THURSDAY 24 JUNE MULLEWA TO MURCHISON SETTLEMENT 210kms
I had read some tourism promotion material for new drive routes – Outback Pathways – through these parts of WA, and it was this that had given me the idea of going to Mt Augustus this way. From Mullewa north to Gascoyne Junction was being called the Wool Waggon route – because it passed through sheep grazing country. Historically, wool bales were carted over these tracks.
Refuelled at Mullewa – $1.12cpl.
Set out on the road north – the Mullewa Carnarvon road. There was a new iron ore mine at Tallering Peak, so we encountered several big trucks on the road, which was sealed for that distance. After that, it was gravel – wide and mostly fairly smooth, and there was very little traffic.
We were soon into mulga country.
Crossed our old friend, the Greenough River, a bit north of the Tallering Reserve.
We stopped to have lunch at the bridge over the Murchison River. This stream actually rated a bridge; our other watercourse crossings had been floodway type. Even the Greenough River crossing was basically a low causeway over pipes.
We had quite a wander around at the Murchison River – not in any hurry today. There were some holes in an eroded bank area; outside one of these holes was an assortment of little bones, presumably the leavings of the hole’s resident.
Stopped again to have a look around the restored Well 9 on the DeGrey Mullewa Stock Route. This featured a long trough that stock would drink from. It was filled from the underground water table via a bucket and windlass – hand operated. Filling the trough for stock would have been a long and hard task – one bucket at a time!
Today was a wonderfully easy one, after the long one yesterday.
We got into Murchison in the early afternoon.
Murchison Settlement consisted of the Shire offices, a couple of other buildings, and a roadhouse with attached caravan park. Murchison Shire billed itself as the Shire without a town.
Refuelled – $1.35cpl. Some 200kms had seen a rise in fuel price of 23 cents a litre!
The little caravan park was fine. $10 a night. We were the only people there.
After minimal set up – we stayed hitched – we went for the “Botanical Walk” – a 700 metre track around the area. At least they were trying to provide something for the visitor to do.
I was almost better – just a little head congestion left.
We discovered that the roadhouse generator ran all night! Obviously, the settlement was not on the power grid.