Elephant Cove, Denmark, Western Australia.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Margaret River Area. Dec, 2012.

I have been using daughters camera and for some reason the photos on her card will not upload to my computer.  It is a bummer but I can only presume that my (old) card reader doesn't read that card even though it fits in.  And now, some weeks later, I have somehow managed to wipe all photos from this card.  The photos were of the places below, I hadn't posted yet as I was waiting for these photos to be available.  A wasted wait but no matter...

We were down in the Margaret river area end of last year, after Christmas, it was my last outing for 2012.  The main reason for going was to try out the icecreams at Millers but there were a few other things on my list as well. 

The first plan was to take husbands car and camp somewhere overnight and be in the area for at least 2 nights and 2 full days.  Due to time restraints and not being organised right it didn't work out like that and at one stage it looked like it wasn't going to happen at all.  A bit of sooking Some nice wifey words got me what I wanted though I had to be satisfied with leaving here late in the day, camping overnight and having only the 1 day down there.  Next time it will be longer and we will probably give MR a miss.

It ended up that I only had a days notice and we had to take Wanda but luckily she was (just about) ready to go and it didn't take long to get some food together and be off.

I was going to drive the first stint, a bit more than a couple of hours, to CANEBRAKE POOL   where we planned to camp that night.  We still had a bit to go by my directions when husband says "turn onto Sues Road."  That didn't sound right to me but he had read the book so that's where I turned.   He soon said "go 11km then turn right"  So I look at the speedo, get the number and go driving along.   I do look at the speedo a few times but it took that many to realise that it wasn't turning over.  Oops, when do I turn?   Luckily there was a signpost with the road name still attached.  Now this was a gravel road and I think husband had forgotten that Wanda doesn't like gravel roads, especially ones with corrugations.  It was dusty and rough and to top it off she started getting hot.  "Go faster" he says, "you need to get the airflow going"  Ummm, I don't think so, we'll stop for a bit.  "No, we're just about there, keep going"  Now we had checked the water and oil before we left home so we knew that it should still have plenty even though it was a hot day so I did what I was told and kept going and what do you know, the temp gauge went back down to where it should be.    We wanted to camp at CaneBrake Pool but when we found the campground it was packed.  We thought this might be the case, it being small and during holidays and we did have an alternative place in mind but we went down to the pool itself for a look.  It was packed too.  It looked like one main group but they had tables, chairs, floaty things, eskies...spread from one end to the other and 3 people sitting in the small entryway to the water and 4 playing catch right there on the edge as you went in the water itself.   We went back to the car and went exploring instead.  Husband drove.  We eventually ended up at, I think, The Rapids, it was a smaller pool and not as easy to get into though people were there swimming when we got there.   We parked, decided to stay there, Husband fished while I got the table and chairs out.   It was a nice flat area, shady, clean, no toilets but we had our own so no big deal with that.  While there another couple of cars came and started setting up camp as well but for some reason they ended up packing up and leaving.  It was a warm night and we had to sleep with the windows open but there were no mossies and that was just as well.   I have lost the netting that goes up on the back door, I have no idea where it might be so need to have a proper look in the shed and find it.  I was up at 5, went for a walk, came back for coffee, woke husband and we had coffee, packed up and drove to Canebrake Pook for an early morning swim..  There was no one at the water when we arrived but quite a few cars with people camping in the carpark dispite signs saying "No Camping"  At 6.30 am I went in the clean, cool, refreshing, lovey water and had it all to myself as husband sooked out and wouldn't come in.  It was great to swim and soak after the dusty drive and only a quick paddle the day before.  We were leaving by 7am and there was a car load of people unloading tables, chairs and eskies as we were left.  Different people from the day before.  It looks like you need to get there early if you want a spot.

