After a few days spent in Karratha and Dampier having a brief look around again since last trip there, we left for one of our favourite places since visiting it back in 2007 and that was Exmouth.
.It turned out the day we left Karratha it had ended up being a heatwave and the temp outside in the shade reached a scorcher of 51 degrees,safely saying this was definitely one of the hottest days we had experienced during our years of travelling,it’s times like these when all you have on your mind is swimming so that’s what we set out to do and started heading for Exmouth for Christmas day.
We didn’t bother with driving out to Onslow this time as we found ourselves determined to make it to Exmouth quickly,though we did stop at Nanuatarra Roadhouse for a break and met a few other travelers stopped as well,couldn’t believe at that later hour in the night the temp had only dropped down to 41degrees,continuing further on we stopped at rest area for the night.We left fairly early the next morning to make it to Exmouth while still daylight,which we did and pulled up at Ningaloo Resort where we stayed back in 07,this time round we were told they couldn’t fit us on the one site in the pet area.They suggested we try “Yardie Homestead” as they also took pets so back in the bus and out we went it’s about 55 klms out of Exmouth on the western side of Exmouth and not far from entry into Cape Range National Park.We were quoted roughly $800 a week but with strict restrictions to what we used, there were no kettles,frying pans,toasters,air cons …etc allowed, as there was limited power supply.The lady was quite abrupt and we were keen to get out of there with her uninviting attitude,so for us it was back to Exmouth, really not knowing what to do as all we wanted to do was to plug in over Christmas day.
That night we spent by the dry dock out of town and went for a walk along the beach cooling off with our feet in the water,it was the first time for us in a while we had comfortably stepped into the water with no worry about stingers and crocs!
The next day we visited the info centre in hope that they may know of another place we could plug in,they were helpful but there was nothing new we didn’t already know about,the next step we took was a visit to the shire council simply to inquire about the overflow parking,not the best move as a shire councillor who dealt with our inquiry was rude and most unhelpful,she stated the overflow was not open in the not so busy period and suggested we simply book into a motel room over the Christmas break but what to do with 19 metres of motor home and trailer and the two dogs and cockatoo was our worries she said.We left and stayed parked out the front of the council building for a while contemplating what to do,on a brighter note the kids saved a galah from passing out in the heat the poor fella was thirsty.
While still parked out the front of the council building we spotted the ranger leave the car park and pass us by and pull up within sight of our bus to watch us from where he was hiding behind the bushes,Beaudine stood there filming him , he was there for a couple of hours I suppose to watch for our next move of where we were going to park up for the night, as those of you who know Exmouth there’s not many places you can park and not be hassled by a ranger.While thinking of what to do next Pete got talking to a fireman, he asked him about the prawn company just out of Exmouth as we had seen a few motor homes parked up there, he said it was unlikely that they would take us, until Pete mentinoned he was a refrigeration mechanic, he suggested it was definitely worth a try as they could maybe use another mechanic for a couple weeks.
We left with a plan to stop one more time at Ningaloo resort then our second option the prawn company with the last option of just driving out and spending Christmas day driving.
Our stop at Ningaloo resort was successful,since inquiring the day before about a site the receptionist had spoken to management and said we were welcome to stay and was allowing us to take up two sites as it was during the quiet season,they quoted us $385 for the week,the most we have ever paid for a site but we were happy to have somewhere over Christmas day to plug in and it was worth every cent to cool off in their pool.
We spent a few weeks in Exmouth and just on the day we were packing up the manager came and saw us to say we were welcome to stay at a reduced rate of $250 a week
In our time at Exmouth we explored the Cape Range National Park something we had missed last time due to the looming cyclone.
Entry into the the park is $11 a vechile but there are other passes available $40 for a holiday pass which entitles you entry to any national park within WA for a month,there’s also a yearly pass.There is camping available at a number of different spots throughout the park and allot have toilets but there’s only one area where you could park a big rig which was Mesa Camp,fees apply but no dogs allowed of course.
.One of our favourite swimming spots was Turquoise Bay, we also snorkeled there as well and enjoyed looking at the sea life from star fish to brightly coloured fish and sting rays.Another place we swam at was Sandy Bay, great on a not so windy day ,unless you are into kite surfing then it’s a top place for that!
The biggest highlight to our trip to Exmouth this time was experiencing seeing the turtles making their way up the sand banks and digging a hole to lay their eggs a pretty gruelling task for them when you watch how long it takes them to successfully do this.We didn’t actually go with a guide we went by ourselves but respected the rules with the turtles.There’s a brochure available at the Jurabi Turtle Centre which explains the do’s and don’ts.The best place to catch a glimpse of this happening is between Hunters and Wobri beaches.The turtle nesting season is between December and March.We expected we may only see couple but were quite surprised when we lost count to how many we saw in one night.
Just one of the many emu’s seen around town
|The SS Mildura wreck,it was high tide so not as much of the wreck could be seen
The beach near the harbour just out of town
The far end of Sandy Bay
Sand Dunes in the Cape Range National Park
Farewell to Exmouth!
Coral Bay the sunset viewing platform!
Pet Cemetery,Coral Bay
Our campsite for the night,this was sunrise!