Posts Tagged With: Manning Gorge

Manning Gorge

DSC_0006So, getting back to the Gibb River Road now – we are only about half way along it and there are some beautiful places we still want to share with you!  After stopping at Bell Gorge, we set up camp for two nights at Manning Gorge.  This was a really nice place to camp with heaps of campsites and the campground was quite big so if you didn’t mind a walk to the amenities you could find a campsite away from everybody else. The amenities were generator operated hot water showers – so you could only get hot showers for an hour or so in the morning and two hours at night.  The generator was a little noisy but the toilets and showers were nice and clean.  It was a little smelly though so I was glad we didn’t camp near the amenities.  Most of the sites were quite shady which was nice but they were all very dry and dusty when we were there.

The best thing about the manning gorge campground was the river and sandy river bed right near the campsite which you could swim in – it was lovely!  A great spot that was cool and shady and the water was so nice for swimming.

Swimming spot at Manning Gorge campground

Swimming spot at Manning Gorge campground

Trying to capture the perfect reflections on the water.

Trying to capture the perfect reflections on the water.

These photos were taken just after a pre sunset swim

These photos were taken just after a pre sunset swim

Lovely

Lovely

Reflections

Reflections

Sun set photo

Sun set photo

Matt & I having a swim

Matt & I having a swim

After arriving fairly late in the afternoon we only had time to have a quick swim and set up camp, so the next morning we headed off to tackle the walk to Manning Gorge.  This walk was probably one of the toughest we have done.  It was only about a 3km walk in (so 6km’s return) but it is a very open walk, so very hot and dusty!!  We all found this walk a pretty long one and agree we should have started earlier in the day (we headed off at about 10am).  To start the walk you must cross the swimming hole at the river and to help keep your feet dry you can use a little ‘pull -along’ tinnie.  The kids loved it and we had several creek crossing in the boat during our couple of days here!

The little 'pull-a-long' tinnie which you can use to cross the river to the other side without getting your shoes wet before your hike!

The little ‘pull-a-long’ tinnie which you can use to cross the river to the other side without getting your shoes wet before your hike!

Pulling the tinnie across the river.

Pulling the tinnie across the river.

Heading off to walk in to Manning Gorge

Heading off to walk in to Manning Gorge

The long, hot, dusty walk to Manning Gorge

The long, hot, dusty walk to Manning Gorge

Pretty nice 'Gibb River Road' scenery on our walk into the gorge

Pretty nice ‘Gibb River Road’ scenery on our walk into the gorge

We were all pretty happy to finally reach the gorge after about an hour and a half of walking!  It was worth the walk though and we were lucky enough to have the place to ourselves for some of the time we were there.  We spent a couple of hours down there and I had packed enough snack food to keep us all happy, so it was a very relaxing way to spend the hottest part of the day before we tackled the long walk back!

Hooray - Manning Gorge at last!

Hooray – Manning Gorge at last!

Manning Gorge - lots of people jump into the water off the top of the waterfall but we weren't game enough to have a go!

Manning Gorge – lots of people jump into the water off the top of the waterfall but we weren’t game enough to have a go!

Swim time!

Swim time!

The water was cold but very refreshing after the hot walk in!

The water was cold but very refreshing after the hot walk in!

Looking out from under the waterfall

Looking out from under the waterfall 

Easy way to spend the day

Easy way to spend the day

We found a nice shallow swimming spot for the kids

We found a nice shallow swimming spot for the kids

The kids wrestling in the water!

The kids wrestling in the water!

Washing the sand off our feet to get our shoes on for the long walk back

Washing the sand off our feet to get our shoes on for the long walk back

Manning Gorge is about the half way point along the Gibb River Road and we could easily have spent a few more days relaxing and swimming here if we had longer – we’d definitely recommend a couple of nights stay here and the Barnett River Roadhouse was just up the road so you could grab some essential supplies, fuel and ice creams very easily! Aaargh – I just want to go back now!DSC_0223

Categories: Camping, WA Camping | Tags: , | 3 Comments

Bell Gorge

DSC_0091Right, back to a post about the trip!  At the rate we are going you guys will all be still reading posts about our trip twelve months after we finished it!

After two nights camping at Windjana Gorge and checking out Tunnel Creek we headed off to get a few kilometres of the Gibb River Road under our tyres.  We were a bit nervous about what the road conditions would be like, but we were pleasantly surprised to find this stretch of road – about 1oo kilometres from Windjana Gorge to Bell Gorge – was pretty good.  Corrugated and mostly dirt but it looked like it had been very recently graded so we travelled along with no problems.  It was hard to bypass Lennard Gorge and the Mt Hart Homestead, but as we only had a week we had to be selective with where we stopped on the Gibb. We had decided that this was just to be a ‘practice run’ Gibb River Road trip and we will come back and do it properly one day!!

This stretch of the Gibb was quite scenic – with some lovely spots to stop and check out the views.

Lookout view Gibb River Road

Lookout view Gibb River Road

Peter Prado and Karen Camper on the Gibb River Road

Peter Prado and Karen Camper on the Gibb River Road

We had decided that Bell Gorge would be our lunch time stop, but we didn’t realise that it was actually 39km in to the Gorge along the access road off the Gibb River Road.  This road was actually pretty rough and there are a couple of creek crossings along the way which we didn’t know about either.  They were quite shallow when we went through so no problems and a bit of excitement for us as they were Karen Camper’s first water crossings!

Creek Crossing on Access Road into Bell Gorge

Creek Crossing on Access Road into Bell Gorge

Peter Prado and Karen Camper handled them too easy!