Margaret River.  After my swim husband drove us out of the camping area, we were going into Margaret River to suss out some shops that I wanted to look at.   Well we drove into MR, it was before 7.30am and I must say how surprised I was at how busy it was.  Shops open, cars and people everywhere.  We parked and walked the streets a bit then back to the car to drive and see if we could find the Lions Shed.  We did but it was closed so it is on the list for next time.  In this area though there were a few other secondhand salvage type shops so we went into those.   They were good shops but I cannot remember the names of them.  They are in the same street as the Lions Shed though and easy to find.    Husband bought a single swag -$40.  They had 2 bar fridges there, with the wire racks that I wanted but couldn't get in the new bar fridge that we needed and bought a few weeks before.  Bugger!  They had a lot of things at very reasonable prices.  The other shop in that area was selling old and antique stuff and I scored a nice birdbath, plastic but made to look like old iron.  That was $30 and more than I would usually spend but hubby was there and convinced me to get it.   I'm glad he did.
We then drove south down the Bussel Highway to Witchcliff to check out the Flying Wardrobe  Lots of stuff but we didn't think it was as great as I thought it would be.
After that, turn around and back to MR to the Red Cross op shop.  Going down the road where that was we were surprised that it was so busy but it turned out that their were farmers markets on,,,right next door!   How lucky was I!   The op shop didn't do much for me but wondering around the markets emptied our husbands wallet quite a bit.   We left there around lunchtime, making sure that we limited our eating of fruit and Delish Ice icypoles as we needed to be able to fit in a BigMoo from Millers.  Getting from the markets back onto the Bussle Highway was a bit of a nightmare and I am glad that I wasn't driving.  It highlighted all that husband said about why he didn't want to go to MR and showed why he didn't like the place.  It was horrible and really, do people lose their driving manners once they get there or are they idiots on the road all the time.  There were some dodgy drivers on that road that day.   I supose that with thousands of cars driving through a town crammed with people it would look busy but the traffic on that road was insane and I know that most of them were probably safe drivers but the few that weren't did make it dangerous for the rest of us.  I mean, gosh people, People are allowed to park, they don't need impationt drivers tooting them.  You don't need to double park so someone can get out and read the info board for you, you really shouldn't cross into oncoming traffic to go around someone turning...wait 5 seconds.  I was glad to get out of there.

Once back on the Bussle Highway we headed northish, I needed an icecream to calm my nerves.  I read about Millers Icecream sometime last year and liked the idea that it was made on the property, would be fresh, was natural with no crap added...I decided then that I would go and have a taste.  Husband saw a menu and liked the name MegaMoo  and even though we didn't know at the time what that was it was in our heads to get that.  It turns out it was a taster plate so we each picked a few flavours and sat out in the open and gorged ourselves.  Next time we wont be so piggy and will just have a couple of scoops each.

Other places we went...ummm, I should write things down at the time but here's what I remember.

Chocolate Factory.  Hmmm, I was expecting great things with this but really it's just a place that sells chocolate.  LOTS of chocolate.  It was busy as, hundreds of people all pushing and shoving.  They sell food as well but I always think that places like this take advantage of tourists by being expensive but what do I know.  They may have been reasonably priced, I didn't think so but there were a lot of people eating so I might be out of touch with food prices.  If you have been here let me know what you thought.  We didn't buy anything, no food, no chocolate.   I was hoping to see them making it but there was nothing happening behind the glass wall so we just looked then left.

Silkworm Factory.  On the same road there was a Silkworm Factory.  That only had a few other people there when we arrived though more did come while we were there.   This was interesting.  A front area full of things made from silk.  Clothing, hats, bags,   There was a talk about how they grow the silkworms, send them to Cambodia for the silk to be harvested and made into the products and sent back here to be sold.  I found it interesting as who didn't have silkworms as a kid but there is a lot of travelling to get the final product back to here.   They also sell a few products made from mulberries like jams and tea made from the bark of the tree.  They had some to taste...not awful and I would have bought some but they didn't have any left.

Chilli Waters  Across the road from the silkworms there is a place that has dried fruit, a couple of types of golf, bamboo products...We went for the dried fruit but bought some chill pickled onions that are HOT!.  Nice cut up on pizza or cooked with other food but straight out of the jar...hot!  Next time we are in the area we may try our hand at a game of Big Ball Golf. 

Cowarumup.  What can I say about this cow town.  I loved it.  There are cows everywhere.  Not real ones but throughout the town area there are dozens of cow statues, some big, some small.  Standing, lying down and even a golden one, in the park, way up high on a pole.  We had to check out the Candy Cow lollie shop and once again we missed seeing anything being made and after all the icecream we had not long had we didn't buy anything.
Just before we left this town I found out that these cows have a "wheres Wally" type symbol on them.  We found a couple but it was time to leave so had to give the rest a miss. 

It was a full day and I didn't get to see and do everything on my list but I'm pretty sure that I'll be down that way again one day and will get to do them then.

Have you been to any of these places?  What did you think of them?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Kings Park.

Last year I went with a friend to Perth and on the way home we drove through Kings Park, stopped for a bit, looked at the view and I resolved then to sweet talk the husband into bringing me back for a proper look around.     We went on the first Monday in December, 2012.

Coming from south of Perth we took the Forrest Highway, that becomes the Freeway and we followed that all the way up to the Mounts Bay Road exit, turned onto that, around past the old Swan Brewery, up a bit then turned right at some lights onto Winthrop, right again onto Poole and we were in the park.  We first drove around to the Dinosaur Playground where we parked. 

I liked this area, lots of massive climbonable creatures, large expanse of grass, playground, barbecues...There was a cafe if you like that sort of thing, we don't so I can't comment on food or prices.  It was quite busy though

There is a playground island that lots of kids were having fun on.

