After leaving Carnarvon we did a two day express run down the west coast to Perth where we were to be joined by our friend Cheryl for a couple of weeks. We collected her from the airport in the wee hours of Monday morning and after a few hours rest we set off on our week long journey to explore the “Pathways to Wave Rock” passing through some of Western Australia’s eastern wheat belt. Our first day started with morning tea at the Old Mill in York which unfortunately is closed on Monday’s but fortunately we had our own freshly baked morning tea. Kokerbin Rock was our next stop where we spent a couple hours exploring Australia’s third largest monolith including a walk to its summit. We took advantage of the picnic facilities provided here to enjoy a bite of lunch before continuing on, making a short stop to visit the world’s smallest bank at Shackelton, then on to the RV friendly township of Bruce Rock which provides a 48 hour free camp for travellers.
A short drive and we were settling in to our new campsite. After enjoying a late lunch we opted to explore Wave Rock, the two billion year old granite cliff, standing 15 metres high and 110 metres long, shaped like a huge wave, which amazingly was right next to our campsite. Our plans were to remain here for a few days to explore the rock and the surrounding area. The next morning as the weather was favourable we broke out the bikes, to do a 350km circuit taking in Lake King, Newdegate and Lake Grace. This was planned as a reintroduction to biking for Cheryl and so the route was more scenic than challenging, the main challenge for Cheryl being the firm passenger perch on Steve’s Ducati and later the battle to stay warm and dry as storm clouds started to roll in. As we rode across the Lake King causeway the wind developed a very chilly bite, whipping up a froth at the edges of the never ending shallow salty waters creating a mystic landscape. After a refuel and morning tea/lunch stop at Newdegate, we rode on through Pingaring, Karlgarin and back to Hyden where we stopped to check out the metal sculptures in the park depicting the towns history before returning to our campsite without encountering any more rain. The following day we chose to walk along the base of Wave Rock to see the Hippo’s Yawn which looked very authentic and then continued on the Wave Rock walk, a 3.6km trail past Lake Magic and through an eerie and desolate landscape, conjuring scenic images similar to the movie “Lord of the Rings”.
We left our camp at Wave Rock today and detoured to see the last two attractions in the area, The Humps and Mulka’s Cave. The Humps proved to be very interesting and provided a rewarding walk to the summit. As we all wanted to see the State Barrier fence (The Rabbit Proof Fence,) we continued further up the road, to view this legendary structure, constructed between 1901 and 1907 stretching from Port Hedland to Esperance, being the number two fence of three which in total stretch 3256km. We doubled back through Hyden before continuing on towards Kulin via the Tin Horse Highway, dubbed a quirky open-air gallery, with a collection of clever community art providing a seriously entertaining drive. On towards Corrigin and the “Dog in a Ute”, the Dog holding the world record for 1,527 of a continuous queue of Dogs in Utes before a stop to visit the Dog Cemetery on the outskirts of town, with over 200 dogs buried here, a fine tribute to mans best friend. Our overnight stop was Brookton, a town with two pubs and as it turned out, both were closed, unbelievable, but true!! To complete our pathway journey the following day, we sampled and purchased some of Tanglefoot Winery’s produce and headed on to Fremantle.