Elephant Cove, Denmark, Western Australia.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

What Worked For Two.

I was asked how the van work for 2 people so thought I'd write it down as I think about it.

It worked good, as I knew it would.  But I was a bit surprised that Hubby had thrown his work bag in to take and when I asked why he said because it had everything he would need in it.  What!!  "My van has anything you might need Mister!"  Now we're talking a big bag here, one that we had to keep moving out of the way...
Because anything we might need is already in the van!

So how did things go...
The Bed.
He made this to be used as a single but to be able to be pulled out and used for two.  It was easy enough to pull out and push back in even when we were both in the van with the doors shut.  After the first night he didn't want to put it back as a single but the second morning after sleeping in it I said I would.  He seemed a bit surprised at how easy it was   We swapped sides after the first night as he is taller than me and needed more leg room and him being in the centre of the van stopped his feet touching the toilet but I could still get in and out easily.

The Toilet. 
We still took this but I *knew* I wasn't going to be using it when he was in the the van with me.  I mean, who does that!  Lots of people apparently but not this little black duck.
Because we did have more stuff with the 2 of us it also wasn't as easy to put up the privacy curtain so duing the day it was easier to call into public loos along the way and at night it was less stressful to get out of the warm safe van into the cold dark night to pee. 
It was used sometimes though as the composting toilet at the campground left a bit to be desired.   I just asked him to go and check out the beach conditions and he wandered off for a smoke.

Toilet Bag.
This is the bag that I made to hide/carry the toilet.  It worked great when we had to get to the car battery as it was just a matter of lifting it up and out then back in again.  And pulled up you couldn't see that there was a toilet there at all. 

We planned to do coffee and cook meals outside the van but on a couple of occasions when it was raining we did need to use the stove in the van.  With the bed as a single there was plenty of room to pull the little side table down to sit the stove on and with the window open a little bit it was (I hope!) safe enough.  We just sat on the bed to eat.

I have seen the table that I want to get but when I went to buy one the shop didn't have any so that was going to be a problem.  Luckily we found one at the campground that had been left behind.  With 2 people the little table that I have out the back of the van is not good enough.  I need to get a proper one before we go away again.

I have a solar light set up near the front of the van, it can be reached from the front and the back and work really well but is not bright enough to read by.  Hubby has put a battery in the back of the van and given me a 12vold light with a long cord.  This can be used in or out of the van and is bright enough to read by.  The battery it is connected to is charged by a small solar panel 

The van runs well and we had no trouble at all with it.  Except after rough corrugated roads when the battery connections came loose.  The first time I hear that ominous *click* we were out the middle of nowhere with no Mobile phone reception and not many cars.  If I was by myself it would have taken a coffee and some thinking about what to do. Hubby just *hummffed*  pulled out the esky, lifted out the loo (in it's great little bag!) and pushed the connection back in place.  This happened a couple more times before he tried banging the box under the car and had the connection connect that way.  Easier than pulling stuff out even though that wasn't hard.  He is going to have a look at it when he has time and see if it needs tightening or a new wire or what.  In the meantime I will keep away from rough corrugated roads but if I do shake it loose it is something that I can fix.

Had the husband so I wasn't scared at all.

I will come back and update this as I think of things but there I don't think there was anything that didn't work.

Friday, May 27, 2011


We left Starvation Bay Saturday morning and drove into Hopetoun, checked into the house to pick up a fishing rod then went off to catch tea.

Hopetoun is a small coastal town around 7 hours drive from where we live.  Hubby sometimes works in the area and over the years has been down there many times but this was my first proper visit.

We had the opportunity to stay in the house where he stays while working down there and I was expecting a small holiday shack but was pleasantly surprised when we pulled into the driveway of this...
We were only staying there the one night and as luck had it we had the place to ourselves.

Hubby was told about this place when he bought bait.  It is out of town a bit but supposed to have BIG fish.  I don't know about that but we did catch a couple of feeds from here.  It is a lagoon type pool that used to be a part of the ocean but has been separated from the sea for quite a number of years.  There is a beach behind the hill to the left but because of a sandbar the water no longer gets into this pool.

The hill in the background is East Mt Barren but because of work being done in the area the road in is closed so we couldn't get to have a look.  According to the sign it should be open in 18months but as it doesn't say when it started I don't know when that will be.  Hopefully it will be open before Summer as we will be going back down then.

They've had a lot of rain down in the area and while we were there we were going to go fishing in a river that you get to by driving down John Forrest Road.  Unfortunatley the bridge we needed to cross over was flooded out.  Hubby wanted to drive over it anyway but Wanda didn't want to get her seats wet so we turned around and went looking for somewhere else.

I *possibly* saw some sea lions. 
There are some rocks a fair way out from the land but you can see them and Hubby said that the sealions are quite often out there.  *Someone* had left the binoculars at home but with a bit of squinting a couple of maybe moving black dots could be seen. 
I WILL get to see one of these things one day and these ones are closer to the shore than the ones up at GreenHead.

Even though it was wet and windy and there were a few places I didn't get to see because of the wet conditions I think Hopetoun is a pretty little coastal town well worth the long drive.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Starvation Bay. WA.

Well I came home from work on Thursday, had a quick shower, shoved some clothes into a bag and put some food into the esky.  Then we was off!!  So easy and it saved us a few hours travelling on the Friday.

