3rd-5th September, 2016.
Having left Dampier early, we were soon back on the North West Coastal Highway heading towards Port Hedland. The roadworks that had been in place when we headed south from Port Hedland at the intersection with the Great Northern Highway were still underway but luckily our delay was short and we were soon past Port Hedland and on familiar territory once again. Port Hedland is not one of our favourite towns so we made sure we had no reason to stop there for shopping or refuelling. The drive from Port Hedland to Broome is over 600kms of excruciatingly boring flat and featureless coastal plains. Our planned overnight stop was at the DeGrey River Rest Area where we camped last year on our way north. It is a huge area and we were able to get away from the few fellow campers who were there.
Like all these rest areas along this stretch of highway, it was dry and dusty with the river bed almost dry. Heading further north, we fuelled up at Pardoo Roadhouse and bought a couple of their famous sausage rolls. Our previous experience of these sausage rolls was fantastic. Sadly, early on a Sunday morning is not the best time to purchase. I suspect they were yesterdays as they were very dry on the ends.
Next stop was the Stanley Rest Area where we also camped last year. We had thought about going further to a new rest area, Goldwire, that we checked out on our way south but were a bit concerned that it would be busy as it is a smaller area than Stanley. Stanley wasn’t crowded at all and we found a reasonable spot to set up.
There was a Geocache here which gave Erich 5 minutes of entertainment. Rocks at the base of trees are usually a dead give away.
There were lots of Zebra Finches which are always fun to watch.
A pair of Red-winged Parrots provided some entertainment as well.
Clouds provided an interesting sunset.
Nice early morning light.
We decided to stay an extra night here. Technically it is a 24 hour stop but it wasn’t busy at all so we weren’t keeping others from finding a good spot. Our vehicle was booked for a service at Broome Toyota on the 8th so we had some time to kill.