Day 189 – Tuesday, 29 November 2022

The alarm went off at 8:30am but I was already awake. It is incredible how much light comes through into the van when the awning is not open.

I had a quick word with mum while Russ was busy outside striking camp and was pleased to hear that she was feeling a bit better than yesterday. We cut our conversation short when she had a visitor.

It was a beautiful sunny day and the temperature had risen to 26 degrees when we left the caravan park and Ravensthorpe at 9:59am for the last time on this trip.

We turned onto the South Coast Highway and the road conditions hadn’t miraculously changed overnight. In fact, they continued almost all the way to Esperance 187 kilometres away. In several places they had applied speed restrictions because the road surface was so badly mauled. It was a very scary proposition to overtake a loaded road train in these circumstances.

Once we had traversed the hills of the Ravensthorpe Range we were most definitely into wheat and cattle country, and the scenery was much flatter than previously.

We went past one dead Eastern Brown snake and a dead fox. We came across Poot Street (almost common after some of the other names in the area), Munglinup township and River, Monjingup and Coomalbidgup – who thinks of these names??

We finally arrived at the Bushlands Holiday Village (caravan park) around 1:10pm. It is in a bush setting and we are about five kilometres out of Esperance which is marvellous as there is little road noise.

However, although we are in a 5G area for Telstra there is no signal worth a cracker in the caravan park. It is going to be a long seven days without any internet connection. At least texting works, and hopefully there should be no interruptions to the phone signal.

We set up camp and had lunch before we put out the awning and put down the shade matting. The area is a very fine white sand, and from past experience, it will get into and onto everything.

After that we went into town to buy some water as neither of us were able to finish our cuppas at lunch time, even after double filtering the water. It was just horrible.

While at Woolworths I grabbed some fresh multi-grain rolls and a hot chook for tea.

I have finished inputting the diary into the computer, so it is now ready for printing. However, in order to send it out and post the photos we will need to go into town near one of the areas where coverage is superb. At least we will be in the right place to post the letters.

Russ is getting antsy and is talking about longer drives across the Nullabor Plains. I had scheduled just over 200 kilometres per day between roadhouses, but we may just pass some of them and continue on.