August 25, 2012…Kununurra

Our goal is to cross over into Western Australia today!  We were up and out by 8am!  We slept pretty soundly considering we were camped only 20 meters or so from the bitumen, with the road trains hurtling their loads down the highway for much of the night.  It is going to be another scorcher of a day today, and we decide to punch out as many kilometers as we can.  We fill up at every petrol opportunity along the way and, at times, it feels like that's all we seem to be doing.  The station fill ups give me a chance to remove my helmet, stretch and refresh… ahhh…just long enough to attack another 200 k's or so!  I usually ask for a cup of ice at the stops too.  Ice is like GOLD!  The stations are reluctant to give it up and usually only give you about 10 cubes or so.  Hey 10 cubes will do the trick!  Now if I purchase some cold water I can make those cubes last a lot longer.  I can get another 2 hours of chilled water sucking pleasure as I ride through this raw and beautiful countryside!…ha ha ha

Ta Dah!!!  We finally have crossed into Western Australia.  We pull up at the State Border Agriculture stop.  "Do you have anything to declare?", firmly states the perky blonde border agent!  "Yes we have some honey, there is only a little left do you want it?", I say.  "Yes!  Do you have any fruit, plant or animal samples that you have collected along the way?", the perky blonde agent asks with authority.  She then cracks a huge smile, "I guess that you do not have the space to carry samples?" she realizes!  "No…we can only carry what is absolutely necessary", I reply.  We chat for a minute and then open up the panniers for her to peer into.  "Looks good, ride safe", she states.  "Oh yeah don't forget to turn your clocks back 1 1/2 hours!", the border agent calls out as we are securing our helmets.  Wow, bonus, Kev and I look at each other we can ride a little further today.

The landscape changed yet again…I always get a kick out of that when you cross state lines!  The Kimberley Region of Western Australia extends from the rugged sandstone formations in the northern areas down to the dusty red sand dunes of the Great Sandy Desert in the south.  I was absolutely captivated by the wild west feel of this rugged area.  Although dry, the rock formations were very much alive with fiery reds, burning browns, oranges and yellows.  The creamy circular tufts of spinifex grasses dotting the roadside reminded me of sphere like crew cuts and caused me to chuckle from time to time.  Patchwork portions of the sweeping landscape had been burnt.  It was harsh, dramatic, chard, and beautiful.  Spooky, old, gnarled and twisted bottle trees began to emerge.  These trees were fantastic!  Really they could have come right out of a spooky witch scene or Harry Potter forest.   It was great to be on a sweeping road again and for the next bonus 1 1/2 hours we soaked in the countryside wonders as we rode towards Kununurra.  We decided to pay for a caravan site and grab a shower.  Several days of sweaty sticky heat and mozzie repellant was starting to get to me!  

Welcome to Western Australia!

A bottle tree and termite hills stand out in the burnt outback...

One very large bottle tree!