Twenty kilometres after leaving Cervantes on Thursday morning we hooked a left off the Indian Ocean Drive and into the Nambung National Park. While the Park is fringed with stunning beaches such as Kangaroo Point (so called because mobs of kangaroos gather at the beach at dawn and dusk) and Hangover Bay, our visit was to see the Pinnacles Desert.
Ancient limestone pillars scattered across the desert in their thousands create an eerie, lunar-like landscape. Some are as high as three and half metres and finish in a jagged point. Others have rounded domes resembling tombstones. There are several theories as to how the pillars evolved. Some say they are the calcified remains of trunks from a petrified forest buried by sand in a period of intense storms. Others say they are made up of shells, sand and limestone and date back millions of years to a period when the desert sand was beneath the sea. Whatever the story, we found the phenomenon very impressive and worth the deviation from the highway.
On leaving the National Park we made our way to Yanchep, 56km north of Perth and our home for the two nights. While the days were fine during our visit, we had very cold winds so relaxing on the beach was out of the question. Yanchep is another town with a very interesting history. Once a sheep farming area and a small crayfishing village, in 1970 entrepreneur Alan Bond bought approximately 8100 hectares of the surrounding land for the 1977 America’s Cup and his vision for the development of ‘Yanchep Sun City’. However we all know what happened to many of the ‘financial visionaries’ of the 70’s and Bond Corporation was just another. While Yanchep is growing, it is a million miles away from the 70’s prediction of 200,000 by the year 2000.
Friday morning we departed Yanchep and made our way into Perth. Perth is going to be our home for the next two weeks as we have family here and will spend time catching up. We are also bringing the three oldest grandsons across from New Zealand to Perth next weekend so they can travel with us for a time. We are not sure where our stops are going to be but we are sure the boys will not mind as long as they are with us and are in the motorhome.
On a final note in this update, we were very lucky last night and were able to get TV coverage of election night through TV1 with the help of ABC. Suffice to say we are both ecstatic with the result and feel MMP has come of age in New Zealand. There seems to be a far better understanding of the two types of vote. We are both praying that the 5 percent thresh hold does not change. There are enough loonies there already without adding to the pot.