This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.


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2007 Travels July 24

TUESDAY 24 JULY     MANNING GORGE CAMPGROUND

This morning M and John went off, in the Troopy, to drive and then walk to, the Barnett River Gorge. They had to drive the 7kms back to the Gibb, then east for 29kms, then 5kms on a rather rough track to the bush camping and parking area.

Manning Gorge camp area (Zoom)

The walk to the Gorge was only a km or so. Last trip, we camped in the bush there and did the walk, up over the sandstone ridge and down to the gorge. It was well worth doing. It was not as popular or frequented as some of the other good places along the Gibb, possibly because it was so close to Manning Gorge.

Barnett River Gorge
Down in the Gorge
Gorge wall – like a giant built a stone edging along the top!

I opted to stay at camp. My heel and ankle were both sore, and it was a walk I had done before. I made a damper and cooked it in the camp oven – the first time we had used it on this trip. The damper turned out ok, although I did have the oven a bit too hot.

I enjoyed pottering about camp. The always present crows provided constant entertainment.

Camp ground boab

M and John really enjoyed their walk to the Gorge. They enjoyed the damper, too!

In the early evening, drove up to the Roadhouse and phoned son. I had originally suggested that he try to manage meeting up with us in the northern Kimberley, at Honeymoon Bay. Being a keen fishing person, we thought he’d enjoy going fishing up there. However, he could only manage to get a week of leave, so that would limit how far into the Kimberley he could get. We decided that he would meet us on August 11 at Home Valley Station.

So that would set a time limit on how long we could spend in the section north of the Gibb – about two and a half weeks. That was alright – we had been there before, and it was enough time for M to gain a fair experience of that area.

It would be good to see the offspring again and be able to really assess how he was managing.

Kimberley Rose


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2000 Travels August 10

THURSDAY 10 AUGUST  KING EDWARD RIVER TO BARNETT RIVER GORGE  267kms

I woke to spatter sounds on the roof of the tent – heavy dew? Light rain?

There was misty cloud about and morning mist over the river, which was a different scene  again. The sun behind the mist created some interesting light effects. All yet another type of mood for this beautiful area.

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Morning mist over the King Edward River

We were up at 6am and packed and away at 7.45am.

Churned our way back through the river ford and were soon back on the main Kalumburu road, heading south, then the Gibb River road, heading west. The road was variable, from good to very corrugated, with some bull dust patches and places where rocks outcropped from the road. There were several water crossings but nothing that was any issue.

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King Edward River ford – can be a bit tricky

We did not see much private traffic on the road, but did see several safari tour buses.

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Back on the Gibb River Road

After straightforward travel ,we reached the turnoff to Barnett River Gorge at lunchtime. We followed the track, which seemed to divide a few times. It was not really clear where the camp area was – I thought it was a pretty informal camp place. We found a secluded spot beside a little creek, edged with pandanus and cadjeput. There were lots of mozzies, though. It was a pretty spot and John liked it.

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Camp spot at the Barnett River Gorge area

We did the basic set up, then drove further along what appeared to be the main track, for about 3kms. The track ended in what did look like a place for camping – but not as nice as where we were.

We parked there, then walked upstream, across stony country between loops of the river, following a track marked by varied and creative rock cairns. That took us to the gorge rim. We followed along that for a way, then the track took us down into the gorge.

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Cairns marked the route to the Gorge

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The Barnett River down in its gorge

It was a lovely gorge, with red rock walls. It was quite wide, so there was enough light for a variety of vegetation to grow. There were pools and rapids.

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Down in the Barnett River Gorge

After exploring we had a swim/wash in a pool – extremely pleasant!

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Great place for a swim

This is a little off the main tourist itinerary so there were fewer people about.

It was about 4pm when we headed back. Even the walk back was enjoyable, though we did have to climb up onto the gorge rim again. We then drove back to our camp.

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Kimberley Rose by the walk track

Tea was mushroom and garlic pasta, followed by tinned fruit.

There had been some build up of cloud through the day and thus there was a really deep red sunset. There was a ring around the moon tonight – I was not sure of the significance of this, in these parts though.

There were lots of birds around our camp area. We heard a pheasant coucal call.

Today had been out wedding anniversary – great to be spending it in the Kimberley!