Hello again, this time from Kununurra. I trust this entry will be more interesting than the previous one, typed at Darwin airport on a faulty keyboard.
Today sees me back in Kununurra and with a few things to write about. Sandi, Kylie, Jonah and I had a really terrific time in Darwin after the first night, when the backpackers kept us awake. We lashed out and rented a series of rooms in a caravan park, where we managed to accommodate ourselves for all but the last night without a prior booking. I was very proud of Kylie and Jonah for completing the "Douglas Darwin Dash 2010". We all really anjoyed the time together and will remember it for a long time. I really missed Kylie and Jonah when they flew out, after living so close together (we shared a 3 man tent all the way from Perth) for nearly three weeks.
Life goes on however and I was pleased to be able to enjoy Sandi's company for a day in Darwin while we waited for Blue to turn up. He experienced a slight 'hiccup' with his flight booking (missed the plane) so arrived a few hours later than planned. Better late than never though and we got to go to the Mindil Beach markets again.
We eventually left for Katherine on Friday morning, enjoying stops at Pine Creek along the way, where Sandi went on a 'walk through time'. Katherine was busy due to it being show day, although many of the shops were closed. Fortunately we found a good coffee shop open and spent an hour or two relaxing there.
We had hoped to go to Mataranka but I miscaculated the time and distance so there's another destination left for another day. Instead we headed west to Victoria River where we camped for the night. VR is a really beautiful spot and Blue took a few photos of the river etc. The photo attached is of Jonah and I there a week or so earlier.
That evening we camped near a couple from France, travelling the north by bicycle. Sandi was very interested and in the morning although we had left them behind she was still talking about doing a trip using that slower mode of transport. I am not so keen - I prefer my bicycle to have an engine in it. - watch this space to see if she converts me to pedal power!
We rolled along to Timber Creek where we were able to ride up onto the escarpment and enjoy the view from the lookouts. Previously, travelling behind Kylie, I had missed the lookouts as she was keen to press on toward Darwin. The land up this way (and the rivers) is very enjoyable this time of year with its mild weather conditions. However on the plaques at one lookout we read about the soldiers who had served in the area in the 40's and for whom the conditions must have been horrendous.
There followed a fairly brisk run accross the remainder of the Northern Territory part of our trip. I told Blue I wanted to let the BMW loose while I could do so relatively legally, and the Suzuki rose to the challenge and kept the faster pace up pretty well. Just after the border we turned off toward Lake Argyle.
Lake Argyle was a highlight of the trip both up and back. All three of us really anjoyed the sunset cruise on the lake and couldn't resist the opportunity to jump off the boat for a swim in the warm water at sunset - great fun!
Sunday morning saw Sandi and I leave Blue to check out the old Argyle homestead while we made a lightening tour of Kununurra. Unfortunately Sandi had to be on the plane back to reality at 10.15am and so missed out on breakfast at the Pumphouse Cafe. Blue and I took some photo's for her though!
Yesterday was spent catching up with some of my old contacts and friends here in Kununurra and touring around some of the Sandalwood plantations and other sights.
In the evening I had arranged to meet an olf friend and former client in town for a catchup over a drink in the tavern. As we were parking the bikes and meeting Noel, another bike pulled up and the rider asked for directions to accommodation. Tony (from Malaysia riding around Oz) stayed for dinner with us before pitching his tent near us on the banks of Lake Kununurra last night. This morning Noel took us on a very informative tour of some of the plantations and we took Tony on his first dirt road adventure.
Tony and Blue are presently riding to Wyndham for a look at the sights. I will complete this and meet them on the Halls Creek Road, all being well.
I probably won't get to blog much more before I get home to Perth (where I will be looking for an inside job by the sounds of the weather reports) so will leave you now to ride south. I'm never sure where we'll go each day but I expect we'll spend at least a day in Broome and then go to Hedland from where it sounds like we might take the coastal road home.
Hope you're all having fun.