The wild adventure statistics…

Adventure Stats:  The Wild Kimberley

Our most favourite parts; Berkley River, King George River, Glycosmis Bay and Gallery Bay (all the first week out of Wyndham).

Distances; At sea: 30 days at sea.  1240 nautical miles / 2235km. By road: 10 days driving. 6180 kms.

BOAT Fuel; We used 2100 litres of diesel.   20 litres of petrol in the little Whaly outboard. Wyndham $1100.  Truscott $1375.  Kuri Bay #1 $2130.  Kuri Bay #2 $1400.  Total $6000.

TRUCK Fuel;  Northbound: $1355 / 830 litres.  Southbound: $1427 / 842 litres.  Total $2780.

Drinking water;  Hard to estimate.  But we used between 8 -10 litres per day for four. We relied on waterfalls for fresh water.

Perfect moments; Beautiful waterfalls like the postcards.  Glassy sunsets.  Yummy pressure cooker creations.  Horizontal Boat ride.  Hiking into find a waterfall.  Pulling into Twin Falls waterfall.  Rock bar spa at Berkley River.  Dugong Bay waterfall (the last swim).  The Apartments caves. Interesting rock art and skulls.

Unexpected moments; Wild weather.  Whirlpools and tidal overflows.  Dodgy mangrove creeks.  Hard to catch fish.  No crabs. Bigge Island crocodile visit.  No other families around doing the same.  Crocodile banging on our boat.  Loosing reverse gear.  Jumping in Gallery Bay waterhole was fun.  Sleepless nights in rough anchor.  Cant see through the water for depth and bommies.  Croc in Freshwater Creek!  Scratching and hives from all our insect bites.

We missed the most;  Nothing… my friends… the safe security of home… roll over in bed without hitting my head or elbow…  our doggies..  The comforts of home. 

What we didn’t miss; School… modern day pressures of scheduled life…  the internet… green stuff like rocket… coffee and cake with the girls!  Answering emails.

Happy about;  That all our planning and organising paid off.  Most of our preplanning ‘worked’; the fuel drops, collecting water from the waterfalls, our food provisions.  Our bunks all were super comfy and we slept well.  That we did a wild month-long adventure at sea and everyone got along and enjoyed it.  All the reading books and card playing – back to family basics.  That we lived at sea for 30 days!

Why do we all love holidays so much?  Because we can live a simple life in the moment without the pressure of ‘should be doing something’.   The vibe of holidays is freedom…

 

 

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Reflections…

We have been home a week.  All back into our routines, space and commitments.  Geoff is back busy at Southside working under cars.  Bailey and Gracie dropped straight back into tests and timetables at school.  Im back into my life as the woman of the house shopping, cooking, washing clothes. And I am spring cleaning at Southside as ‘my job’, having decided not to go back to renting an office as My Coach Wendy for now.

When we got home our house was so big, clean and cosy like a luxurious mountain place.  The land is green and still.  Winter arrived with the rain flowing steadily nearly all week.  Its been glorious. We all pulled out our winter clothes and dressing warming with excitement.  The fire is going and soup has been cooking on the stove.  All modern luxuries.  Our dogs are happy to see us and our gardens a beautiful sanctuary.

I have spent lots of time witnessing the way in which we live our lives.  The one that was simple and free on the boat, at sea.  In comparison to the one we live here in the modern structured world.  It is interesting.  Humans are very adaptable creatures, slot in and get on with whatever is presented.

I notice how we get the luxury of doing different things and being a different way without the pressures of modern day life.  Like reading our books, playing cards and talking more.  That space is now taken up with us being separated in our different rooms, internet, TV, school and work.  Normal lovely life. The world we are born into.  We do have so much choice.  How we want to live our lives.  What we do with our time and how we behave.

So how can we blend the two worlds?  Spaciousness and density.  Connection and separation.  Freedom and structure.  Stillness and demands.  Firstly – the awareness that they exist.  Second – that we have choices, in how we engage and how we spend our time.

A balance of existing in the busy modern world and creating enough space to experience everyday bliss and to hear the big magic.  Having big picture dreams and allowing yourself to feel pleasure in the everyday moment.  Rather than waiting for a waterfall to give yourself permission to experience joy.

