After our last coffee at the homestead, we packed up and bid farewell to Yardie Creek Caravan Park. We headed back down the coast towards Carnarvon. We stopped briefly in Carnarvon to take the dogs for a walk and a wee break.
We saw a group of young indigenous fellas jumping off a bridge and swimming near a housing estate in town, and we decided it would be a good place to walk. When we got up there though, Bender didn't want to walk over the bridge - it was a weird bridge, an old railway bridge which seemed to be a drawbridge. It freaked him out. Anyway we were surrounded by the young guys, they were most interested in Barbie.
I suppose I should explain a bit here. Greyhounds seem to have a different reputation amongst country dwelling Aboriginal people than they do amongst urban folks. We live quite close to a train station, and often there are young Aboriginal guys hanging around the train station, the shops, or the nearby park who see Barbie and I stroll by. They always say 'hey, roo-dog! get 'im a good feed of roo.." Most kangaroos would be no match for a savvy Greyhound, that's for sure. Anyway it's happened so often that I have the idea there are at least some Greyhounds being used to hunt kangaroos in outback Australia.
Back to our stroll in Carnarvon...the now familiar "hello roo dog" was voiced as they all came in for a pat. They were less sure of Bender, but as Bender stayed calm some of them patted him as well. After a lot of questions about our "roo dog" we went on our way, bundled back into the car and headed towards our camp site in Bush Bay.
By the time we got to Bush Bay the sun was pretty low in the sky. It's a popular fishing spot and a few people were pulling their boats out and leaving by the time we had set up.
The tide was heading out as the sun was going down, so we went for a stroll along the beach. Barbie was being driven crazy by the small, zippy little birds that were on the mud flats hunting. She could only see them when they moved but she really wanted to give chase.
Both the dogs seemed to enjoy the walk.... and then we went back to cook dinner - but there was a huge problem - the gas hose for the stove had sprung a leak. No cooking for us! We had to eat the mangoes that they had given us up in Exmouth for dinner. We didn't really have much food left!
The dogs lying politely on their beds - got a good night's sleep despite being a little hungry. I even munched on some dry pasta - it wasn't particularly satisfying. Next camping trip I think I will bring some 2 minute noodles to eat in case we have issues with the stove again - at least you can chew them more easily dry than pasta.
Barbie woke me up in time to see the sunrise, though Bender didn't seem to want to go anywhere. I took Barbie for a wander around so that she could toilet, and then ran into N and Bender down on the beach - I guess he wanted to come after all!
We packed up as quickly as possible because I was hungry - we stopped at the first roadhouse we came across (which I think was Wooramel Roadhouse, 100ks South of Bush Bay). There was a scraggly little Jack Russell dog there who came trotting over to me and the dogs while N was in the road house getting our food.
We had lunch at Billabong Roadhouse, which has become a favorite of ours, and the lady there remembered us. She said 'wow, quick trip', and chatted to us about her dog - apparently he catches budgies (which are a small Australian native bird) and buries them on his walks. We sat in the shade near the roadhouse and watched her big dog in his backyard. Bender and Barbie were very good, not trying to get over to him or bark at him. He was a big brindle mastiff type dog.
After a fair bit of driving, we pulled over for a break at the rest area at the Murchison River. There is free camping here, and I think if we didn't have a house to stay in at Geraldton, this is where we would drive to on the first day heading North.
This lizard decided to pose for the camera - he was very cute and he wasn't afraid of the dogs at all.
We let Bender offleash as there weren't many people around and the ground was hot - so I thought it would be better for him if he could choose where he put his paws. When I took his leash off he looked around at me, surprised, like he was saying "really?..... thankyou!"
It was just a short drive to Geraldton from the Murchison rest stop, and we stayed again at the house with the neighbouring horse. Bender kept asking to go out the back but he wasn't allowed. We had a great night's sleep, and headed back to Perth the next day.
The kitties both greeted us enthusiastically when we got home, and the dogs passed out. I think they slept for two days straight!
So that's it, our road trip up North with the dogs. Overall pretty successful if I do say so myself!