We left Streaky Bay and now on our way across the Nullarbor. To break up our journey, Grant played the Nullarbor Links which is the longest 18-hole golf course in the world. Spanning 1,365 kilometres with one hole in each participating town or roadhouse along the Nullarbor Plain and starting/finishing at either Kalgoorlie or Ceduna, each hole is pretty rugged to say the least (except at the new Kalgoorlie Golf course which was the only course to have real grass)! The course had many obstacles which made it all interesting – a crow which was renowned for stealing balls (yes he took off with ours too) at Nullarbor Roadhouse, rain which turned the ground to a slippery orange/brown mud at Mundrabilla (yes the rain gods are back in action), fairways which were full of holes made by wombats (or jurassic sized rabbits) at Nundroo Roadhouse, and the ground was so hard that you would break tees by the handful.
Grant improvised his tees using dried grass, bottle tops, and anything else that we could find! If you pass this way, the golf is a lot of fun and forces you to take breaks and stop at many of the small roadhouses which normally you probably wouldn’t stop at. One place we really loved playing golf at was the Fraser Range Sheep Station, located in between Balladonia and Norseman in WA. The scenery was spectacular and you can also camp there, so if you travel the Nullarbor and don’t even play the golf, it would be a great place to stay.
As we travelled further west, the rain continued. We were originally told that when it started, it was the remnants of Cyclone Yasi (that was the info at Nullarbor Roadhouse), but the longer it went on, we knew it was just “us”! But all was not lost – as we headed up to Kalgoorlie, it was sun, sun, and more sun, with a beautiful 35º waiting for us. Whilst there, Grant completed his round of golf, but we also managed to view the famous open cut mine, the Superpit, which is absolutely amazing, operating 24/7 and now down to a depth of about 600m. We also visited the Mining Hall of Fame which included going underground, and watching a gold pour. They even allowed the tourists to hold (but unfortunately not keep) the finished product 🙁
Kalgoorlie’s gold history goes back to 1893 when Paddy Hannan (or is it Hanan??) stumbled across some gold. Before too long, word got out and a goldrush to the region occurred, resulting in the area around Kalgoorlie, Coolgardie, and Norseman being referred to as the “Golden Mile”.
As we were packing up in Kalgoorlie, it was raining (grrrr, it’s not funny anymore!). It was shortlived (woo hoo) as we headed south to Esperance where we would now spend some time exploring the regions south and south east of Perth, as there are many national parks, wine regions, and beaut beaches to explore – with a side tour to Hyden for the famous Wave Rock thrown into the mix.
Grant & Linda.
|Kms Travelled Total 3,332