Beautiful Gorges

Trip Start Jun 15, 2004
Trip End Jun 15, 2005

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Sunday, October 31, 2004

Saturday 30th October
Trip back to Perth, going inland this time, via Karajini National Park.

Only eight people this time, me, Matt & Nick, plus Fabienne, Eleeza from France, Steph from Switzerland, and Matt from Switzerland, and Paul from England.

Long long drive today - 650km, and scenery soon gets even sparser, desert like, with the earth very red (apparently due to the high levels of iron in the soil). Pass through the occassional small mining town, and then onto our camping destination for the night, just outside the park.

No facilities here - just a piece of land adjacent to the dirt road - no need to worry about traffic, there isnt any. Go for a swim in the gorge a mile away - which was so refreshing, and return to enjoy a nice huge fire from wood we collected earlier.

Sunday 31st October 2004
Woken up by the sun shining through the tent at 5am, and got up - nobody else awake, and it was great to just look out over nothing, with perfect quiet, apart from the odd bird. Have seen a fare few kangaroos and Emu's as we travel, but they stay away from where we camp.

More gorge walking and swimming in beautiful water holes - diving off the side, waterfalls cascading down, slippery surfaces, and excellent fun.

Monday 1st November 2004
Further day of gorge walking and swimming - god its a hard life. The whole area is so beautiful, and so remote. Down steep winding paths (which unfortunately you have to climb up again) and then you see the perfect swimming places - you escape the fl;ies (there are millions of them), and the heat - its about 36-38c and swim with the beautiful backdrop - SE Asia, move over - you've got competition!

I'm actually writing this on a plateau above a waterfall (Fortescue Falls), after havinga nice sleep in the sun, and move on to dive into the water.

New campsite this evening - again no electricity, and only a few other people around, but as we are in the National Park, we cant have a fire either, which is a shame, especially as every bug going gets attracted to the electric bus light - and there are some very big bugs, who seem to have no coordination -they just fly right at you!

Another thing very noticeable about Australia is litter - the absence of it - even in the parks, where there are very few bins (they want you to take your rubbish home), there is still no litter - it makes it so much nicer.

Monday 2nd November 2004
Lots of travelling today - through the occassional mining tow, and onto Nallan Sheep station. Quite often see giant trucks being transported around, taking over the road (even their wheels are carried on "Oversized" lorries).

Sheep station takes in tourists to supplement their income - we still camp on their grounds, and have a go at the steel drum rodeo - steel drum attached to steel cables - all of us fall of and have some injury.

Allowed to have campfires again - I chicken out of playing Beerhunter - a version of the film Deerhunter where you play Russian roulette with one shaken up beer can...but none explodes.

Tuesday 3rd November 2004
Everybody hungover on the bus, useful for further long journey. Reach New Norcia - described as a collection of Spanish style buildings, founded by Spanish Monks, but overall, apart from the odd building, not very inspiring - its still a spread out Aussie town.

Finally, onto chocolate factory and winery, which is a nice finale, and then return to Perth.
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