My favorite was the Crocodile like creature.

The others were OK too though.

A structure called the Windy Walk and yes I talked the husband into walking it with me.   We had to check it out to see if it would be safe for the grandkid.  Yes we did.  

After walking around this area and spying the sign pointing the way to the DNA Tower we decided to walk the 1.4km to that then come back and get the car and drive to a different area.
So we walked, walked and kept walking. I'm sure the sign was wrong...but finally we could see what we were headed for.

 This is looking back from where we came.  See, it is a long way and I was right to be huffing and puffing!

Looking towards the city.

This one is to show that I really did climb it.

Now after climbing this tower we were going to walk back to the car and drive to the other end of the park then have lunch before exploring some more.    But we saw a sign...something else was only 300metres the other way and 300 metres isn't far so we'll do that first.  Then another sign, then another until we were *this close* to the treetop walk that I wanted to do.   So much for lunch...

This bridge has a section with glass sides and I found it a bit unnerving to walk on, in a scary exciting way...yes folks, I am a SookyLaLa, bigtime.

 These are looking out towards the city from different areas on our walk.

Narrows Bridge.  One day I will drive across that.

Just because I liked it.  No idea what type of tree though there was probably a sign to say.

After walking for hours we ended up at the War Memorial.  This is a lovely area, grass, trees, views.   There is a cafe and a restaurant here too which was just as well because our lunch was at the other end of the park, a loooong walk away and I needed food.  Now!.   Husband wanted a drink too so we went and had a look.  Ended up getting a family box if chips, a coke and a carton of chocmilk.  He drank the coke, I tipped half the chocmilk out as it tasted *funny*  I should have taken it back but kept thinking it was me.  Husband tasted it and said that it might have a bit of a taste but wasn't off.  Yep, I should have taken it back and was cranky at myself that I didn't.  The chips?  Best hot chips that I had had in a long time.  Hot, crispy, yum.   If When we go again we will get some more.

This tree is, if I remember correctly, a Cedar.  Big, beautiful...a bit like me.  haha.   We sat under it while we rested and ate our snack.

Laying down under it and looking up.  

Of course there is so much more to see and do here but it does needs a packed lunch and more than a few hours.   I loved being here, this park is a credit to all those who work here and look after it.  I will definitely be going again and if anyone in WA hasn't been yet, if you are ever in or near Perth it is well worth a visit.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Binningup Spring Festival

Way back in November last year I saw an ad in a local paper.


Date: 24 November 2012   Time: 10:00am to 3:00pm
Cost: Free

It looked interesting and not too far away so I decided to take the grandaughter.   I thought it might be a good thing to do before we went out to the caravan for the weekend.  I'm glad I did.  This fair has been on for quite a few years apparently but this was the first time that I had seen anything about it.  It seems that you do miss out on things when you don't read newspapers or watch TV.

This festival is on every year but this was the first time that I have been and if you have kids then I suggest that you mark it on your calendar for November 2013. 

Entry was free, rides for the kids were free...Yep that's right.  All the rides for the kids were free and there was stuff suitable for the littlies as well as the older ones.   There were food stalls and heaps of other stalls selling all kinds of stuff, most at very reasonable prices and that is saying something coming from me who is one of the tightest people I know.  It was a markety fair type event and we enjoyed it very much.

The grandaughter liked the magic show, both bouncy castles and the tractor train.  There was a climbing wall and trampoline bungie, they both looked like fun and the lines for these were long.  There was giant balls that the kids climbed into and made them roll around like a mouse on a wheel. Too cool.

Afterwards we did go into Myalup with the intention of staying the night in the caravan but something came up and we didn't stay.  We spent a couple of hours playing on the beach then came home.  

I have pencilled this in for this year and if you are interested in Spring Festivals then I suggest you do the same.  If you see me there come and say hello.

New Year, New Adventures.

So far this year we haven't been anywhere, no day trips, no adventures. Nothing.  Nowhere.   I might start to feel bad about that except I have noticed that I haven't told you all about the last few things we did last year so it's probably just as well I haven't done anything this year yet.  And yes that is a definite "yet"  This year I fully intend to do *something* at least every month.  Yes, yes I do...

Some of the places I plan on going I have been before.  A lot will be day trips only but there has to be a few solo trips as well or husband says I'll need to pay for my next van/car by myself.  If he sees me getting out,  doing and having adventures then he will help me get something when it's time to. 

I am going to make up a list of places that I plan on exploring but in the meantime I will try and remember back to last year and what we did and when and get some posts up.  Old news I know but still fun and worth me writing about if only to remind myself of what I have done and where I have been.