There was not too much to pack up this morning as we had only camped here for a couple of days so we were on the road by 9am. It is approximately a 5 hour drive to Broome from Eighty Mile.
I drove Col’s car and the caravan and Col drove my car and the boat on the 10km dirt track out of Eighty Mile. Col wanted to check how the boat and trailer would handle without the shock absorbers. This is the first time I have towed the van on a dirt road and I wondered how I would feel about it. Happy to report that all the boat towing experience made me feel fairly comfortable, although it is a totally different feel driving Col’s car and towing the van. You could feel the van pulling you around more on the softer sections on the road, and let’s face it – I love my Mazda CX5! Col was happy with how the trailer and boat were travelling so we pulled over and swapped cars a little further up the road at a parking bay.
We made really good time getting to Broome as we only stopped briefly twice, once for fuel and once for a toilet stop. We stopped at the Sandfire Roadhouse for fuel and there were peacocks everywhere! It was a strange contrast to see these colourful and magestic birds wandering around a rustic outback roadhouse surrounded by the red dirt of the Pilbara.
We arrived at the Cable Beach Caravan Park and we are both feeling like we did in Coral Bay – claustraphobic!! There are grumpy people everywhere, the roads are narrow and people packed in. Have we been out of civilisation too long? The park itself is beautiful with green trees everywhere but neither Col nor I are enjoying the amount of people or the busyness of the place. We are only staying for four nights and I am kind of glad that we are not staying for a month as orgininally planned. It is not that it is bad, I think our preferences have just changed. Give us a secluded bush camp any day of the week. There were 200 sites at Eighty Mile but you still felt spread out, a totally different feel.
We stopped in at Cable Beach, Guesthemene Point, to see the sunset. Good memories of being here with the crew in 2015. Apparently there are large dinosaur footprints in the rocks which can be seen at low tide. I would like to come back and have a look at these while we are here. The difference between high and low tides is about 10 metres in Broome! This is really important at places like Cable Beach as the water moves huge distances very quickly with the changing of the tide and you could easily get bogged if you park too close the water at low tide. And by ‘bogged’ I mean lose your car to the Ocean!
It turns out that we arrived in Broome on the night for the staircase to the moon so headed over to Town Beach for the moon rise at 7.40pm. The Staircase to the Moon is seen when a full moon rises over the exposed tidal flats of Roebuck Bay and shines a reflection from the rising moon on the horizon to the land and looks like a staircase. It happens 2 – 3 days a month between March and October and we were lucky enough to arrive in Broome on one of those nights. It was really beautiful. We tried to get pictures but unfortunately there were no powerful telescopes handy this time and the photos are not worth posting. It is worth googling it though if you have not seen it. Many people were gathered to watch it and it was a good atmosphere.