Map of the region, showing Margaret River in relation to Perth:
Today we drove down to Margaret River (330km including small diversions), via Mandurah (bypass), Bunbury (bypass), Busselton (bypass) and Dunsborough, visiting Meelup, Eagle Bay (afternoon tea with the Wadleys) then on to Margaret River.
Margaret River running through the town of Margaret River:
Walk from Margaret River township along the old railway track by the river, up to "Water's Edge", where many happy memories with Parrys and friends were experienced. Lovely bushland, forest, with still some wildflowers visible!
Barrett Street weir reservoir:
Water's Edge weir and reservoir:
"Water's Edge", formerly Parry/Masarei holiday home, now barely visible through the foliage they worked hard to establish:
Formerly Dave's chalet, adjacent to Water's Edge:
Wildflowers on bush track near Water's Edge, Margaret River:
Later, we visited a few beaches, etc near Margaret River today (Tues).
The mouth of the Margaret River:
Prevelly Park beach (near Margaret River) - actually, Gnarabup Beach:
Gas Bay, near Margaret River:
Surfing beach, Prevelly (Margaret River):
Boranup Forest, karri trees galore! One of my favourite places.
Fascinating berries on this shrub. I've no idea what they are...???
We then drove on down to Augusta and Cape Leeuwin, calling in at Hamelin Bay on the way.
Cape Leeuwin - lighthouse in background - where the Indian Ocean meets the Southern Ocean:
The ancient (and calcified) water wheel at Cape Leeuwin:
Flinders Bay, Augusta:
Hamelin Bay, whence lots of karri timber was exported, eg to England, where it formed the foundation of many London streets (until the focus shifted to the even harder jarrah timber):
In the morning, we mooched along the main street of Margaret River, calling in (especially) at the book store, Lloyd's wonderful browsing shop, and of course the Fudge Factory (with coffee).
Visited Woody Nook winery for lunch today (lovely meal!), and a few wines (really liked their chenin blanc 2019), and also bought some cabernet-merlot 2016, which was also really nice. BTW, Woody Nook wines were showcased in England for many years by the Woody Nook restaurant in the Oxfordshire village of Woodcote - I've been there, but don't recall the restaurant. Of course, our little house in Bourton-on-the-Water we called "The Nook", so maybe I have an affinity to this winery...???
Later today, we visited Voyager Wines, mainly for the beauty of their gardens, especially roses. They own the rights to the name of the Dutch East India Company, hence (perhaps) their choice of (very pleasant) architecture.
Just Joey rose (lovely colour & strong spicy scent):
Finally today we visited Redgate Beach (not far from Margaret River, but further than Prevelly). Also a spot much favoured by the Parrys and again many lovely memories of times spent down here with them. Combination of broad beach, surfing waves, lovely rock formations, and quiet gentle beaches.
Visited Busselton Jetty on the way home today. We didn't actually venture onto the jetty beyond the ticket booth - it costs $4 just to walk on it, and more to take the train. The Jetty is 1,841m long (the longest something in the somewhere!*). It was first built in 1865, with extra metres added periodically. Parts of it were destroyed by cyclone Alby in early 1978. The train is a fairly recent feature, all-electric and now fully powered by solar energy (one fine day will provide enough power to run the train for 3 days). There is a wonderful underwater observatory at the end (I have visited that in the past, so skipped it this time).
*”longest wooden piled jetty in the Southern Hemisphere”.
The iconic buildings at the start of the jetty:
The full extent of the jetty - the end just visible in the distance:
The electric train passing the cruise liner tender platform:
Beautiful coral gums in the car park:
Traveling through the hills inland from Bunbury, we came across "King Jarrah", some 400 years old, amidst a lot of jarrah and mixed forest. Sadly, "die-back" has decimated the jarrah through here. We encountered some curious locals...
Last stop on the way home was at Wellington Dam, recently the recipient of a wonderful dam wall mural, 8,000 sqm in area, painted by Guido Van Helten. His work includes several wheat bin silo murals. This mural is part of a series of murals in the Collie region. Sadly, the salinity of the water in the dam means that, since 2013, it has not been a source of potable water, and has only limited agricultural use (its salinity has risen from 300 mg/L to 1,000 mg/L); it is the second-largest reservoir in WA (after Lake Argyle). The dam was started in 1931 as a Depression-busting project.
A panorama (stitched together) from below the dam wall:
Seen from the Lookout above the dam:
A female fairy wren, sorry a little out of focus! But the only wren we saw on our whole 4-day trip...:
Home by 4:15pm, having driven 355km from Margaret River (including diversion to Wellington dam).