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Newman - Day 24 n 25

Heading towards home on final leg.

Up at a leisurely time we breakfasted, read the paper and then, on hitching up the trailer, we jackknifed it and put a rather largish dent in the bumper...oogh! Given this was our last day in the bush I reckon we've done rather well and little damage to either the car or trailer. Mark on the other hand was not amused!
Before we left the town we popped into a local swimming hole - Garden Pool - that was about 4 ks out of town connected to the Nullagine river that runs alongside the settlement. The river is bordered on one side with lovely tall gum trees and we were lucky to be welcomed by the screeches of a large corella flock, a couple of elegant pelicans cruised off downstream and we watched a large bird of prey feed its little one in a nest high above us. A neat little picnic spot finished the place off. I believe this area once used to be Chinese vegetable gardens.
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Our trip to Newman went without mishap and we stayed overnight at the same place we had stayed at previously. On the way we passed through the gigantic Roy Hill Mine site where plenty of activity could be seen from the hill overlooking some of the site. In fact the site disappeared into the horizon - it is massive. The stats on this place are mind boggling with an independent rail system over 300 ks long taking the ore to Port Headland. This ore mine is connected with the latest technology etc., but it does leave a very big scar on our landscape. I just hope those overseas clients are paying enough for it! 59517ad0-c785-11e8-9d8e-3f9dd1f8c56a.jpg
We spent the night in Newman at the same place we'd previously stayed and aside from connecting up to free Wifi at Dome the rest of the day was spent catching up with the world and the inevitable shopping!
On the way through Meekatharra we detoured slightly to check out what was an old swimming hole when Mark worked there in the 70s. Now of course it is fenced off and one can't see the attraction as a swimming place - an old mining pit. 20180721_141026.jpg20180721_141102.jpg20180721_141129.jpg20180721_141003.jpg
Next day we left Newman around midday to head towards home and made it to a 24 hour stopover near Paynes Find which had toilets and enough wood to set up a campfire. As would be the case the heavens opened and we got the car lightly washed. There are always some silver linings!

Posted by Toot'speak 21:04 Tagged hill pool mine; nullagine;garden;roy; meeketharra Comments (0)

Further into the Outback - Day 11

Nature in the Outback (along with a bit of collecting!)


View Pilbara 2018 on Toot'speak's travel map.

Day 11
Our last day spent on the station we decided to drive out to place recommended by the owner as one to find the birds. We were lucky to see a mob of kangaroos in full flight across the countryside, reminded me of that Qantas ad where they follow the roos across the plains. We haven't really seen too many roos and not even one lizard. Makes one wonder a bit.
We stopped off for morning tea at a creek crossing which had a the more modern day set up for a windmill and water trough and standing proud next to it a nest, which we think belonged to a Wedge-tail, perched up on the top. We also found the scantiest remains of some man made structure buried up the banks.4f2a2740-9ed7-11e8-a496-959680411c65.jpgaec4cb10-9ed7-11e8-a496-959680411c65.jpg20180702_142104.jpgc4492ab0-9d3f-11e8-bd9d-35b0cb5b1324.jpgc46bf4f0-9d3f-11e8-ba58-1f814cba09fa.jpg
We came across a very large muddy waterhole which appeared to be permanent and on the the shore of the waterhole we found many Aboriginal artifacts - grinding stones, horseshoe core stones, and a variety of cutting tools. All those marvellous grinding bowls that the Aboriginals used have long been taken but what was left strewn around the lakeside indicated that this place must have once been an important one. However despite the amount of water present, no bird life! 1ec9ce90-9d40-11e8-af7b-130593ea5abd.jpg
By this stage we weren't too far away from 6 Mile Pool on the edges of the Little Sandy Desert so we decided to go check it out. After all, there may be birds or rocks! The drive though this part of the Pilbara is dominated by 2-4 metre high red sand dunes which were sparsely decorated by burnt, black, spindly bushes and the remains of flora that had escaped the fire. Interspersed amongst this scene was the odd dried up creek bed flanked by eucalyptus trees. We were lucky to see a couple of donkeys hiding in the scrub and they gave us a surprised look as they slid back into the countryside. We did find the pool which was a remnant in a very large, dry river bed. Aside from the odd polishing rock, the pool was bereft of anything interesting from the point of collectables, and the drive in and out was the highlight.2ae366f0-9eb7-11e8-bad4-b76313f8aeed.jpg
On the way back we were fortunate to find another supermarket which specialized mainly in glass and the odd rusty artifact. We were judicious in our choice of products removed and little was brought home.8b1ea280-a062-11e8-b47d-254547224850.jpg
Back to base in time for cheese and bickies with a drop of wine and another clear starlit night and satellites. My vacuum packed meals also mean that I can just arse up into the freezer ( it's too high and requires I get a step ladder to reach into the back of the Ranger) and rapidly produce a meal without too much ado. Glamping!

Posted by Toot'speak 01:19 Archived in Australia Tagged pool mile six Comments (0)

This is the end - Day 6

We start afresh


View Pilbara 2018 on Toot'speak's travel map.

Well this day starts well with flat battery again! Given this car has spent more time at the mechanics than on the road gives one the pips! Luckily we're with mates and a u- beaut gizmo is produced which jump starts the ranger and allows us to head to Meekathara to buy, along with groceries, fried chicken, petrol and a fancy battery for $210! This of course delayed our expected departure to Honeymoon Pool for lunch. I could only hope it was someone else's turn to have car problems!
We started the off road to a local watering hole cum camping place - Bunyiah Pool - which provided the local cattle with a place to huddle and eat. While the water was a tad brown, we were provided with a frenzied collection of birds - honey eaters, grebes, ducks, heron, galahs and parrots; no fish. Lunch done under tall white river gums we set off for our final resting point for the next few days. ac9112e0-998c-11e8-a894-4780aaba62c1.jpgSharing.jpg
We passed a "legacy" gold or copper mine - Horseshoe Lights - which was active back in the 1970s and 80s and the owners up and left the place without any environmental restoration. This was not a requirement in the 1970s and any form of restoration or environmental protection, is well and truly defunct now and chemicals leach out into the surrounding countryside which still holds cattle. It is an ugly, environmentally unsafe and unhealthy place and a disgrace to the mining industry. When you see the restoration efforts put into the mine sites by mining industry today, this must be an embarrassment. 3e46c920-902b-11e8-ad47-f12c37ee2697.jpg3f08b990-902b-11e8-ad47-f12c37ee2697.jpg3e4d7fe0-902b-11e8-bdf3-2f8e9d79c3e7.jpg20180703_094138.jpgbd7b3680-998c-11e8-a894-4780aaba62c1.jpg
Passing this sad piece of history which we will be revisiting, we forded a crossing, and parked for the next 3 days beside a large lagoon flanked by many river gums along side the water line and a large gibble plane which was a sure ankle breaker. Our leader has named it Honeymoon Pool. We expertly put our camper up in the daylight, joined the rest for a champagne at twilight and knocked off a curry that I had vacuum-packed. Easy! We also had the pleasure of a beautiful clear night sky and one of our fellow travelers, whose expertise is astronomy, gave us the benefit of his knowledge along with the ubiquitous green laser light! Many planes and satellites were recorded and maybe we saw the night lab cruising past.bc2f2e80-998c-11e8-a894-4780aaba62c1.jpg

Posted by Toot'speak 08:17 Archived in Australia Tagged lights mt pool horseshoe bunyiah Comments (0)

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