Travelling Australia
Wayne & Pam BENTLEY

Friday 28th July 2006 to Monday 31 July 2006

Friday 28th July 2006

The Great Cliffs of the Great Australian Bight

The Great Cliffs of the Great Australian Bight
The Great Cliffs of the Great Australian Bight
Cliffs of the Great Australian Bight

This morning we woke to a pretty strong wind blowing to the east and it had quite a chill factor to it as well. We organized ourselves fairly quickly and were on our way out of the caravan park by 8:00am with only another 13 kilometres to travel in Western Australia. We passed through the border about 10 minutes later and put our clocks forward 45 minutes for the second time on this journey.

We were then traveling along fairly close to the cliffs and past some look out parking areas where the cliffs can be observed close up. Having previously stopped at all of these lookouts, we continued about 40 km before stopping for the first time to view the cliffs.

Our next stop was about another 40 km where we pulled in to another lookout that shows the height of the cliffs and the vast expanse of the ocean to the south.

From here it was on about another 46km to the last of the lookouts, and also the most spectacular of the views from the cliff line. This is a spectacular sight and each of the three visits to this location have left us feeling we have been privileged to be able to visit places such as this.

After this, it was back on the road again for some more serious driving to reach our intended destination of Ceduna. With the strong following wind we found ourselves cruising (or should that be 'Patroling' along at about 100 km an hour with the motor just ticking over at 2150 revs per minute and the fuel gauge only moving quite slowly. We continued past Nullabor Roadhouse and Station Homestead, then Yalata and Nundroo before we pulled in to Penong to top up the diesel tanks of the Patrol. Having traveled just over 500 km since filling up at Mundrabilla in WA, we took on 91 litres of fuel (at 142.9 cpl the same as in Kalamunda), equating to just on 5.25 kilometres per litre of fuel.

When filling up with fuel in Penong, I was very happy to be filling the Patrol, as opposed to the truck beside me who just topped up his fuel tanks on one side with 335 litres of diesel. The Service Station manager stated that that was quite small, as he has had trucks take on 1200 litres in one fill.

From here it was just a short 87 km on to Ceduna where we booked in to the Foreshore Caravan Park for the next two nights. This should give us a chance to catch up with a few of those tasks that get left behind whilst we spend all day driving.

Tomorrow in another day, but not one that we have to get too active really early in the morning.

Parked at the cliffs of the Great Australian Bight

Saturday 29th July 2006

Today was a rest day and we were up at about 6:50am and ready to get into the days activities. Sounds good, but that was 6:50am Western Australia time, it was actually 8:20am South Australian time, and the days activities were relaxing, working on updating some items that had not been completed before departure from Kalamunda, relaxing, eating and waiting for beer O'Clock.

We did take a walk up the street to check out the local shopping and to have a look at the foreshore etc. Although the back of the caravan is only about fifty metres form the shore, however there is a 2 metre cyclone fence around the caravan park. We figure it must be to keep us in as they lock it later at night, or maybe it is to keep some of the local inhabitants out after they have enjoyed a cask or two in the evenings.

Last night we were required to stroll up to to local bottle shop when 'One of Us' discovered she was getting a bit short of white wine. (The Nullabor was fairly hot & dry!) As we were at the bottle shop the 'Other One' also purchased a cast of red wine and we then discovered each person can only purchase one cask of wine per day and that can only be done after 4pm.

At about 2:00pm we enjoyed a breakfast (maybe lunch or afternoon tea) of bacon, eggs, Tomato and onions and toast . This was all prepared on our BBQ whilst looking out over the ocean. Life is pretty tough. The rest of the day was spent organising the printer driver for the Canon S920 printer we carry with us and sorting out our Satellite TV dish after Optus finally re registered our Optus card after making changes to eliminate pirate copies from working.

There were several other things that we intended to do, but you can't rush them....

As it is now 5:30pm, it is past Beer O'Clock, and time to publish the web site and fill the glasses at the end of another day.

Tomorrow we will be on the road again and heading further east, maybe as far as Peterborough where we intend to spend another couple of nights.

Ceduna Main Street
The Main Street in Ceduna

Ceduna Foreshore
The Ceduna foreshore - behind the caravan

Sunday 30th July 2006

Back on the road this morning, leaving a rather cool Ceduna at 8:01am and heading out the Eyre Highway with a final destination of Peterborough in mind.

