Project « cross the desert »
The days pass… Luke, Michaella, Jay and Erin went home. We didn’t yet find a way to cross the Nullarbor. We don’t want to take a plane, it’s too easy. We thought to take the Indian Pacific, this mythic train which goes all accross Australia from Perth to Sydney via Adelaide, but the tickets prices stopped us quickly. We want to cross the Nullarbor by roads, so we decide to try our chance with the road trains. We’ve meet a lot of people on the next few days who know a trucker and who must ask them if they can take us onboard, but we still have no answers.
We have to anticipate an eventual fail. Going aboard a road train is apparently harder and harder because of the laws and insurance companies which forbid truckers to take any passengers with them. So we decide to buy a tent for our plan B : hitchhiking !
In every cases we’ll do some hikings in the mountains in New Zealand, so a good tent will be usefull. The tent cost us a lot of money, but we’ll be sure that it won’t fly away if we’re caught in a storm on a mountain, and we’ll stay dry if some rain comes. The other advantage of that tent is that it’s only weight 2.6kg.
We still have some hope to find to find a trucker, and decide to wait a few more days in Bunbury. We spend our days reading and walking on the beach. Steve and Michelle invite us on their boat for a BBQ. The australian beef is probably the best meat we ever tasted. The cows live in farms sometimes bigger than Belgium ! They are not stressed, and they eat some good quality grass !
On the marina we meet Dino, who was Steeve’s old partner when they was driving some road trains up north. Since then Dino opened a local truck business called Dino’s. He propose us to have a look on his trucks and his yard, and answer all our questions. He even have a truck unique in the world with 3 trailers that can overlap when empty and deploy again in 2mn !
Dino’s visit kept us busy for a while. So we won’t leave the harbor on boat this afternoon. When we come back home, Kevin tell us that Eddy, with who we spent an afternoon on his boat 3 years ago, will be back from holidays in a few days. We will wait untill his comeback, we want to see Eddy ! And he knows a lot of people around, it’s maybe our last chance to catch a road train.
During those few days, Kevin takes us for some day trips around Bunbury. We pass one day in Busselton, which is a few kilometers south of Bunbury along the coast. This little village has the longest wooden jetty in the south hemisphere, that you can go on in a little train, and with an underwater observatory. The jetty is 1841m long, and the observatory is 8m deep underwater.
We spend another day in the Ferguson Vale, gorgeous green valley in a few kilometers from Bunbury. The Ferguson Vale produces some excellent wine, better than all we had tasted in Margaret River, and some wonderful cheese very close of some french ones. We discover the Sauvignon Blanc Sémillon, a wine nearly transparent and very fruity, and during the visit of Ferguson Falls Winery (the best of all, our favorite one. Beautiful little farm with a lovely english garden and a very sweet lady), we are surprised by the Primavera Rosso, a sharp and fruity red wine, nearly sparkling, that you have to drink chilled. Ferguson Fall Winery, also produce the best cheese we had tasted in Australia until now.
This afternoon is also the ocasion to visit the most crazy city in the area : Gnomeville (we’ll write an article about it), and Kevin offers us an ice cream on the shore of Wellington dam.
At Eddy’s comeback, he invites us for a diner to try all the snappers, barramundis, and other big fishes he caught up north during his holidays. Unfortunately, he doesn’t know someone who can take us aboard a road train, but we spent a wonderfull night in his company, we were very happy to see him again.
We decide on the morrow that we’ll leave to hitchhike 2858km, from Bunbury to Adelaide, through the biggest plain in Australia, the longest straight road in the world and on the driest area of the world…
A huge thanks to Liz and Kevin, and Michelle who hosted and fed us during all this time !
Tintin & Riette