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Rolling Adventures Pauline's Adventures

23/07/2013 Windjana Gorge and Tunnel Creek (Gibb River Road)

AUSTRALIA | Tuesday, 23 July 2013 | Views [176]

Paid my car Rego by phone near the gateway to Birdwood Downs, the last phone signal point in the area, as I wasn't sure If I'd be in Kununurra by the due date.  Meanwhile the others headed off towards Silent Grove where they would stay 2 nights. They had limited fuel capacity and were not intending to visit Windjana gorge and Tunnel Creek until their return journey but I decided to go there on the way before catching up to them the next day at Silent Grove.

 

The first 60 km from Birdwood Downs was bitumen and when I reached the gravel I reduced my tyre pressure to 30psi. There was a lot of dust, something to get used to over the next few weeks. There were many beautiful Boab trees, lots of termite mounds and unusual wattle.

 

The road into Windjana Gorge was very corrugated in parts. This Gorge forms part of the Napier Range, an ancient Devonian barrier reef system once under the sea and Tunnel Creek has formed an underground passage through the reef system. Tunnel Creek, where there was a tour on offer by the aboriginal folk for $60, was once a hideout for aboriginal outlaw Jandamarra AKA Pigeon who shot a Policeman.  Here I waded thigh deep through the water with torch and my only pair of shoes hoping they would survive the dunking. I saw fish and cherubin (crustaceans like prawns) but no sign of the bats living there. I met John and Mary Ellen (AKA Mellen) who were just finishing a month on the GRR and Mitchell Falls (further north) and 3 guys doing a 15,000 km bicycle ride around Oz to raise money for MND (they had not ridden their bicycles into Tunnel Creek).

 

Headed off to Windjana Gorge to camp for the night. John and Mellen gave me lots of great information and I bought their Kimberley guide book from them. Made a quick visit to the gorge at sunset and saw a couple of crocodiles lurking there. Tomorrow morning I would get up early and walk the gorge. Slept in my car bed. 

Tags: gibb river road, kimberley, western australia

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