This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

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2004 Travels April 9


It was a lovely, pleasant day with blue skies and a cooling breeze.

Good Friday, and the caravan park was full. I was so pleased I’d thought to book ahead – meant we had a decent site, rather than being squeezed in a corner, as some were. The caravan park in town was also booked out for Easter.

John met up with BH, who we’d met at Streaky Bay and with whom we would be bowling. They were in this caravan park, too.

John and B went off fishing together, from the town jetty. John caught enough trevalley and mackerel for a couple of feeds. Success at last!

At 3pm,  we went to the bowls club to practice, for a couple of hours. It was a tricky green!

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2004 Travels April 8


Today’s was a rather short move.

It was a pleasant drive, following the coast.

We stopped and had a quick look at Smoky Bay. It was a small place, but looked pleasant enough, with a foreshore caravan park that looked alright. It was for sale – could be a decent business, given the way this coast seemed to be going ahead.

Noted this as another place for a possible future stay. There was a jetty that would offer fishing points.

We were already booked into the Shelly Beach Caravan Park. I had decided that we would prefer not to stay in the centre of this town, and Shelly Beach was about 3kms south  of town.

It was a lovely caravan park, for these parts, apparently being developed from a formerly run down place. It was a FPA park, too, so after discount we paid $17.50 a night. Not bad, over Easter.

We had a nicely shaded site, in an area of the park that was irregularly laid out, with sites tucked amongst bushes. The bathrooms were unusual – a number of unisex shower and toilet rooms – like ensuites – but shared by a few sites. They were clean and spacious.

There were quite high sand dunes between the park area and the sea – Bosanquet Bay. There was a long beach, for walking along, although the sand was a bit soft.

After we set up and had lunch, drove back into town and went to the Information Centre. As well as getting materials about the area, we bought six polo shirts – they were having a sale. For $15 each, bought ones that would be birthday presents for my offspring, one for John, and three for me. One of mine had  a Googs Track insignia, another was Nullarbor logo-ed , and the other referenced the “bugger” Toyota ads on TV, with a little logo on the pocket plus the word. It certainly was not one I could wear on all occasions, but I did love those ads – and the sentiment was frequently very appropriate for camping scenarios!

Stocked up for Easter, too.

Back at camp, we walked the path across the dunes, then walked for about an hour along the beach. That was a real workout for the calf muscles, in the soft sand.

There was a huge bull ant on our outside table. Very aggro it was too. I made a mental note to keep a careful eye out for its mates.

Texted our whereabouts to V and K and received replies. V and family were at Bonnie Doon for Easter. K said that grand daughter loved her “grandma jumper”.

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2004 Travels April 7


Before John got up, this morning, I walked for an hour or so, along the bike path alongside the bay. There was less wind, but it was still a bit cool.

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The bay at Streaky Bay

Eventually, we drove to Hallys Beach. It was still not a great day for fishing, but John was determined. We were a bit late getting out there, so the tide was already going out.

There were some big waves, and lots of rips. John lost the rigs off both the surf rods, plus the smaller rod! It was more likely to have been from weed entanglement than from fish that got away. He lost too much line to be able to continue fishing. I thought the salmon must have departed at the same time as the warmer weather!

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Lone surfer

This was our last day at Streaky Bay. We agreed that we could have stayed quite a while longer. We will return!  Great place, pleasant little town, and at this time of year, not teeming with holiday makers.

We left a phone message for L to forward our mail tomorrow, to Ceduna PO.

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2004 Travels April 6


There had been a real change of weather overnight. Today was quite chilly, with a very strong wind and even a little rain.

John had intended to fish today, but the weather was too poor for it, so he spent some time working on his fishing gear, then back onto the phone/internet thing – again!

After lunch, we drove to buy some oysters and King George whiting, to cook for tea.

Later in the afternoon, drove the Cape Bauer circuit, to take in the features we hadn’t seen the other day.

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Just some vegetation by a path, but it appealed to me

The oyster entree and cooked whiting were absolutely delicious, for tea.

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2004 Travels April 5


It was a very hot day.

Having yesterday made a gesture towards my wish to do some “tourist stuff”, John spent yet another day on the phone/internet hook up problem. This involved phone calls to Telstra – long ones!

I walked up to the shops and posted a card to grand daughter, and paid the Telstra bill at the Post Office.

