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Rolling Adventures Pauline's Adventures

19/07/2013 80 Mile Beach

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 19 July 2013 | Views [312]


Early start caused by a lot of movement by workers to get on the road early. Had a look around the ship loading area of Port Hedland and got talking to a young Singaporean guy who worked on the ships. The iron ore comes here by train from the BHP Whaleback mine in Newman and gets dumped at the Port by tipping the train carriages over 3 at a time onto a conveyor belt which stock piles it. 
Another scooper and conveyor belt loads the ships which are all lined up out at sea. Rio Tinto and Dampier Salt own a big salt mine here which gets exported too. Salt has 160 uses including helping to make steel. Everyone had said that Hedland was horrible and not worth stopping for but being right on the water I found it more pleasing than Karratha and it had more trees, and some nice parks near the water and not so much construction going on right in town. Also saw the old detention centre which has now been converted to a motel.
Now I have seen the main towns of the rich mining area of the Pilbara (except Newman) ie Paraburdoo, Tom Price, Karratha, Dampier and Port Hedland and the stunning colors of the Spinifex, red rocks, red dust, wattle and the Sturt Desert Peas.
Drove about 250km to 80 mile beach caravan park checking out De Grey River Camp area on the way which looked nice.  At the Purdoo Roadhouse I got talking to a guy who was waiting for his car to come from Port Hedland where it had been towed because it had no transmission fluid. After a while he confessed that he was intending to change the oil but drained the transmission fluid by mistake and there was no way to refill it. Note to self: Leave it for the experts. He asked me to update his friends at the 80mile beach van park when I got there.
Not much to see on the way, not many trees, a few cows, no fences, hence a few dead cows too. A makeshift 3 piece band was playing in the caravan park for all the grey nomads so I went to listen. It's very windy at the caravan park and quite cool. 
Decided not to put my tent up due to the wind so slept in the car.  Although there is a small camp kitchen there is nowhere to sit out of the wind. In bed reading by 6:30pm with a cuppa

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