Western Australia

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First leg: a loop from Perth to Perth via Karigini.
Second leg: North of WA arriving from the Tanami Desert to the Northern Territory via the Dampier Peninsula.

Western Australia

Western Australia. Half-a-day's drive from Perth heading north, our first experience of the bush is under dark, low-hanging skies.
Western Australia. The Tropic of Capricorn is now behind us. We obtain a permit to drive on a private track, property of a mining company, connecting Tom Price with the sea shore, 280 km northbound. Dust has already found its way inside the car...
Western Australia. We sometimes drive along the railroad tracks, also property of the mining company, in a landscape from which the red color gives way in the end.
Western Australia. Heading south, as we get close to Onslow, fine dust resumes penetrating inside.
Western Australia. Here, termites seem to like clay all right. We drive along their "villages"...
Western Australia. Ningaloo is our first encounter with a very airy kind of sand in which we get nicely bogged. It took us 16 hours of work to get out of it: shoveling, piling up alternate layers of sea-weeds and wet sand, and later on even pieces of coral and whale bones uncovered by the receding sea.
Western Australia. Natural pools offer a good opportunity to filter water and fill up our tank. We happily topped up here, but realized only the next day that we should have tried it first. It's brackish water!
Western Australia. To us, this landscape at Kennedy Range is emblematic of the outback, with its red track, yellow banks, green ribbon above the horizon and blue sky up above.
Western Australia. Off-tracking near Mount Augustus, our tires learn the hard way about wood chips. In this country, bush tires have 10 plies while ours have only 5... We also learn that it pays to wear boots sometimes...
Western Australia, north of the Murchison River. Well, at other times sandals are a better choice, such as in 35 degree-warm mud! Despite a number of showers and scrubbing sessions, our feet remained earth-colored for about two weeks. Foundation for feet, is that a new idea for cosmetics or what?
Western Australia. Getting close to Shark Bay, the sea wind carries more moisture and the bush gets a bit thicker, taking on a darker shade of green sandwiched between red earth and blue sky.
Western Australia. We are welcomed in Kalbarri by exotic grass-trees standing on a layer of bright yellow sand which here covers the red sandstone.
Western Australia. By the seashore, red sandstone is back.
Western Australia. Close to Cervantes and famous yellow Pinnacles, a reputedly difficult track leads to Lancelin further south. "Make sure you have two spare wheels" was the advice offered by the locals.
Western Australia, east of Albany. To reach the mouth of the Fitzgerald River 20 km away takes about an hour's drive on the National Park's tracks. And that's during the dry season!
Western Australia. From Hyden eastbound, an easy track follows the outlines of a lake where salt has killed all vegetation. Past this lake, the track returns to its monotonous straight course.
Western Australia. Nearing Kalgoorlie, dirt roads occasionally turn into sandy tracks, then resume their straight line appearance.
Western Australia. Between Norseman and Esperance, a few lakes come back to life after the rain.
Western Australia. 200 kms of tracks connect Esperance to Belladonia, for serious off-road lovers only. Our experience on this track was further spiced up with a bushfire which luckily for us, remained under our wind.
Western Australia. A semi-arid 1200 km plain separates us from the next town which will be in the next state, i.e. South Australia. In the middle of our crossing of the Nullarbor, we took some tracks through the Roe Plains to find a bivvy spot by the sea shore. This was our last off-road experience in Western Australia.
Western Australia. A road train needs at least one kilometer to come to a stop... To be on the safe side, we listen to channel 40 on a UHF radio and keep a good eye on our rear view mirror. This way, we know when to pull off and let these road giants go past us, driving at the speed limit of 110 km/h.
Western Australia. We were warned that wildlife and stray animals frequently cross roads or tracks in this country. In such an event, being able to come to a stop may be the key, but we were also advised to avoid driving at sunrise and sunset, hours when animals are most active.
Western Australia. Coming across one of Alistair's ancestors, such as here in Tom Price a Series III, is always a pleasant surprise, even if we do not always have the pleasure of meeting its proud, loving owner.
Western Australia. Most dirt roads are regularly evened out by caterpillars, making it possible for regular cars to use them during the dry season.
After the rain, they turn into mud fields. And after heavy rainfalls, even a 4WD might get stuck.
Western Australia. Although Alistair was out of the container where it had been loaded in Dubai, it was not declared road-worthy on time to take part in the day-outing in Harvey Hills organized through the AULRO website. So Robert got invited to join Stuart and his black Defender for his first off-road experience in Australia, during which he got to meet a group of Land Rover owners in the area.
Western Australia. The Perth Royal Show is a grand yearly event which gave us a chance to meet a cousin of Alistair's: an Australian army vehicle fitted with an Izuzu 3.9 liter-engine!
Towns, the city of Perth and more about Western Australia