Go West, Day 97 – Kununurra

Day 97

Thursday 11th June 2015, 29 degrees (doesn’t change much does it?)

Wyndham to Kununurra

Woody tells me that he has gotten 8 days out of one block of ice in the Techni Ice fridge. That’s pretty good considering that the temperature has been consistently around 30.

He’s raved about the bloody ice box for the whole trip!

The Grotto is a waterfall and swimming hole on the way out of town. There are 140 manmade steps down into the gorge. We take one look at the tiny steps (and no railing) on the cliff edge and shoot through.

The Great Northern Highway becomes the Victoria Highway. Ghost gums are replaced by delicate pink gums. The boabs are ever present, thin, fat, short, tall, single, double and even triple trunked and endlessly fascinating. The Kimberley continues to wow us with its beautiful scenery. I’m sure the locals must be disappointed when they travel elsewhere.

We come over a hill and before us is greenery. First the Dunham and then the Ord river and its hi-tech Diversion Dam. There are crops, we’ve missed crops. We’re in a green tropical town all manicured lawns and palms and boabs of course and the little lake, Lake Kununurra.

Our home away from home is Kimberleyland Caravan Park on the shores of Lily Lagoon and we’re camped behind Penny’s Crew (the mob who thought Wyndham had been abandoned). This town is one of the great surprises of this trip. Why is it not better known?

Kimberleyland Caravan Park, Kununurra, WA

Reflected in the lake is a low pink mountain range known as the Sleeping Buddha. Water birds abound, swamp hens, egrets, darters, bustards and little brown guys they call “Happy Birds”. With a white blaze on their heads and tails they chatter and play constantly under the caravans.

Sleeping Buddha, Kununurra, WA

There is a park beside us called Celebrity Tree Park and each tree is described and has been planted by someone famous. It is a peaceful park with views across the lake and to the domes of Hidden Valley National Park behind the town. The famous planters come from diverse walks of life from author Mary Durack to racing driver Peter Brock.

Celebrity Tree Park

“There’s not much to see” says the young girl at the Info Centre. We take her meagre advice and visit Kelly’s Knob lookout above the town and get a lay of the land. She couldn’t tell us where historic Ivanhoe Crossing is as she hadn’t heard of it. Not surprisingly we find it on Ivanhoe Road just as the sun is setting and there are folks fishing with disregard for crocs and the water is brimming across the spillway. Of course, it is prohibited to drive on it these days and a huge boulder blocks the causeway.

Ivanhoe Crossing
Kununurra from Kelly’s Knob

In the evening the Sleeping Buddha glows pink while we have drinks overlooking the lake with Penny’s Crew. A large bustard strides back and forth catching insects in the camp light. Paradise found again.

Accom: $39.00

Travelling Kms: 101Kms

Lily Lagoon at sundown
Map Source: WikiCamps

4 thoughts on “Go West, Day 97 – Kununurra

  1. There goes the answer to my question that on I posed in your next post – my bad, I didn’t read your posts in order. Looking at your Wiki map you really did a good job of seeing WA, and I’m pleased that you seemed to have done it all at a reasonable time of year. A month earlier and it would have been awfully hot up here, and travellers that do the WA coast late in the dry season(September/October) travelling north to south get blown to bits by the strong spring winds.

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