Geoff and I have reflected on our Wild Kimberley adventure. Wow we did something pretty amazing. Yes it was a navigational nightmare, but it was totally worth it.  Amazing scenery and great family time together.  Its a BIG tick on the bucket list.  We keep getting asked ‘what next’?  Lets see what cooks up!

We are living by our motto ‘if you are not living on the edge you are taking up too much room’.  Life is for living… go for it.  Do something that scares you!

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The home run…

We spent two night in Broome chilling out, watching the sunset and eating yummy food.

Then we spent the next few days driving home to Geraldton.  The housesitters are organised to move on and we will be moving back into our big luxurious home!

We stayed one night in Wickham with Gibbo and Amanda.  Had a coffee with Kate and Eddie on the way through Karratha.  The trip home is more relaxed that the journey up.  We all have square bums.

Its been six weeks away and the adventure is over…  Home now to unpack, clean up and get back intoIMG_9907IMG_9917IMG_9930IMG_9921IMG_9956IMG_9960IMG_9980IMG_9986IMG_0006 our modern day routines.

Returning to land…

The wind came up during the night and rocked the boat.  We were all up around midnight sorting things out. We had to put Whaly up on the roof and move anchor to the other side of the little bay.  Seems we were right in the tidal flow and the boat was thrashing about.  Once we moved it was just enough to stay in our bunks and get some sleep.

Half way into King Sound the water turned from ocean blue to churning brown.  We knew were back in the muddy tidal flow and close to the finale.

Geoff was nervous about getting the boat out with the rushing tide at the jetty and no reverse.  I was more than anxious, remembering the nightmare morning we put the boat in at Whydham!  Dave had arranged for the truck to get from Wyndham to Derby met us at the boat ramp. There were a few other boats around and the tide was running pretty fast even in supposedly slack water!

Luckily everything worked out on our side (I was silently praying!)  Geoff brought her in and we threw ropes and tied her up quickly before the rushing tide pulled her away again.  Endorfin went on like clockwork and we were back safely on land. Amen.

It was a very weird feeling.  We spent the rest of the day feeling land sick.  A bit wobby and slow.  Land life feels dense.  Water life feels open and peaceful. We saw more people in 5 minutes than we had seen in the past month!

We spend the night at Dave and Lynns in Derby.  The house seemed so clean and fancy!  And Oh the shower was glorious!  We all went out for a counter meal at the Spinifex Pub. Mmmmm green stuff – salad, burgers, steak,, chips, champagne and cold beer.

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Last sleep on the sea…

We woke up in our safe calm anchorage in The Graveyard.  There was a heavy dew and mist on the water. Our provisions are running out… we are on the last carton of milk, the last cereal, last portion of meat, last bit of coffee, last beers, no more wine, no more potatoes and we ate the last cheese for lunch.  It’s time to go home…

We tried to find the actual gravesites the bay is named after, but didn’t succeed.  I did find some beautiful wild rose kind of vine though.

We spent the rest of the day motoring along through the rest of the Buccaneer Archipelago towards King Sound and Derby.

We went through Strickland Bay, Cone Bay and Usborne Bay. That meant past hundreds of islands, unchartered bommies, a fish farm, little beaches and many scary whirlpools.  The craziest whirlpools we have dodged yet, Cascade Bay, were scary as and we had to motor around the worst ones and go through the ones that looked ok.  For about an hour the boat was moving around side to side as we went through them.  Demonstrates and magnitude of water that moves each tide and the power of the sea.  Unstoppable.

The weather is glassy so the journey was enjoyable and clear to see everything around us.  Geoff was exhausted from navigating through the whirlpools and racing tide. 

We are camped for our last night 70km north of Derby, ready to enter King Sound tomorrow for our journey in.  We will have made 30 days alive at sea, in the Wild Kimberley.  The whole area was far more treacherous that we realised, so it’s a big achievement that we did it.