This journey doesn't happen to be too scenic for the first part, but at least there were a few towns to pass through. The first one we came to was Wirrulla, followed by Cungena then Poochera, which is where we rejoined the highway last year when we crossed to the east coast in March. We continued through Condada, Minnipa, Poldinna, Yaninee, Wudinna, Kyancutta and Koongawa before driving around the township and stopping in Kimba where 'One of Us' thought she was talking to the 'Other One', then realised it was just a big galah instead.

After a photograph or two we 'hit the road' again and made our way past Iron Knob before stopping in Port Augusta long enough to refuel the patrol. From here we headed south for a few kilometres before turning east again and heading up the pass through the Flinders Ranges. This was a bit of a haul for the patrol, but the scenery through the ranges was well worth the effort to get to the top.

Once through the pass, we continued through Willowie, Morchard and Orroroo before arriving st Peterborough at about 3:45pm.

We drove straight to the caravan park and set up for the next two or three nights as there appears to be a good number of sights to see in and around the town. All in readiness for Beer O'Clock and a good night relaxing after 604 kilometres on the road during the day.

Kimder - Half way accross Australia
Kimber - Half way accross Australia

The Flinders Ranges
The Flinders Ranges

Monday 31st July 2006

The caravan and the ground around it was wet this morning, so we figure it must have rained during the night, although we didn't hear it. That may be due to the fact that we had the reverse cycle air conditioner running on high heat all night, and even then we were not over hot. At the time of retiring last night, the temperature was 4 degrees but this morning the rain warmed it up a bit and we woke to a reading of 6 degrees.

It was an easy start to the day and after our usual morning preparations, we drove out to the local cemetery where we paid a visit to Pam's Dad's grave to pay our respects and to obtain a few details from the headstone for later reference.

We then returned to the town centre where we visited the 'Information Centre' which is housed in an old railway carriage in the main street. 'One of Us' spied a pink hand towel with Peterborough embroidered on it so that was a necessary purchase, along with a fridge magnet that depicted the main street of Peterborough.

From here we walked down the main street whilst 'One of Us' counted all the hotels, really only four but that isn't bad for a town of only about 2,500 people in total. It appears that there was a population of about 5,000 people here when it was a rail head for three different gauges of rail lines, but once that was closed down, it only took about two years for the population to drop to about 2,000.

Whilst walking down the street, we called in to the local town hall and discovered a magnificent building that was built in 1927 at a cost of £13,961.0.6 and has been preserved very well. We ended up talking to the town council staff member who's role it is to keep Peterborough looking neat and clean and he was very proud of the town and in particular the 'Town Hall'.

It was then time to pay a visit to the local butcher where a couple of really good looking steaks were purchased for $9.95 kg and half a dozen thick beef sausages , all for a total cost of $8:55. Of course this meant we had to buy some honey in the IGA store to create a marinade so we walked out of IGA with a full basket of other goodies, having expended over $20 for that lot.

We then returned to the caravan park for a break and to enjoy the beef sausages that we bought at the butcher shop. Then some housework was completed and the computer was fired up as well.

This afternoon we went back down the street and visited the local library to carry out a little research and whilst there were assisted by a very lovely staff member by the name of Kath Giles. She spent so much time looking things up for us and offering to follow anything up if we wanted her to do so. It was over an hour later that we left for a short drive around the town before returning to the caravan again for the night.

By the time the sun was setting, the caravan park had almost filled up with caravans and people that were traveling to and from somewhere in Australia.

We on the other hand will be staying another day, so happy hour was the next thing on the agenda as 'One of Us' was walking around with her tongue hanging out and the 'Hurry up' look on her face. The 'Other One' succumbed to her demands and although it may have been cool outside, it was warm enough inside to enjoy a couple of 'cool' drinks before we considered dinner, which consisted of a chicken stir fry.

Tomorrow may see a visit Steamtown, which is a museum focusing on transportation of a bygone era, particularly Perterborough's narrow gauge railway heritage.

Pam at her Dads grave
Pam sitting at her Dad's grave

The inside of Peterborough Town Hall
The inside of the Peterborough Town Hall

Peterborough Steam Train on display
Steam Train on display in Peterborough

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