Australia – Start of a 4WD adventure

Australia – Start of a 4WD adventure

We spent most of our last day together with Maarten en Elly driving from Albany back to Perth. Almost 500 km of sometimes scenic and sometimes rather monotonous road but we arrived fairly early in Upper West Swan, part of the Swan Valley wine region, near Perth. We decided to celebrate our last night together with a splendid dinner at one of the wineries nearby; The Black Swan Winery. The next day was an exciting one. We picked up our 4 wheel drive camper van and said goodbye to Maarten and Elly. With a bit of a detour we managed to fill the van with lots of food and drinks and to arrive at the Pinnacle Desert just before sunset.

The Pinnacles are a bizarre set of naturally sculpted limestone pins, some high, many short, in the middle of a patch of yellow sand desert. While the sun sets, the Pinnacles’ colors change dramatically. A fantastic phenomenon! When we arrived at the campground it was already dark. Our first night in the camper was quite, well…, exciting. Luckily we managed to squeeze ourselves into the cramped high sleeping area and actually get some sleep. It’s a bit difficult to imagine we will be spending 4 weeks in this thing; an altered Toyota Land Cruiser with a huge V8 engine. It has two 90 liter diesel tanks that give us a driving radius of 1200 km max.. Today we revisited the Pinnacles at full daylight. Also very spectacular. After that we drove further up North, taking our first real 4WD detour. The road to the Stockyard Gully Cave was definitely a no go for normal cars and ‘mecha Miek’ is now a master at locking a 4WD car’s front wheel differential.. 😉 The cave itself, a dried up underground river of about 300 meters, is very very dark and rather scary. Especially being there all alone and not having seen anyone while driving up there for at least an hour…

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