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Picture perfect…

 

Last night just as I was drifting off to sleep I hear a bang bang on the side of the boat.  I wait, then hear it again… bang bang.  Usually when I hear a bang sound it’s the anchor rope or a water bottle falling over. Then again, bang bang.  By now I know something is banging on the boat.  I get up, get the torch and find a croc in the water right alongside our boat banging.

I woke everyone up and we all checked him out.  A very curious and a little agro 2 metre croc.  He stayed around for hours.  Gracie and I got up to have a look about three times when he was banging, and at one stage hissing in anger.  In the end I fell asleep.  It was great to see one really close.

We woke up around 7am and made tea and coffee and headed to Silica Bay on Hidden Island for breaky.  New scenery.  We spent the whole morning there having a real beach day.  Without too much worry about anything except swimming (with one of us on croc watch), jumping from the rocks, having a little picnic and relaxing.  The weather was holiday perfect in the crystal clear turquoise water and squeaky white sand.  We even took our umbrella!

We left to get through Whirlpool Passage near slack water and come into The Graveyard, in Strickland Bay.  The navigational charts were not accurate (half the Kimberley say ‘uncharted’) so we had to manage through the passage by eye to stay in the centre of the passage and away from the steep reef edge.

We are right in the middle of the Buccaneer Archipelago now and the scenery is magic.

Geoff and I are up having our usual rooftop drinks for sunset together.  Our time of the day to have some time out and relax.  I also tidy up my photos from the day and write this diary on my laptop.

Bailey tried to catch a tuna.  We went through the baitfish and feeding tuna several times and no luck. Fishing here is not easy that’s for sure!  Last night I will cook the last packet of meat, mince for dinner.  Two nights left.

The bay we are in is protected.  There are some kind of dolphins with in a sleeping pattern going around our boat.  They have more petite features than our common dolphins at home, like a half size dorsal fin.

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Soaking it all in…

We left our little overnight anchorage at Crocodile Creek after a morning splash at the waterfall.  Leaving while the creek still had enough water to get out.  The crocodile creek anchorage is a hole just big enough to camp in overnight.  The creek dried all around us.  During the night we checked the ropes several times.  And despite the name, we didnt even see a croc!

We toured around the bay visiting Dog Leg and Silver Gull Creek.  Both lovely just to cruise along taking in the unusual rock formations, narrow passes and waterways.

We didn’t travel far today.  All these creeks are close together in the same Bay of Yampi Sound. No far from the two working fly-in-fly-out iron ore mines.  There are more people around now.  We have seen lots of tour boats, working boats, private and the Dog Leg fuel barge. Also planes and a helicopter flying about.

Gracie and I had a lovely beach excursion while the boys fished from Endorfin.  We collected some shells and souvenired a lovely slab of slate rock to add to my home collection.  Gracie and I tried to reach an eagle nest to look in, but it was too precarious to get to.  We found lots of interesting things to explore like a beach cave and to investigate the unusual things washed up on the beach – like a dried puffer fish!

So our trip is coming to an end.  We have started talk of home.  What we are going to eat at the pub in Broome, what we have been missing, or wanting to do and our highlights from the trip.

We have all really relished the family time.  A month at sea with no other worldly pressured or distractions.  Our daily worries have been the weather, how to get to the waterfalls and where to anchor safely.  We have ate really well, so not having big food cravings apart from salad!  Tonight, we had the second last parcel of meat.  Steak with vegies.  Carrots from a can, potatoes, cabbage, pumpkin and gravy. Pretty much the same as home except the broccoli was missing!  We have all eaten well.

I have really loved the time together.  And it’s great the kids have gotten back into reading.  We have never read so much as this trip. Book after book.  Hours of luxury personal time daily – the likes of reading, fishing, looking out to sea and exploring… Plus at night we have been playing cards, which has been lots of fun.  No telly or internet distractions.  And we have all been going to bed really early – like 7.30 to 8.30pm.

I’m looking forward to going to the hair dressers.  I have worn my hair up the whole time and it’s like an old crone.  Wiry and dry.   Geoff will be busy when he gets back to Southside.  We are two staff down so he will hit the ground running.  And the kids will be back into the routine and school and have lots to catch up on.

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