Gascoyne to the Gulf

With all aspects of ourselves, equipment, and belongings freshly laundered, we headed north toward Exmouth and Cape Range National Park. I described Cape Range as “my favourite place in the world” to a man who said, “The world? The world is a big place.” Awkward silence as the gravity of that statement lingered in the air.

Roadtrip

The road to Exmouth is paved with Wedge-tailed eagles snacking on deceased kangaroos, and roadhouses selling diesel at $1.90/litre and outrageously priced dim sims (according to RollinRob57 on Wikicamps).

But we only had eyes for the Minilya Roadhouse and its homemade sausage rolls. Talk of these sausage rolls began 250km before touchdown, so by the time we got there we were ready to eat every one they had. They sell around 60 per day and, it turns out, sell out by 11am. I must have looked suitably distraught as the lovely woman behind the counter fossicked in the freezer and nuked the last two in the building.

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Oily homemade sauso roll goodness

We decided to make Giralia Station on the Exmouth Gulf our interim stop for a couple of days. Checking in and grabbing the required portable loo at the homestead we drove an hour into one of the beach camp sites. Essentially 4WD, it was slow, but roads like this tend to mean awesome sites are vacant on a drop-in basis.

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We set up and the loo looked incomplete. It had been strapped to the trailer with the lid opening to the front, so, fed up with its role in life we surmised it had flown off. Waz drove back in the dark, happily engaging the extra LED lights (that came with the UHF radio, snorkel and other ‘necessities’). The forlorn lid was exactly where it had made a bid for freedom, an hour away at the gate to the homestead.

Roadtrip

Meanwhile, back at base, I kept noticing specks of dirt appearing on my legs and arms that stung. I blamed the wind.

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Waiting for Return of the Lid

Overnight, the black specks turned out to be microscopic midges that had bitten me on every exposed piece of skin. How something around 1mm in size can deliver such irritation defies logic. I couldn’t even run into the ocean for relief thanks to the ever present shark risk so I could only gaze out at the pods of dolphins chasing fish with ferocity, and lean into the wind thankful that midges appear to dislike wind as much as I.

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More hunt than gather

The calm dawn inspired Waz to get the rod out and a while later returned with his catch; a small green turtle.  To the collective trauma of Waz, myself and the turtle, she had inadvertently swum past the lure and hooked her shoulder. Do not despair! The lure was swiftly removed and as Waz carried the heavy wee turtle back to the water, she flapped her fins like she was swimming and took off without pause. Waz added fishing pliers to the list of things this Off Road Life required.

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Although this beach was populated by five couples widely ranging age and origin, we were all very similar. Which explains why we were all headed to the same bay next.

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Looking like we had a communicable disease and a nervous tick, we set the GPS for Exmouth and Cape Range National Park. We swung by the homestead to sign out, along with an earthy looking departing visitor (ignoring WA gun laws) who enquired as to where there may be goats he could shoot. “Side of the road anywhere?”.

What’s on the menu @WOKA* ?

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Two minute organic eggs, levitating on a bed of soft herbs, wild pig, foraged fungi, and heirloom tomatoes

*Waz’s Outback Kitchen Australia

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Thorny Devil (Moloch horridus), Giralia Station.  This little character is around 10cm long.


13 Comments on “Gascoyne to the Gulf”

  1. Awesome post of your adventure….loved it.

  2. Nick DC says:

    Hey guys, finally got a chance to catch up on all your blogs. Awesome stuff Nina. Somehow you manage to make Waz look good (well sometimes anyway) 🙂
    Seriously though miss you in the office mate but i can see that you are not missing being there! Keep living the dream.

  3. Grahame says:

    Hi guys. Great to see you having so much fun. I am envious. I loved your friendly Devil. Must be amazing to encounter the likes of this and the turtles. It looks like Waz is in his element. Hey and the shot of the tree is impressive. We quite like an interesting looking tree. Did yo manage to watch the big race somewhere?
    Jannine & Gra

    • Nina Williams says:

      Thanks so much Jannine & Gra, I feel so lucky to be out there. We did actually watch the great race from the grandstand!

  4. Kristina M Holdaway says:

    I take it you are giving the Spring Carnival a miss this year! Love the photos.

    • Nina Williams says:

      Hi Kristina! Thanks, it’s great to be out doing landscapes, I really miss it! We managed to actually schedule in Spring Carnival – that took a whole extra suitcase of stuff that we will never wear again on this trip!

  5. Davo says:

    I’m surprised Wazza didn’t want to have a crack at Turtle Soup! Loving the blog. Are you heading up the coast next or Karijini way?

  6. Sara says:

    Looks like you guys are having a great time. I am enjoying the posts and photos.

    • Nina Williams says:

      Thanks Sara! Now I’ve got a few scheduled things done and a bit of work finished, I’ll be back into the swing – I’ve a lot to catch up on!

  7. Carol Williams says:

    Your blogs are such a great read and the pics absolutely sensational!!! This is definitely your thing! Love it!


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