Side trip to Kalgoorlie 

After surviving our night in Sandstone with the gale force winds, we packed up early to head to Laverton. On the way out we went to visit “Lady Di” of Sandstone! Now Lady Di is a unique character and you can’t miss her, she even yelled out to us as we were driving past and told us we had to try her pies!

She is set up in the main street just near the information centre and sells the most yummy pies and pasties cooked to order. Her dukkah is equally as good, made from bush ingredients collected locally by Lady Di and indigenous woman. Of course we bought a pie and some dukkah!IMG_8279Next to Lady Di is an Asian guy selling fresh homemade bread and sauces, as well as fresh veggies. The bread was yum (and huge!) and so was the BBQ sauce.IMG_8294Before leaving for the day we went to visit ‘London Bridge’, an attraction just out of Sandstone.IMG_8285Now this is when the plans changed a little, when we saw a sign for Kalgoorlie. We had both wanted to go so we quickly got out the maps and saw that it wasn’t that far out of our way so decided to detour there for the night! We found an off-road shortcut and set out on our way.

Being a quick overnight stop we didn’t have too long to explore but it at least gave us an idea of what it was like, more than you see on Kalgoorlie Cops!!IMG_8299The one thing we wanted to do was check out The Super Pit. This is the biggest open pit gold mine in Australia and it is HUGE! Unfortunately we didn’t have enough time to do a tour so had to settle for the lookout.IMG_8297IMG_8298IMG_8300IMG_8303IMG_8305IMG_8307IMG_8312IMG_8317The other tour we would have loved to do was of Questa Casa, the oldest working brothel in Western Australia! It is known to have been operational in the early 1900’s and has had a working life of at least 115 years as a brothel….. next time! And yes they do actual tours of the joint, we weren’t intending on ‘visiting’!

Kalgoorlie is quite a large town with some lovely old buildings, particularly some of the pubs, which are basically on every corner!IMG_8325After a freezing cold night in Kalgoorlie, our coldest night yet, we packed up in 1 degree temperatures and headed off to start our return journey home via the Great Central Road (GCR).

On the way back up the freeway to join the GCR we stumbled across a little ghost town called Gwalia. IMG_8329This living ghost town is the remains of a small settlement around the Sons of Gwalia Mine that flourished in the 1890s until 28 December 1963 when it closed and put 250 men out of work. Gwalia’s population of approx. 1200 fell to just 40 in less than 3 weeks.IMG_8332IMG_8333Today, you can walk through the  abandoned homes and businesses of the once thriving town.IMG_8336Apparently back in the day people weren’t as tall as George!  He would have struggled in there houses!

Geraldton

Tonight we are staying in a little town called Sandstone.  We are both sitting in the camper because it’s so incredibly windy outside! Apparently wind gusts of up to 50km/h and wouldn’t be surprised if they are higher. Camper is going ok, but we have put out some guy ropes as even the chairs were being blown over before.​ Little tip, it you need pegs in the ground here, bring your drill! There is no way you are hammering into this ground!

We’ve just spent the last two days in Geraldton. Geraldton is huge compared to where we’ve been recently, it’s basically a city I guess. All the big department stores and fast food joints etc.

On the way from Kalbarri to Geraldton we visited a couple of towns, Horrocks & Northampton. Horrocks is a small little seaside beach town. It looked like it would be a nice spot to spend a few days, particularly if you like fishing and just wanted some quite time. Northampton was an old town, lots of beautiful old buildings and a fair bit of history. We visited the cemetery (of course we did!) which had a lot of old graves and also the remains of the old church.  

Yesterday morning we went to see the HMAS Sydney II memorial. At 10:30am they have a volunteer guide take you on a tour and explain the memorial and the story of HMAS Sydney II. This was great and we thoroughly enjoyed it. This memorial is probably the best I’ve ever seen, the thought that has gone into every part is amazing. We will do a seperate blog on the HMAS Sydney memorial and the shipwreck.

Looking up towards the memorial

 

After the memorial we went to visit the museum, mainly because they had another section on HMAS Sydney and other shipwrecks in the area.There is no entry fee to the museum as such, they suggest a $5 donation, but it’s a great little museum and we worth it. Went spent a couple of hours there.

Onto other non travel related matters! …… On Monday we were contacted by a reporter from GWN7 News here in WA to ask permission to use some photos from our latest blog. They had seen our photos of Steep Point and wanted to use them in the evenings news bulletin about a missing fisherman in the area.  Secretly a little bit excited that we got contacted😀