AWOL Around Australia… Across The Bight, The Long Way. Part 1.

Just following our noses…

A few sandy sections around the back of the salt lake, in front of the sand dunes. However as I’m lazy I just hit them with a bit more momentum rather than let my tyres down further.

Then the track headed up into the dunes. Down went the tyres.

Getting soft now, so down some more.

End result was worth it.

Gang.

 

We wound on, and after a while stumbled across a perfect campsite, just off the beach. Protected by the small dunes, whilst looking out over the Star Wars variety.

Pretty good spot all to ourselves.

The light was good that evening.

This spider came out of the sand long enough to say goodnight.

I staggered out of the tent in time for sunrise over the ocean.

Also, the leftovers from last night’s wildlife party were everywhere to be seen.

We packed up and drove over to the dunes for a closer look.

Nothing apparently to stop you driving up there. However, as I’ve done dune driving before. Plus, perhaps more importantly, these dunes were untouched, this campsite wasn’t on any map or app. It didn’t feel right to be the first hooligan. Dunes are an eco system like any other and a 4×4 isn’t a beneficial part of that. I like some fun driving as much as the next person, but time and place.
Let’s press on.

A morning of dead ends and locked gates to be honest. Have looked at the map last night there seemed at least one good route along the coast to get round to Fowlers Bay. In reality there was way more tracks on the ground than on the map, and many of the tracks on the map either didn’t exist or went nowhere. This just comes with the territory (!) when exploring Australia like this, some days work out great. Some, not so much. You just have to take the rough with the smooth.

So after deciding enough farm tracks and bush bashing for one morning (not to mention a few places that felt like Walter White’s holiday shack) we took the main dirt roads into Fowlers Bay. A shack community on a pretty picturesque bay.

A group of indigenous kids were having a day trip, playing on the dunes.

From here we tried our luck again. Cutting through to an area know as Mexican Hat.

Even baked dry in the middle of summer… Anyone who’s familiar with the black mud knows how that plays out with a bit of moisture.

This worked better, one Mexican hat.

 

We saw a pick-up on top of one of the sand dunes here. Too far away for a greeting, but we would see those guys a couple more times today. As it would seem we were the only ones out here.

Following tracks out to cliff tops and beaches.

Nothing really grabbed us for a campsite, but these were pretty picturesque dead ends.

It was early enough to roll the dice once more. We took some more main dirt roads inland, a historic school  site. Of which were seemed to be an abundance of out here.

 

Then back out to the coast. More trails, and then a great campsite! In behind the dunes. I stopped and continued on foot just in case it was worth dropping tyres pressures again and heading up through the dunes. Well I wouldn’t normally turn down a campsite like the first one, but even better was on the other side.

Looking back to the first campsite, pretty nice.

So down again with the tyres, right down, 12 in the front and 22psi in the rear. So over we went easily.

But this is betterer!

 

Another perfect campsite. Again not on any map, but shows some of days it is worth persevering. The only other people we saw? Yep, the Nissan pick up from back down the coast.

I tried a bit of a fish. But apart from an inquisitive small stingray, no one was interested. Two fine days of coastal exploration, in areas I haven’t really seen anyone else publicise before, meant we were feeling pretty special.

Yesterday we saw no one after we left the highway, most of the time not even tyre marks to follow. Today being closer to the community of Fowlers Bay, there was a bit more interaction with other actual humans, but after exploring the east coast, this was a reminder of what the proper Australian 4×4 experience is. In my book anyway.

Stoked we found a great camp for the second night. Tomorrow will be a different day as we traverse the main road through the indigenous lands we couldn’t get a permit for, but that’s cool. We’ve got to make some miles at some time.

Thanks for reading.

 

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