We had a long way to go so there wasn't time for seeing any more of Dalwallinu than I had with my morning walk so after loading the freezers back onto the truck we were back on the road heading North. The plan was to make as few stops as possible and get to Doolgunna around 4pm.
So we drove. And drove. And drove. Well Hubby did, I was the passenger so I got to look at the scenery and point out the herds of wild goats, the emu, the eagle...Things like that. I also got to read a bit. I think this could be a long boring drive for the drivers and there are people who do it all the time. In trucks a lot bigger and slower than the one we were in.
We passed through a few towns, Wubin, Paynes Find, Mt Magnet, Cue...but didn't have time to stop at any of them except we had to stop at Meekatharra to refuel but from there we didn't have very far to go. Just another couple of hours.
One day we will do a proper road trip and go back to all these places and take time to explore the area.
We finally turned off the highway and into the dirt road that led to Doolgunna Homestead. Now that was a rough ride in the truck. We had to take it real slow but it still rattled everything.
Then we were there. D was the bloke in charge of the camp and a mate of ours so we reported to him and he gave us a choice of places to stay. In a tent at their camp area or in the accommodation area 100metres away. The rooms would be warmer, they were close to a kitchen. The bathrooms were there...Hard choice but we chose a room.
Below is their camp area. The Geologist sleeps in the mobile home and the other workers have a room in the shed. They cook in the MH and one end of the shed has a room with a TV and, now, the lounge and the 2 freezers that we took up. They have electricity from a generator that runs on petrol and they refill each morning. They seem to have unlimited power though with 4 laptops, a fridge, a freezer, now 2 Engels, lights etc.
These people work for a mining company and their job is to take samples of the dirt in different areas to see if it is worth the mine drilling for gold. There is a team and they take it in turns to fly in and fly out. There were 4 men there while we were there but 1 was a temporary, a young bloke there for a month to see if he wants to become a geo.
The homestead house has it's own power supply coming from solar panels and a wind turbine and doesn't have much to do with the mine blokes.
There were 8 or 10 rooms in the accommodation block, 4, or 5, running down each side of the building and a bathroom was at one end. The bathroom had a toilet and shower for the women and another lot for the men with a communal room in between with troughs in. There was a kitchen room at the other end.
A few of the rooms on the other side had workers in them from a different camp to the one we were involved with but we had our side to ourselves. These rooms are also let out to the prospectors that come up to the station to hunt for gold. There were 2 caravans here and 1 lot had been there for 6 months. They had found a bit of gold but come up here regularly.
We were told that the rooms were $10 a night but I am not sure if that is per person or per room as we didn't pay, it was covered by the mine we were doing the pickup for.
The walls were cement bricks with different rock embedded in them. Absolutely beautiful. And thick so they made the rooms quite warm. I think we would have been cold if we had of chosen the tent!
Below are just a few photos of the walls.I loved the look.
These rooms are also let out to the prospectors that come up to the station to hunt for gold. There were 2 caravans here and 1 lot sometimes stays for up to 6 months. They had found a bit of gold and come up here regularly.
After we were settled in and I set up my coffee making area we went back over to their camp and talked about the load we were picking up and made plans for the next day, Saturday. We didn't have to worry about cooking as these blokes were going to look after us while we were there. And they sure did, We had a couple of lovely evening meals made by N.. After he had finished his day out in the field he would come back, shower and cook. Brilliant meals, fish one night, marinated chicken the next, made with some of the meat that was in the Engels that we took up and vegies they had in their other freezer. It seems like they eat pretty good even though they are miles from civilization.
We were in bed by 8 as we needed to be ready to leave here at 6am on Saturday so they could show us a spot to do a bit of metal detecting ourselves.
Most of Saturday was spent looking for gold, getting lost, watching other people look for gold. Another early night and up early early on Sunday to load the truck before we left.
These bags are full of smaller bags that are full of dirt. They are taken to Perth and tested to see if the area that they came from has gold in it. There was a pile of other stuff that we had to load by hand as it too needed to be taken back to Perth but we were on the road by 9am.
These Sturt Desert Peas were growing near one of the sheds.
These are Pink and Grey Galahs. They came in in the evening and camped out in the trees. I thought that as I walked towards them that they would all fly up in the air and it would look real cool but they didn't. They must be used to people coming and going as they didn't seem fussed at all.
We didn't get to check out a lot of the area so I am hoping that I can come back on another trip. There are 3 drivers that will be doing these trips though so I will only be able to go if Hubby does the drive over a few days when I am not working.
That might be next week or it might be months away.