Toilet Bowls and other things !!!

Trip Start Jul 25, 2012
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Australia  , Western Australia,
Saturday, November 24, 2012

Somewhere along the way I met another 'nomad' from Kalgoorlie who suggested taking the ocean road from Hopetoun to Esperance as it is a beautiful drive.

So I set off from Borden and made my way to the next town on my agenda...Boxwood Hill a small dot on the map some 60 km away. From here it was on to Jerramungup.
Jerramungup  is an Aboriginal word said to mean "place of upstanding yate trees". The yate tree is a variety of Eucalypt tree which is evergreen and grows to a height of 20 m and a width of 4 m. It has orange bud caps and greenish yellow flowers, and is common in the south west of WA. The name was first recorded by Surveyor General John Septimus Roe in 1847, when carrying out exploration of the area, noting that natives referred to the river and its numerous branches as "Jeer-A-Mung-Up". Roe later named the same river near its mouth the Gairdner River, not realising they were the same, and this is the name now used for the river.The town hall was opened in April 1958 and is know colloquially as the 'Root Pickers Hall' as it was paid for by volunteers picking mallee roots.200 tonnes of Verde Laguna granite from Jerramungup was used to make the Australian War Memorial in London that was opened in 2003.The road from Jerramungup to Ravensthorpe was mostly straight and uninteresting. There were a few wild flowers jutting out of the ground here and there to add a little colour to what was, another bleak day.

  In 1848, the area was surveyed by Surveyor General John Septimus Roe who named many of the geographical features nearby, including the nearby Ravensthorpe Range that the town is named after. The area was first settled by the Dunn brothers during 1868.Another of the Dunn brothers, James Dunn discovered gold at Annabel Creek and was awarded a claim by the government. More profitable discoveries followed in 1900 that resulted in a boom. The population climbed to over 1000 and by 1901 the government gazetted the town of Ravensthorpe.The government completed construction of a copper and gold smelter about 2 km south east of the town in 1906, used to cast copper and gold ingots. At its peak of production the smelter employed over 120 men, the now disused smelter is still there and is surrounded by massive piles of tailings waste.The area continued to prosper and the population grew accordingly, by 1909 the population was over 3000. The prosperity was short-lived; World War I took its toll on the town and by 1918 the local copper smelter had closed and many of the copper and gold mines had closed.

Ravensthorpe community centre, originally Freemason accommodation built in 1906 

It was still overcast and cold when I arrived so I decided that sightseeing was not on my agenda for the day and sought out a place to rest for the night.
That wasn't hard, as there is only one park in town so off I went in search of it. What an extraordinary place. At first I thought I'd arrived at the local tip as there was so much 'stuff' outside the office entrance. Old toilet bowls lined one side of the entrance and odd bits of cars and household appliances lined the other. Weird for a caravan park. The amenities block was something else, clean but a 'little' out of date. It was also obvious the owner loved plants and old things as there were plants everywhere, in old boots, pots, pans, you name it, he had a plant in it.
The night was doomed as the approaching clouds bought with them thunder and lightening, so I settled in and hoped none of the surrounding trees would come crashing down on me.

Well I survived another horrible stormy night without any damage...

Off to Hopetoun and the 'beautiful' coastal drive today.

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