New Norcia –The Pinnacles – Cervantes

Wedge Island Panorama

Wedge Island Panorama

I went to Mass in the beautiful Abbey Church this morning, after bidding Maureen and Bruce from Moama goodbye. After church I did many phone calls home as I’m not sure of coverage for tonight.  I’m heading to The Pinnacles and the drive takes me through Moora and on to Dandaragan – a great little farming community with a Pioneer Park which has great amenities – even a small caravan park at the rear of the oval – pity it’s so close to the start of my day. There’s a hot shower so I take the opportunity to wash my hair in real running water and then head off to Cataby via a very scenic drive. There’s a magnificent olive grove and the banksias along this stretch are stunning – Banksia trees instead of the bushes I’m used to and they are flowering.  I have to stop and photograph some of them.

At Cataby I decide to turn back towards Perth and head to Lancelin to ensure that I don’t miss The Pinnacles, my main aim for the day’s journey. The highway fauna is fascinating – banksias, blackboys and ferns. Lancelin is the West Australian wind surfing capital and the white sand dunes are really amazing – pure white snow.  I passed a sign on the highway somewhere today that said “Caution sand drifts may cause poor visibility”, I can imaging the shifting sands here doing just that.

The Pinnacles is north of Lancelin and they certainly did not disappoint – I don’t know what I expected, but certainly not this landscape which looks like a forest of stones – rising out of the sand – some look like columns, others like tombstones, all very different and so many of them – an amazing landscape, like nothing I’ve ever seen before.  I walked through them and then took Livin’ for a drive around the four kilometre loop. Thousands of these limestone pillars – thankfully there are bays to stop in and admire the view and take copious amounts of photos!!There were even kangaroos hopping across my path.

Paula and Livin' on the Pinnacles Drive

Paula and Livin’ on the Pinnacles Drive

After The Pinnacles Discovery Centre, I head to Cervantes, and as usual I check out the Visitor Information board at the entrance to the town and discover that there is a lookout out at Hansen Bay and Stromatolites at Lake Thetis which is on the way into Cervantes, so I decide to check them both out. The lookout is high enough over Hansen Bay to give an amazing view of the whole area – well worth the steps!! I headed back towards town and Lake Thetis – a very salty lake – 3 times saltier than the ocean, where the amazing rock like structures called stromatolites – built by micro-organisms too small for the eye to see – they are only found in a few places in the world. These fragile structures are protected by an observation walkway. As it is getting late and I need to book into the caravan park, I head into Cervantes. I arrived at the park in time to book in and make my way to the beach before sunset.  I met up with a lovely couple Fran and Brian from down near Bunbury and shared a stunning sunset with them.  Fran’s battery was running low so I charged it up for her as she’d forgotten her charger and was lucky enough to be given some homemade fruit cake – what a treat. I had dinner in the camp kitchen with a couple I’d met at New Norcia, Leo and Gabby from Geelong, so I’ve had a very social evening as well as an eventful, educational day.

Dandaragan Entrance Sign

Dandaragan Entrance Sign

Abbey Church

Abbey Church

Banksia Flower

Banksia Flower

Lancelin Sand Dunes

Lancelin Sand Dunes

Pinnacles Drive

Pinnacles Drive

The Pinnacles

The Pinnacles

Pinnacles

Pinnacles

Pinnacles

Pinnacles

Paula at the Pinnacles

Paula at the Pinnacles

Hansen Bay Lookout Steps

Hansen Bay Lookout Steps

Hansen Bay

Hansen Bay

Hansen Bay Lookout Steps

Hansen Bay Lookout Steps

Lake Thetis Information

Lake Thetis Information

Lake Thetis

Lake Thetis

Stromatalites Information

Stromatalites Information

Stromatalites

Stromatalites

Stromatalites

Stromatalites

Cervantes Welcome Signs

Cervantes Welcome Signs

Cervantes Jetty

Cervantes Jetty

Cervantes Bay

Cervantes Bay

Cervantes Sunset

Cervantes Sunset

Pinnacles Drive

Pinnacles Drive

Cervantes Sunset

Cervantes Sunset

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