Hubby drove and the intention was to leave here, drive 'til he got tired and then pull over somewhere and sleep.  He travels the road we were taking quite often so knew of a few places suitable to stop and the one he picked was not far from Harrismith, across the road from the turnoff to Lake Grace.  No facilities of course but a decent distance off the road.
Then it was just a matter of sleeping, waking up and taking off again knowing we were nearly halfway there.  We stopped at Lake King for a coffee and something to eat and it was so easy to do with the way the van is setup.  Back into the car and kept going until we got to Starvation Bay.

Starvation Bay is about a half hours drive from Hopetoun, called Starvation Boat Harbour in the map book but we call it Starvation Bay.  It is a lovely spot on the coast with different areas for tents, caravans and vans/trailes.  There are composting toilets but no fresh water.  Fireplaces but you need to take your own wood.  Lots of different areas depending on which direction the wind (and rain) is coming from.  I really liked it.
The sign going in says that there are fees but we didn't see anywhere to leave them and no-one came collecting.  They may be a seasonal thing.

Once there we had a quick drive around, Hubby found a spot that would give some protection from the wind and we put up a tarp because it looked like it was going to rain.  
Friday Night Camp.

We found this table at another campsite so moved it over to ours.  It looks like it was left behind because it was broken.  The legs have been taped to some sticks to keep it upright.  It worked for us though and we left it for someone else to use.

After getting set up and having a coffee we went exploring.  The water is not very far from the camping areas and there are a few paths leading down to the beach.  The beach in front of the area we camped in is white sand, clear water and mostly calm while we were there but that depends on the wind direction.  Walk East to the point and the beach to the South is covered in rocks.
Some flat, with little crabs running and hiding under them.   Some not so flat...

And some funny shape ones.

 Some of the beach is covered in shells.
Some of the rocks are black and look like molten lava.  In places it looks like it has flowed over and through the other rock.

I found all the different rocks really interesting and though you had to be careful on the ones close to the water it was a fun filled couple of hours *exploring* them.

Down the far end of the beach there was a massive rock off the point.  It was an *island rock* and the water running between that and the coastline on Saturday morning was a crystal clear aqua.and so inviting it just made you feel like jumping in.  The wind and smooth rock walls was a deterant though.  On Sunday when we went back for another look the wind was coming in from a different direction and it was colder and the water was  rough and not so inviting.

We had a great time at Starvation Bay and will come again. 
If anyone is ever in the area call in for a look and check it out for yourself.  Be aware though that the road going in, Springdale Road, is gravel but not too bad but the road that we turned down to get the the beach,
Southern Ocean Road, was 10min of corrugations.  Not much fun at all but worth the roughness.

If you have been please leave a comment and let me know how you liked it

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Back Window Stickyon Stuff. Take 2.

After a few more tries I managed to get the stuff to stay on the back window.  It works, kinda anyway.  I don't think I'm completely happy with it though and on our *adventure* this weekend gone Hubby says it's not the best.  He says you can't see out of it good enough.  And as you can still see inside the van from out the back I am rethinking the whole thing.

I did buy some other stuff to try but haven't put it on yet.  It is a film of tint stuff, what I wanted to try in the first place but couldn't find an any of the shops I looked in. 

I will report back when I do the changeover.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Adventure. Coming Soon.

Hubby rang fom his work yesterday.  Asked when I'd be home for a few days and suggested that we be off.  On an adventure.  Sure thing says I.

So I need to have the van ready by Thursday night.  That gives me 4 days, 2 and a half of which I will not be home.  And I still haven't managed to get that back window covered.  Or all the supplies replenished. 

I need to cook some meals to freeze and take, might do that this evening.  Check that I have drinks frozen ready to go in the esky.  Get some clothes washed which means I will need to work out how to fix the washing machine.  And all me other jobs done...

Best be out there adoing methinks.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Back Window Stickyon Stuff. Take 1.

I know that there are lots of things that I cannot do.  I know my limitations and work within them.
But I'm not completely useless. 
Or am I?
I didn't like the way that anyone could see right into the back window of the van and thought about putting up a net curtain but ended up buying some stuff that just sticks on with water.  Hubby made the comment that he supposed that's another job for him but I said of cause not, I wanted to do it.  It wasn't going to be hard.

Well I have been out there for more than an hour trying to get this stuff on the window and to stay there.  Five attempts and I still can't get it.

I have come inside for a bit but will try again this evening.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Clean and Ready To Go.

Wanda is clean and dustfree again and ready to go. 

When I told Hubby about it filling up with dust and maybe it needing new seals he asked if I'd shut the door properly.  Could that have been the reason?  I dunno, never thought to stop and check the doors were shut tight. Hopefully I am dumb and it's not the seals.  Oh, and apparently you should turn fans on or something and it pressurisers the inside and stops a lot of dust coming in???  Who knew...not me and I still don't understand what I should have done.  I am going to get him to write it down for me. 
It's like I need a *Vanning for Dummies* book.

The daughter borrowed it on the weekend and went exploring and apparently it makes a clicking noise when it gets up to 102kph.  
I have never heard it as I am a slow, cruisy explorer. 
How do you hear odd sounds when you're driving anyway.  Isn't that what the music is for...