Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Broome 1-3 July

Our stopover in Broome was designed to co-incide with the Staircase to the Moon which would happen on July 2, 3 and 4. While we were at Charnley River we were told about accommodation at Broome Bird Observatory which was cheaper than other options in Broome itself, and was about half an hour's drive from town.

Although we knew it was a bird observatory we were surprised at the enthusiasm of the many birders who stay there. One man claimed he had spotted 706 different Australian species. Apparently there are over 800. Each night they have a "bird call"where one person reads out a list of known local birds and people indicate whether they have seen them that day. This was one of those times when we felt totally out of our depth in the knowledge department. However due to the variety of bird life we have seen so far on this trip, we are now able to name a few more. It was a nice place to camp, with only 10 sites surrounded by bushland.

A goshawk at the water trough

An agile wallaby, also at the water trough

The road in has deep sandy sides

The location of the Observatory is on Roebuck Bay, on the opposite end to Broome, so we decided to try to watch the Staircase from there. However after uncountable cloudless days, that day heavy cloud moved in and severely disrupted our viewing. Climbing up a steep section of the beach in the dark wasn't a lot of fun either. Our next night's viewing was much better but my camera skills and equipment were deficient.
The first night with cloud cover

The following night was much better
While in Broome we checked out Cable Beach and photographed the camels but had no inclination to ride another one; went to Gantheaume Point to find to dinosaur footprints and then checked out the deep water port and wharf. There I did my best stunt of the trip, tripped over my feet, injured 3 fingers and my knee and smashed the screen on my phone , which couldn't be unlocked. I now have a new phone, somewhat fewer contacts than before and bruised pride. It's difficult to wipe up and help setup camp, and a few other things your thumb is useful for. However we will survive.

We also had a wander through Chinatown,  the Sun picture theatre,  an outdoor theatre, and walked very carefully on Streeters jetty which was in severe need of repair, and just stopped without warning. I glanced briefly in Paspaley Pearls showroom, and dissuaded David from purchasing a pair of pigskin sandals costing over $200, which didn't even fit well.

Camels at Cable Beach

Cable beach

The lighthouse at Gantheaume Point

Casts of dinosaur footprints at Gantheaume Point

The view from Gantheaume Point. No, that's not me.

Sun Picture Theatre

David on Streeter's Jetty

It just stops

The wharf where I tripped and did all the damage

Interesting rocks near the wharf

The osprey wouldn't turn around

While sitting at Cable Beach uploading my blog (David had a swim as usual) I met a teacher I used to work with at Denistone East in the 1980s. He said I looked familiar so I can't have aged too badly. We didn't see all the sights of Broome, but seemed to spend a fair bit of time in shopping centres. I've had my fill now for a while. Our next stop is Cape Leveque and everyone has told us how bad the road is, so we approach it with some interest.

PS we are now back in Broome after Cape Leveque. The State of Origin decider is on tonight!

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