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Beach in front of the caravan park

I went for a short walk in the other direction, away from the town, along a rather interesting-looking cycle/walk path that follows the southern shore of the bay around. It was too hot to walk far along here, though part of me was wishing we’d bought the bikes on this trip.

We had a talk with two Trakmaster owners we found in the park. Both had Nullarbor models. One of these had a number plate only three digits “younger”  than ours – from 1997. It was the first full van Trakmaster had built, and was much more travelled than ours, being on the road most of the time. I was envious – not of the van, but of the almost full time travel!.

The guy from the van behind us caught lots of salmon today, out at Hallys Beach, reached from the Cape Bauer loop drive.

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2004 Travels April 4


Had a lazy morning and early lunch, then went for a drive – south to Point Labatt, to see the Australian sea lion colony that lives there. This was unique as the only permanent mainland sea lion colony in Australia.

Sea lions have similarities to seals, but also key differences, one of which is sheer size.

We went out of town and south on the Flinders Highway, then took the turn off to Calca, then the Point Labatt road, before we reached Sceale Bay. Once off the highway, the roads were unsealed, but firm and fine to drive on.

Baird Bay is a strange shaped inlet that extends north from Venus Bay in a long, narrow, shallow finger of water. West of Calca, we travelled along its northern edge for a way, with it seeming to be almost level with the road. Then the Point Labatt road ran south on also a narrow finger of land, between Baird Bay on one side and the Southern Ocean on the other. In places we passed sand dunes, other parts were scrubby or semi bare. Again, in places, we ran very close to the shore of Baird Bay.

We were surprised, and rather horrified, to come across a land subdivision on the way to Point Labatt, stretching from the shore of Baird Bay, to the ocean, across scrub and sand dune terrain. They were large acreage lots, but I would have thought the environment there was pretty fragile,  and with problems to do with water sourcing and waste disposal. I guessed they did things differently in SA!

Point Labatt faces west, onto the Southern Ocean. Here, the high cliffs of that part of the coast, have been eroded back to form rock shelves and platforms, and small bays with little sandy crescents of beach.

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Sea lions on rocks below the lookout point

One views the sea lions from a lookout point on the cliffs, high above the small beach and rocky areas where they live. There is no access down to their level, which was probably a good thing for both the sea lions and people. Binoculars were a distinct advantage, as was the zoom lens on my new digital camera – a feature of it I’d not used before.

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Big bull male, and others

There was a mix of a few big bull males, several females -smaller – and younger, part-grown ones. There was not a great deal of activity from them! They definitely gave the impression that their life was all about just lying about, sunbaking.

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There was the occasional ungainly waddle, from one point to another – clearly, their thick layers of fat were heavy to haul around on land. There was some movement from the water onto the rocks.

Despite the lack of action, watching them for a while was strangely interesting.

The males were distinguishable, apart from size, by the cream colour on the back of their necks.

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Sea lion tracks above the tide line

We tore ourselves away from the sea lion show, retraced our way back to the Sceale Bay road, and turned west again, to visit that hamlet. There was a small, basic caravan park there; the majority of the houses seemed to be holiday ones rather than full time dwellings. Apart from wonderful views to sea, there was little to recommend the place.

We followed a roundabout route that took us to Smooth Pool, The Granites and High Cliffs – all scenic landmarks on what was a rugged and spectacular stretch of coastline.

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Smooth Pool

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High Cliffs

Unfortunately, we really did not have enough time to walk about and properly explore those features.

It was almost dark when we got back to camp.

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2004 Travels April 3


It was quite hot today.

John slept in a bit, so we were a little late getting going. Then John had to get fuel – $1.02cpl.

Eventually set off to tackle the Cape Bauer Loop drive. This mostly unsealed road took one out along the southern edge of the bay to areas of cliffs and dramatic coastal rock scenery facing the Southern Ocean.

We only managed to get part of the way around. though, and had to cut short some of the stops at assorted lookout points.

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Streaky Bay coastal scenery

Then had to double back in order to be on time for the bowls in the afternoon, that John was determined we should attend.

Bowls was a Charity Day (well, afternoon) event. We had a pleasant time.

We had noticed a number of housing estate developments around Streaky Bay. It seemed the area was developing quite quickly. There were some blocks available with great views over the bay. I imagined the prices would be as stunning as the views!