After a hard day’s dusty driving a deep drive through scrubby creek brings you to one of many oases just off the Old Telegraph Track in Cape York.
Eliot and Twin Falls are barely 50m apart, offering a crocodile free area to swim, or just relax and wash the grime off the skin. Don’t use soap though as it kills the fish and other inhabitants in the river. The campsite is within the National Park and must be booked before arrival, but worth a stop for a day or two.
Categories: 4WD, Adventure, australia, Australian Outback, Big Lap, Discover Australia, Explore, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, National Park, Offroad, Queensland, Road trip, Travel
Tags: Eliot Falls, Old Telegraph Track, Twin Falls
Kings Canyon is a spectacle that is best appreciated from the edge of the sheer cliffs on either side. Take the rim walk, start as early in the day as you can, as it can get very hot here during the day. Take plenty of water, and enjoy the 6km walk in Watarrka National park. The steps that climb the sides of the canyon at the start are guaranteed to get the heart pumping. Make sure you stop for a swim in the Garden of Eden to cool down, though it can be icy cold at this time of year. The “Lost city” domes half way around reminded us of the Bungle Bungles, but the precipitous cliffs on both sides take your breath away as you stand on their edge gazing down the tree-lined canyon floor, some hundred metres below.
Categories: 4WD, Adventure, australia, Australian Outback, Big Lap, Discover Australia, Explore, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, National Park, NT, Photography, Road trip
Tags: Watarrka National Park
Fifty Toes at South Point
We made it!
We did it – the final compass point extremity of mainland Australia
Hannah and friend at Lucky Bay
Tick infested shingleback
Xavier dives in!
Tassie Devil at Trial Harbour
Just before we took off, our friends got equally excited with our plans and started giving us challenges to do. The straight forward ones were to visit the compass points of the mainland, swim in the coldest water (Lake St.Clair), climb the highest mountain, etc. Then the kids started getting more from their friends, things like catch a fish in every state, spotting different animals (e.g. Tassie Devils), learning to tie different knots, sending pictures of patting a safe native animal, and the list went on.
It gave them something to focus on, kept them in touch with their school friends back home, and made them think about where they were at any time, adding to their education, as well as ticking off the lists.
What does everyone else out there do to keep the kids occupied and interested as you move around?
Categories: 4WD, Adventure, Animal Action, australia, Australian Outback, Big Lap, Challenges, Discover Australia, Explore, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, Kids Travel, Road trip, Travel, Travel Adventure
An overdue trip, rushing to see too much in too little a time. London, Oxford, Raglan, a tiny corner of France, and a glimpse of Switzerland. Lots of people to catchup with ….. we gave it a good go but it was not the relaxing immersion approach that Fifty Toes prefers to take when travelling.
Dead seal skull
Turtle embryo in shell
Gantheaume Point dinosaur footprint
Beach artist at work
Dead crocodile on the beach
Shell Christmas Tree
Shark and ray egg cases
Humpy town in Cape York
Seadragons washed up on the beach
Eighty Mile Beach
Hooded Plover Eggs
Chambered nautilus shells
Tasmanian Devil tracks
With three inquisitive young children there’s nothing better to keep them occupied that a few hours beachcombing on a remote beach.
The excitement of finding some fascinating creatures in rock pools, animal tracks on the sand, sea-bird eggs concealed immaculately by their coloured camouflage alone, would find us relentlessly exploring one beach after another. Sometimes we would find a sad carcass abandoned by the ocean, seals, crocodiles, turtles, sea-dragons, even a dolphin, but more often a treasure would left for us to marvel at, the chambered nautilus shells, colourful starfish, shark’s eggs and shipwrecks.
Unknown objects often had to be researched and extended the education process.
Collections were often converted into natural works of art too, a sea-shell Christmas tree, kids art projects for school, or just random creations.
Categories: australia, Australian Outback, Beach, Big Lap, Discover Australia, Explore, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, Kids Travel, Natural World, Road trip, Travel, Travel Adventure
Pink Lake, Port Gregory
The brilliance of the Pink Lake, also known as Hutt Lagoon, near Port Gregory in WA grabs your attention as you drive past. We had to stop for a closer look.
The colouration is caused by an algae that tolerates high salinity and produces carotenoids that give it the pink hue that changes dramatically depending upon the light.
Categories: Adventure, australia, Australian Outback, Big Lap, Discover Australia, Explore, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, Natural World, Road trip, West Australia
Tags: Hutt Lagoon, Pink Lake, Port Gregory
Algebuckina Bridge with 1948 FJ Holden
This rusting monument to the Victorian era spans the Neales River, an area prone to flooding, and the impressive engineering still dominates its surroundings 125 years after its official opening. Long disused three graves lie nearby, and a rusty 1948 FJ Holden that was hit by a train as it tried to cross the bridge in a flood
With a total length of 580m long, built in the remote heat of an area west of Lake Eyre and near the southern reaches of the Simpson desert, its worth a stop, if only to cool off in the river.
Categories: 4WD, Adventure, australia, Australian Outback, Big Lap, Discover Australia, Explore, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, Offroad, Photography, Photos, Road trip, South Australia, Travel, Travel Adventure
Tags: Algebuckina, Canon
As a kid growing up in the UK, the picture books I had of Australia displayed magnificent photos of places with magnificent rock formations like Uluru, Kata Tjuta, and Wave Rock. When you actually visit these places the impact is often greater, particularly spiritual places like Uluru and Kata Tjuta, but despite not being in a rush I felt I had waited long enough and was drawn directly to Hyden, and Wave Rock at the western end of the Nullarbor. When many folk reach the township of Norsemen they usually head north towards Kalgoorlie, or south to Esperance. Our map found what turned out to be a beautiful dirt road heading straight for Hyden so off we went. Along the way we found pristine quiet campsites by the side of mountains, and one called the breakaways with gorgeous rock colourations, even a “mini” wave rock (yes, there are more than one).
The rock itself did not disappoint from sheer height alone, and despite being a busy tourist spot, it was clean and never seemed overcrowded. The kids tried out their best surfing stances on the rock face, and with a lifelong dream met we sat and contemplated where to go next.
Categories: Adventure, australia, Australian Outback, Big Lap, Discover Australia, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, Kids Travel, Natural World, Road trip, West Australia
Tags: Canon EOS, Hyden, Wave Rock
Eucla Telegraph Station
Eucla Telegraph Station
Eucla Telegraph Station
Eucla Telegraph Station
The modern day settlement of Eucla lies half way across the Nullarbor Desert, 11km from the border of WA and SA. a few kilometers away, below the escarpment, advancing sand dunes have marched on the old telegraph station. Not far beyond, the remnants of a sturdy wooden jetty on the desolate beach, final fragments of a port established in the 1870’s, cling to their structure. The telegraph line followed shortly after in the same decade and the settlement became an important repeater station on the line between Albany and Adelaide.
Ironically, it was a plague of introduced rabbits in the 1890’s that ate all vegetation that led to destabilisation of the dunes that went on to engulf the settlement, that was relocated to the nearby escarpment.
Categories: 4WD, Adventure, australia, Australian Outback, Beach, Big Lap, Discover Australia, Explore, Explore Australia, Journey Narrative, Road trip, Travel, Travel Adventure, West Australia
Tags: Eucla, Eucla Jetty, Eucla Telegraph Station