White Gum in Storm Clouds

White Gum in Storm Clouds

Geraldton – Northhampton – Kalbarri – Galena Bridge (Murchison River) 

Northampton Tavern

Northampton Tavern

It was sad to say goodbye to the family this morning, but I have to head to Kalbarri to check it out. Northhampton has some pretty impressive buildings and lots of history. I misunderstood Rod’s directions to Kalbarri and didn’t turn off at Northhampton, so missed seeing Port Gregory and the coastal gorges south of Kalbarri.  I passed the Hutt River Province turnoff – unaware that I could have taken that turn too, and went all the way to Ajana-Kalbarri road which took me through the National Park.

As I drive through Kalbarri National Park, I’m amazed at the amount of different plants that are on this vast, rolling sand plain – the gorgeous banksias, several types of them, and the grevilleas are prominent.  The plain seems to go on forever. I stop several times to take in the beauty of the unusual flora, many that I’ve never seen before.

Just before Kalbarri, I saw a turnoff to Meanarra Hill.  Even though the road was very corrugated, the view from the lookout was spectacular – the surrounding heath, the national park, the Murchison River and the Ocean with Kalbarri thrown in as well – fantastic. Back down the hill and into Kalbarri village – a coastal tourist mecca and fishing village in idyllic surrounds.  They feed the pelicans here every day and the foreshore is geared for family enjoyment. I explored the township, went to the National Parks office to get my pass for the day and some information as to which gorges I could get to in the bus.  The Loop with Nature’s window is out of the question, as is the Z bend as the ranger advised that the road was very corrugated and suggested that I go to the Hawk’s Head and Ross Graham Lookout.  I’d passed these on the way in so, I had to retrace my steps. The Murchison River Gorges are spectacular – Hawks’ Head cliffs are very steep and there is no access to the river here but the view is well worth it.  Ross Graham Lookout gives a different perspective to the river and there is access to the river bank so I got to go down to the bottom. I imagine the water that must surge through here in the wet season would make a spectacular sight, but there’s very little water today.

After the lookouts I head back to the North West Coastal Highway and the campsite I’ve chosen for tonight beside the Murchison River at Galena Bridge.  There are about seven black swans on the river – some with their cygnets and in the other pool there are ducks – a storm is brewing so I tuck myself in for the night after a very productive day.

Meanarra Hill Road

Meanarra Hill Road

Meanarra Hill VIew

Meanarra Hill VIew

Kalbarri River Country

Kalbarri River Country

Kalbarri Streetscape

Kalbarri Streetscape

Kalbarri Bay

Kalbarri Bay

Kalbarri Park Information

Kalbarri Park Information

Melaleuca in Flower

Melaleuca in Flower

Sandplain from Meanarra Hill

Sandplain from Meanarra Hill

Hawks Head and Murchison River

Hawks Head and Murchison River

Hawks Head

Hawks Head

 Murchison River at Hawks Head

Murchison River at Hawks Head

Ross Graham View

Ross Graham View

Ross Graham River Walk

Ross Graham River Walk

Ross Graham River Walk

Ross Graham River Walk

Murchison River at Campsite

Murchison River at Campsite

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