Eagle versus Kangaroos

Thur. 23rd May 2019

Good eagle shot DaveWe are sad to leave Kalbarri as we have had a fabulous time here, but there is so much more to see on our itinerary. After our last enormous breakfast fruit bowl at the B&B, we say goodbye to Paul the owner of Gecko Lodge and keep heading north.  We do have some excitement as we see a wedgetail eagle sat in a tree on the side of the road. No problem in pulling over to stop as there are no other cars for miles. We apply the usual rules of taking a banker shot first in case the eagle flies off. He stays and Dave is able to take a few shots out of the car window.

Billabong RoadhouseThe roads are more of the same. Straight, empty through scrub land of red sand and small green or brown bushes with little to see. After that good start to the day of seeing the eagle we head on to the next roadhouse some 100km down the road. With a name like Billabong we cannot resist stopping and I was ready for a break from driving. It was also good timing as as we needed to top up the Beast with diesel and Dave with coffee.

Hamelin PoolsThere is just miles of nothing (get used to it as there is still a long way to Darwin!!). We schedule lunch in at Hamelin Pools where we want to see the stromatolites there. The lakes indicated on Google Maps are not the pools we have come to see but Hamelin Pool Marine Nature Reserve is actually an inlet, which at very low tide is almost a separate pool of water. This makes the shallow water here trapped and it also is much warmer in summer than the sea. Over time it has become very salty making it a good place for these weird formations to grow. These are protected from us humans by restricting access to a raised boardwalk out over the pool.

Shell beachIn need of a comfort break I spot facilities half an hour down the road at Shell Beach, this was not on our list to visit but, as ever we are in for a unique experience. This beach is made up of millions of tiny shells from the Hamelin Cockle in a strip at the waters edge some 10 metres wide and 60km long. Cue arty photo shots as it is difficult to portray this picturesque and unusual beach. As I am writing this I find that St Andrews Anglican Church in (Kalbarri) town is built from blocks of hard packed shells and Dave tells me are aren’t going back to see it as we are now 300km away!

On The Deck @ Shark Bay - A great place to stayOn The Deck B&B in Denham is slightly out of town and in an amazing setting overlooking Little Lagoon. Phil and Kerri, our hosts, tell us that the Deck is the best place to see sunset so it is a quick unpack and hotfoot it back into town to get steaks and salad for supper, so we can relax back at base for the evening. On our return we see kangaroos on the road outside our accommodation and the owners explain there has not been any significant rain since October so all the plants the roos feed off are bare. They therefore provide water and carrots to supplement the sparse food the animals find for themselves. Cue many, many kangaroo photos.

Fighting KangaroosWe are just buzzing at what we are seeing, it is just awesome. Watching two kangaroos fighting is quite something, seeing them balance on their tails as they kick out at each other. I was too slow to put my camera on continuous shooting mode to catch a kick. Kerri, the owner, and I are then able to play frisbee with some sliced white bread aiming at the kangaroos to ensure each kangaroo had one piece of bread each. It is sad that the animals are suffering in this drought but good to see someone helping them.

Inquisitive kangaroo after food and waterI'm looking at you

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