Esperance here we come! Through the Stirling Ranges national park. Lots of flat land then suddenly, huge mountains appear in front of you. Started down a gravel road that was labelled a tourist drive but as it started to get a bit bumpy and we were only in a little Barina, we went back to the main road. Lots of stops for beautiful wildflowers then up to Bluff Knoll. You see lots of changes in flowers and soil types in very small areas. Bits of this road were steep but sealed, so easy to drive on.
Next stop was Ravensthorpe where we ate a small meal at the BP station and also filled up to make sure we had enough fuel to get to Esperance. Lots of dry type lake beds on the way down and a great variety of eucalypts. Miss W is amazed at how much dead wood there is on the side of the roads. Apparently these particular trees drop lots of limbs after it has been windy.
Into Esperance past the Pink Lake that was more white and sandy looking than pink. Not sure of finding our motel in Esperance but knew it was on the Esplanade so we headed towards the foreshore. Lovely meal of Samson fish, which is a locally caught species. Also had four prawns on top and some salad and chips. We had no sleep the first night as young girls in late teens or early twenties stayed up all night talking outside their unit, then about 4pm a young man joined them with music coming out of his car. They weren’t loud, loud, but enough continuous murmur to keep people awake. Of course, no one rang management, but many complained the next day.
Off next to Cape Arid and Cape Le Grande national parks. Cape Arid is about 120 km east of Esperance – a long drive but very few things to see once you get there, unless you are in a 4WD. We headed down to Thomas River to look at the white sandy beach then back on the road back to Esperance. Stopped off at a tavern/Service station/shop to get some lunch and a cold drink. The owner recommended going down to Duke of Orleans Bay. What a great little place – Wharton Beach was lovely sand and warm water. Miss W even dipped her toes in here. Many of the little beaches have had seaweed on them but this one didn’t.
We stayed on a gravel road that ran parallel to the main sealed road but about 10km between them. Saw lots of little blue tongue lizards along the road and other wildflowers we hadn’t seen elsewhere. Glad we are trying to find them on our own. Gives me a chance to get out of the car and stretch my legs.
Miss W had been told by someone on Twitter to make sure she visited Lucky Beach in the Cape Le Grande national park. WOW! Very, very white sand very shallow water. Another place to dip the toes. Lots of lovely bays and short little drives in this national park and only a short drive from Esperance. No need for 4WD here. Last day of the school holidays so lots of families having picnics and barbecues near the beaches. Back home to the unit to another lovely meal of King fish which is the better known name for Samson fish. Booked our accommodation in Hyden for Wave Rock. No immediate reply so hope we get an email before we leave in two days.
Our last day in Esperance was quiet, time to do the washing, catch up on some blogging and write the post for the student blogging challenge. Chatted to my new neighbours. Poor woman had got out of their car to take a photo of a wildflower, twisted her ankle she thought, but had to call into a hospital the next day where she found she had a broken bone in her leg instead. Couldn’t put a full cast on it as it was so swollen, instead lots of bandages and keep feet off the ground.