Dampier Peninsular

Beagle Bay Creek, High and Low tide.

Gnylmarung Campsite

After a full on 4WD on the Cape Leveque track, snapping our aeriel off at the base over the corrigations we turned off to the Gnylmarung campsite. This was the beginning of the rest of our trip around Oz. I had just finished my hospital prac and a bit of remote camping was just what I needed to relax. There’s really only so much you can do while camping and I find it helps me to switch off. Going back to basics with minimal meal prep and facilities, nil technology or mobile reception, no power so ablution blocks were lit by a truck battery on a solar panel, fresh caught fish, new snorkel mask bitten by coral trout freshly caught and landing in the boat, the boys almost walking on water when 3 sharks became aggressive after the coral trout was speared, campfires and tents… but nothing prepared us for our first night in our “2-man” hiking tent in the heat. It barely fit our double mattress, Esther had to sleep with us, we had to try not to touch each other to stay cool and be mindful of not squashing the child. I think we were awake most of the night. We were ever so grateful that our friends offered us their tent for the rest of our trip up the cape while they returned back to Broome. They had brought their trailer up and even had a camp kitchen set up!

  • Check out the size of the tent compared to Dan.. and our awesome tray set up ๐Ÿ™‚

Kooljaman Campground @Cape Leveque – Northernmost tip of the Dampier Peninsular.

I love the beach, this was a little windy though and a whole different ball game when trying to keep a youngen out of the sun, wind, sand and above water ha ha.

Meeting Ken Duncan OAM – Australian Landscape Photographer.

Being at the cape meant we could take sunset and sunrise photo’s, sunrise was early and I had put off sneaking out of the tent before the little one woke up to take some sunrise photo’s until the last morning. I took my camera and camera bag and stumbled out. It was beautiful and I have tried to capture that below. There were a few other people on the beach doing the same, although they had definitely risen earlier than I!!!

I am very much an amatuer photographer but would love to develop the skill, from memory I had a couple of questions on my mind regarding night photography and manual mode when I noticed someone also taking photo’s with the same cameras as me. I stopped and asked them my question, they then pointed me to a man coming up from the beach and suggested that he would be the best person to ask. This man was friendly and took my camera to have a look and answer my question… when he couldn’t turn it on, the battery had died. So I reached for my spare battery in my camera bag, only to realise my spare battery was in the nappy bag as that bag went everywhere. So no more assistance there with the camera and my question. I expressed how I would love to do a TAFE photography course and learn more, he proposed I only needed to do one course that would teach me everything I needed to know, to go to http://www.kenduncan.com and I would find the course there.

I asked him if he was Ken Duncan, he said yes. I thanked him for his time and he left.

There I was on a remote beach, alongside Ken Duncan, Australia’s most awarded Landscape Photographer, with an opportunity for a mini one on one lesson with camera in hand and the battery was dead. *face palm moment for sure.

Sacred Heart at Beagle Bay aka ‘Mother of Pearl Church’ – est. 1918

Banana Well Getaway – Dampier Peninsular

A perfect halfway stop driving back to Broome from the Cape. We loved the friendly feel of the place, the animals roaming and the sound of the donkey’s somewhere in the distance. Farmer Dan was right at home. I’ve seen peacocks before, but I don’t remember noticing how beautiful the female Peahen’s chest was. The green was so vibrant I had to take a photo! We again stayed in a tent here, went for a drive out to the Beagle Bay Creek, which is huge and has a significant change between the height of the tides as seen in the pictures below. The fear of crocodiles was real and I was on the lookout for any movement in the water, as well as keeping my distance from the edge. The creek is a popular fishing spot, but with stern warnings about cleaning fish near the water and ensuring you remove any waste!

High Tide/Low Tide – Banana Well

The Road in.
What made that ripple…..???

Katherine, NT.

We have now been travelling for 3 months… 13 weeks to be exact! Time has flown although some nights with little Miss E have dragged on hour by hour. Our perfect little sleeper is now… well… not!

We are currently in Katherine, we arrived last week and have visited Edith Falls (in the Nitmiluk National Park) and the Katherine Hot Springs, both of which are gorgeous natural pools and as you’ll see below way more enticing than going to the local swimming pool. I have also had the chance to meet up with one of the missionaries I served with in Sydney, Elder Richardson! After posting our whereabouts on Facebook he let me know he and his family live here in Katherine. We caught up at church and then they had us over for a roast dinner which was so nice on both accounts. Esther made a new friend in Zara, as she army crawled around the house and played with duplo!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Beebe’s & Richardson’s

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Besties! Esther just loved playing with Zara.

Edith Falls:

We started the hike when we first arrived, hoping to do the 8.4km return trip to Sweetwater Pool, but after an hour of hiking in the heat we found ourselves at Long Pool.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Long Pool

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
I want to go swimming!!

Esther enjoyed a swim in the water, followed by a “nature” play in the sand!! She loved every second of it and wasn’t too happy to have to redress and start the hike back.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Top Pool, Nitmiluk National Park

When we finished the hike, we had lunch with a Black Whip Snake, an apparent resident of the campground. Okay there is a story to this, I went to go to the toilet block and there were a group of about 8 people (early twenties) standing in front of the toilet, directly where I was walking towards, they were staring at me, as if they were waiting on me to join them, so they could go, which was really weird… until I got a metre away from a 2m black whip snake, which I unintentionally startled as I walked towards it (focusing on the weirdos looking at me) when a guy (around the blind corner of the toilet block) also now a metre away from the snake trying to take a photo of it said “watch out snake”… those “weirdos” were staring at me because I was walking towards the snake! Who let’s someone walk towards a snake? We then went to Edith Falls Pool. It was so much bigger than I expected, Gorgeous! Rumour has it that at the beginning of the season they removed a 3m Saltie!

 

Esther loovves to go in any temperature water including water cooler than I’m keen on… but she hated the blow up pool ring! So after attempting to swim out to the falls, trying to convince her that she liked it we swam her back, with her crying all the way ๐Ÿ™‚ Hopefully she’ll get used to it.

Katherine Gorge:

After a much needed day (for me anyway) preparing some meals to freeze we went out to Katherine Gorge with the Richardson’s. I had picked up a map with the walks on it from the Katherine Tourist Information Centre and was looking forward to going to “Southern Rockpool” roughly 2.5 km from the Visitors Centre. I even wore my bathers and packed Esther’s. After seeing some gorgeous “rockpools” and “Waterholes” I was sooooooo disappointed after hiking (with Esther on my front) an extra “0.5km” (whatever, I think they misplaced the dot point), straight down the Gorge to find a not so swimming holeย  ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

P1040139
Bit too green for my liking… although I’m sure in the wet season it is a huge waterhole as the watermark on the cliff face suggests!

Just prior to this we went to Pat’s lookout. What a spectacular view. This was definitely worth the hike.

P1040128

P1040122
Amazing hey!

We’ve had a great time in Katherine, all the better for the company we shared. I must note 7 yo Zara walked the whole thing! Such a champion.

To finish here are the most recent photo’s of our 10 month old baby girl we love…

 

Next stop Litchfield National Park.