to self, stop waffling and just get on with filming. <Chuckle>