Meekatharra – Wiluna – Well 2a – 266 kms
We left Wiluna, a charmless place, about midday and started the Stock Route.
The road was predictably bumpy but manageable and we started to get the first washouts, nothing too difficult. We stopped early at Well 2a – a ruin.
Well 2a – Windich Springs – 110km.
Well we only managed 110kms today. You know how you think you are prepared for everything, done the research, prepared the vehicle, made contingency plans and so on??? Well, we expected corrugations, rocks, sand, washouts but no-one told us about the damn trees! I thought this was meant to be a desert.
Boris has 2 weak points, his height and his departure angle. Well both have taken their toll – and it’s only day 2 on the CSR. Yes, we now have a small(ish) hole patched up with a Sainsbury’s shopping bag and duct tape. Mulga trees line the track and are hard to avoid, but one had a small sharp branch that connected at the wrong time at the right angle.
Boris is taking a bit of a beating.
My wine supply is coming in handy. As we have the luxury of loads of storage room and a decent payload I have managed to stash 44 litres of wine on board. Remember, we can’t really restock for 6 weeks. One cannot buy cask wine in the Kimberley and bottles are out of the question.
We topped up with water at Well 6. This is a lovely spot complete with beautiful river gums, and would be a brilliant place to camp, but the timing was wrong for us.
Windich Springs – Well 12- 185kms.
We left our lovely camping spot at Windich Springs early and had a long day. Loads of washouts, rocks and we found that Boris can handle quite a degree of tipping with out actually tipping over! A few hair raising, white knuckle moments.
Boris is now sporting a ding at the back where one washout was just too steep. We had to do a bit of road building with rocks today.
We seem to be averaging 25kph with a top speed of 40kph.
Well 12 – Durba Spring – 149kms.
We are starting to see some sand dunes now but nothing too difficult. Just need some oomph and occasionally low-range.
After 2 long days we decided to have a rest day at Durba Spring. It’s a fab spot camp with loads of river gums and flat grassy areas. We washed our clothes and our hair.
The local indigenous rangers were here holding a training camp. They gave us some information booklets and we were really impressed with this worthwhile program – really positive outcomes for the environment, the community and individual pride. Please support this program if you get the opportunity.
Durba Spring – Lake Disappointment – 106kms.
Feeling refreshed we headed to Lake Disappointment over too many sand dunes to count. Lawrence commented that Boris seemed to bouncing more than usual. How the hell can you tell? – I thought, as I was being thrown all the place like a balloon at a 3yr old birthday party.
Anyway, he was right and it seemed that our back shock absorbers had given up. We’d replaced the front ones before setting off and had spares, but apparently the front and back are not interchangeable – who knew? Not me.
The upshot is that we camped that night at Lake disappointment, which does not disappoint. It’s beautiful and vast and completely devoid of life. It was weird to wake up to no birdsong.
Lake Disappointment – Georgia Bore – 127kms
We realised that we needed to head to Newman for repairs and phoned our chums in Cowaramup to get the right shockies sent to Capricorn Roadhouse. Fortunately Adam knows bloke who knows a bloke and it should be freight free – maybe a carton of beer.
Longish day to Well 23 to pick our pre-paid fuel and then back Georgia Bore for an overnight stop. The corrugations have now started and Oh Boy, the stories have not been exaggerated. I wouldn’t mind if they did something useful like shake off your belly fat, instead they just rattle the fillings out of your teeth.
Georgia Bore – Newman – 446kms
Headed down the Talawana track, nothing too difficult. It’s fairly well graded gravel road. From there we decided to take the road via Jiggalong community – BIG mistake. Our map was completely wrong and the GPS wasn’t exactly accurate, so after some roads that didn’t exist, some goat tracks, and some circles we found a mining road heading in the right direction – hallelujah! 9 ½ hours today. A cold beer and hot shower made it all better.
The savvy amongst you will have realised early on in this post that we were headed to civilisation – as there’s no internet on the CSR!
Will report on the repairs in the next few days. We’ll be in Newman until Thursday.