Perth to Horrocks

Trip Start Apr 05, 2011
Trip End Nov 15, 2012

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Flag of Australia  , Western Australia,
Sunday, June 26, 2011

It was a grey rainy day as we drove out of Perth on the next stage of our journey. The new Indian Ocean Drive had opened since our last trip north so we were keen to experience the difference. We took our time driving along the coast calling into each of the seaside hamlets looking for somewhere to stay for a few nights.  Whilst Guilderton looked inviting it was too early in the day so we continued on to Jurien Bay. Whilst the caravan park left a lot to be desired, the area was lovely.

The 'Turquoise Walk' hugged the Jurien Bay foreshore and made for a delightful walk each morning. Whilst it was too rough to put our kayaks in the open ocean we were able to put them in at the marina and paddle around a secluded little sandy bay and around the array of fishing trawlers.

Jurien Bay was also a great base from which to visit Cervantes, home of the Pinnacles. Located in Nambung National Park, these unusual limestone formations create a moon like landscape. We were pleased to see that we could still drive and walk around these amazing structures without too many restrictions. The sky was such a clear blue and the contrast against the rich colour of the sand brought the Pinnacles to life.

Before we knew it, it was time to move on… I had often zipped through Dongara on my way to Geraldton for work and it was nice to be able to take the time to stop and spend a few days in this sleepy little town.

We stayed in a great little caravan park located right on the waterfront and beside the marina.  The foreshore was being eroded by the massive waves in front of our caravan park so a huge rock wall was being erected. Each evening when the workers had downed tools for the day we would move our chairs to the water's edge watching as the sun set and the surfers took advantage of the massive wave action until there was merely a twinkle of moonlight.  Once again we could notice the difference in the night sky with bright stars filling the entire sky; we could just sit there and admire it for hours.

We did some lovely walks following the foreshore and then inland along the banks of the Irwin River, we were blessed with lovely weather. We were once again able to put the kayaks in at the marina and paddle around. Here there was a little wave action which Rod took advantage of.

Leaving Dongara we made a quick pit stop in Geraldton to pick up supplies and then headed north once again along a coastal road which had not existed on our last trip in this area.

We came across the little sleepy hamlet of Horrocks and just loved it.  Horrocks is one of those old holiday places that families have been going to for years and where nothing much has ever changed.  There are a few homes, holiday shacks, a general store and caravan park. As we drove down the hill into the township below we had clear views out to sea of the whales migrating up the coast to the warmer waters. It was amazing just how close to the coast some of them came.

The foreshore was stunning with the beautiful colour of the water, crystal clear at the shore line and then graduating into deeper tones of blue and green as the depth varied around the reefs. The unobtrusive jetty juts only a short distance into the bay which is lined with sandy shores and a splattering of winter seaweed.

We longed to put the kayaks in the beach however it was quite choppy. The desire got the better of us on our second morning  and as soon as we were in the water we knew we were out of our depth (so to speak), so we went ashore, on my way in I got dumped from the kayak and it promptly came back to hit me on the head!

We cut our losses, lifted the kayaks back onto the roof and drove out to the mouth of Bowes River. There we were able to paddle the tranquil still waters. In stark contrast to the clear waters of the bay, the river had a rich dark tannin which afforded us magnificent reflections along our trip.  We had a black swan and several ducklings gliding effortlessly in front of us, whilst we watched eagles swooping in to catch their dinner.   It was a fantastically relaxing experience and we were surprised at how much we enjoyed paddling along the river.

Waking to another glorious day we extended our stay at Horrocks for another night and set off to Little Bay. It was a deep sandy 4WD track which hugged the coast, so we had to let our tyres down before we set off, it was simply a gorgeous drive.

We couldn’t believe on such a lovely day we had Little Bay to ourselves. We drove to the end of the bay and noticed footprints in the large sand hills behind us. On closer inspection we noticed a rope had been set-up to enable you to haul yourself up the near vertical slope.

It was such a stunning day and the view was so good we ended up hauling ourselves to the top and were rewarded with the best whale watching we have ever done.  We were lying (yet almost vertical), buried in the sand looking straight out to sea watching the whales frolicking in the open ocean.  We also enjoyed the most amazing views down over the bay across the stunning coloured water and coral reefs.

We spent at least an hour up there and it was hard to drag ourselves away, it was so incredibly relaxing and with the whales to entertain us, we were in awe. It was fun scrambling back down the dune with every step we sunk into the deep sand to mid shin!

We then drove the Navara onto the beach and set the kayaks up for a paddle.  Whilst the water was cold it was crystal clear.  We kayaked around taking advantage of the perspex bottom to admire the fish and coral.  We stopped for lunch on the beach and then went out for a snorkel, before having one last kayak before heading back to Horrocks having had the most awesome day… Words just can‘t describe how amazing it was; bar a couple of guys coming out and launching their boat we had the place to ourselves for the entire day. The pure pristine beauty of this little gem of an area is boundless.

It was hard to say goodbye to Horrocks but we had to keep heading north and so it was, back on the road…

Highlights of our Perth to Horrocks experience:

-          The Pinnacles

-          Sunsets at Dongara

-          Horrocks sleepy little holiday hamlet

-          Kayaking Bowes River

-          Our day at Little Bay

-          Climbing the sand dune

-          Whale watching

-          Kayaking over the reefs

-          Snorkelling
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Val S. on

and so the journey continues.... what a beautiful part of the world, the pictures, the words and... our imagination! Thank you for sharing it.

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