Letho's Blog

The Carnarvon Blowholes

by on Mai.07, 2011, under Along The Coral Coast

May 07, 2011

Another free night on a free campspot, more money saved! 😉 Also free were the interesting impressions you can only gain when noone is taking care of the amenities around. E.g. a full-blown bird’s nest:

Another sidenote: would you reckon it to be worth constantly cooling a few things in your esky with ice, even if that costs you a few dollars every day? Look at this and judge for yourself.

Left: our spread. Right: not our spread.

Left: our spread. Right: not our spread.

We still prefer cooling our things. 🙂 It wasn’t far until Carnarvon, where we did some research, shopping, refueling and so on. In the afternoon we took a short look at one of the many banana plantations around. This gives you an idea how warm and already subtropical this particular region of Western Australia is. They actually grow on trees! Everyone is eating them, but most people don’t get to see how they actually grow:

Afterwards we contemplated some time if it was worth going to the Carnarvon Blowholes or not since it was a 75 km detour. On the other hand, according to the Australian Geographic’s list we had already seen three other of the famous six blowholes in Australia: in Kiama, Cape Bridgewater and Torndirrup NP, Albany. We finally decided to go, and that paid out well. On the way we took a shortcut over an officially closed road:

We learned sometime later that in case something bad happens you can lose insurance. And that there may be hefty fines if you get caught. We’re a bit more hesitant taking such roads now. 🙂

When we arrived at the Carnarvon Blowholes, the first thing we saw was this sign:

Not very comforting

Not very comforting

They are definitely called King waves for a reason. Here’s why:

Every now and then someone gets dragged into the sea after stepping too close to the water, and every year a few people get killed by them. And here’s why:

We took some time, wandered along the rocky slopes (not too close) and waited for those massive waves spraying up water 20 meters up in the air:

At this place there were not only one or two spots where there was water thrown up, but along a coastline ranging up several hundred meters:

A few dozen meters from the rugged cliffs you will find lots of rock pools where the water drys away over time, leaving behind the sea salt only. It is so pure that you could perfectly use it for cooking:

Lastly, enjoy this special picture series showing how the waves and the resulting blows develop:

After this we headed back on the road and made some kilometers up to our next destination: Coral Bay. We arrived there already in the dark and were basically expelled later from the resort when a local ranger asked us where we planned to stay for the night. Responding that it would be out of town he demanded that we leave immediately, not returning before the next morning or he would have to fine us.

Not so laid back and relaxed, these Australians, when it comes to compliance and fines, eh? Coral Bay seems to be very harsh with backpackers that misuse the beach or the nearby facilities as an overnight camping spot. Anyway, we decided not to spend any money at this unfriendly area and left for our campsite a few kilometers away.


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