Peter Prado and Karen Camper handled them too easy!

We unhitched Karen Camper at the entrance to the Bell Gorge Campsite (called Silent Grove) as we thought the road was getting quite rough and we weren’t sure what parking there would be at the Gorge entrance. We were really glad we did this as the road did get more corrugated (it was another 10km’s from the campsite to the gorge) and the car park at the Gorge is really quite small – it would have been difficult to park the camper down there.  The Silent Grove campsite looked quite nice – very dry and dusty but some shade and amenities so you could easily have a few nights there.  We then had a quick bite of lunch and headed off for the short 3km return walk into the gorge – yes dragging a few reluctant kids again for another walk!

Back of the car lunch preparation

Back of the car lunch preparation

Off to walk in to Bell Gorge

Off to walk in to Bell Gorge

It was an easy walk in to the Gorge although it was quite hot walking in the middle of the day!  We were glad to have a swim when we got there!  The water in the swimming hole at the bottom of the water falls was freezing!!  But we did all get in eventually – even me!  Be warned though – the edge going in to the water is very slippery and slimy – we all had big slips going in!!  The pools at the top of the gorge are really lovely and not as cold as the bottom pool – they would make a great spot to waste away a few hours soaking in the sun and water.  The climb down to the water fall pool is very steep but our kids made it no problems – their walking skills have definitely improved heaps over the duration of the trip!

Jack, Tobes and Lex at the top of Bell Gorge

Jack, Tobes and Lex at the top of Bell Gorge

Looking over the edge at Bell Gorge

Looking over the edge at Bell Gorge

Walking down to the waterfall pool Bell Gorge

Walking down to the waterfall pool Bell Gorge

The lovely top pools at Bell Gorge

The lovely top pools at Bell Gorge

Having a swim in the freezing water at Bell Gorge

Having a swim in the freezing water at Bell Gorge

When we first arrived at the waterfall pool at Bell Gorge there was a tour bus of people there but they left shortly after we arrived (I’m sure we didn’t scare them off – we didn’t smell that bad!) and we had the place pretty much to ourselves – it was heaven!  We were definitely glad that we got to see this spot!  After about an hour swimming and relaxing we headed back to pick up the camper and push on to our campsite for the night at Manning Gorge which was about another 80km’s along the Gibb River Road once we had got back out off the 40km stretch of the Bell Gorge access road.  Once again we had to reluctantly drive right past Adcock Gorge and Charnley River Station, with a promise of ‘next time’.  We stopped at the Barnett Roadhouse and purchased our camping permit for the next two nights camping at Manning Gorge.  It was of course ‘ice-cream o’clock’ and we thought we all deserved one so we bought those and a souvenir stubby cooler too!

Barnett Roadhouse

Barnett Roadhouse

Yum - Icecreams!

Yum – Icecreams!

Our time at Manning Gorge will be our next post.  So, who has stopped at the places we missed along the way from Windjana Gorge to Manning Gorge?  C’mon then, make us jealous, tell us what did we miss out on???

 

Categories: Camping, WA Camping | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

So much to tell you!

I am madly trying to get this post out while we have reception here in Kununurra – we have sooooooo much we want to share with you all and after two weeks without any phone or internet reception – we have heaps to say!!!  We have just finished a very quick week on the Gibb River Road and are in Kununurra to refuel and restock on food before we spend our final week on the road heading back to Far North Qld.  I am sitting in the park ‘watching’ the kids in the playground and Matt is on the phone trying to get a few things organised for our arrival in Mareeba in ten days time.  From here – we are just going to drive each day until we decide to stop – lots of long days on the road coming up.  We are all feeling a bit sad that we did our last gorge hike at Emma Gorge this morning.  The last few weeks on the road have been amazing – so, so, so good!  Fingers crossed we get a bit of internet reception over the next few nights so I can pump a few posts out!

But, in the meantime, I thought I would give you a quick update on what we have been doing since I last did a proper blog entry about our time in Katherine Gorge.

From Katherine we headed over the border into new territory for all of us – Western Australia – very exciting!  We spent the first two days in Kununurra (yep – we have come full circle as that is where we are today!) getting Peter Prado serviced and new tyres.

Boab Tree in Kunnunurra

Boab Tree in Kunnunurra

Then we headed out to Lake Argyle which was spectacular!

Sunset boat cruise on Lake Argyle

Sunset boat cruise on Lake Argyle

From Lake Argyle we pushed over to Broome (you saw our little video of our time there – so good!).

My photographer boy in Broome!

My photographer boy in Broome!

We then spent a week camping at Middle Lagoon and exploring Cape Leveque which was just so beautiful and relaxing!

Quality time at Middle Lagoon

Quality time at Middle Lagoon

Epic sandcastle Matt & the kids built at Middle Lagoon

Epic sandcastle Matt & the kids built at Middle Lagoon

One Arm Point - beautiful!

One Arm Point – beautiful!

Cape Leveque

Cape Leveque

We dragged ourselves away from Middle Lagoon and after talking to lots of other families while we were staying there – we decided to do a quick one week trip along the Gibb River Road to commence our journey back to the East Coast.  The Gibb River Road was not quite the ‘highway’ everybody said it was – saying it was in very good condition – it was still pretty rough but we have had a great time!

Freshwater Crododiles at Windjiana Gorge

Freshwater Crododiles at Windjiana Gorge

Tunnell Creek was definitely a highlight of the trip - amazing!

Tunnell Creek was definitely a highlight of the trip – amazing!

Bell Gorge

Bell Gorge

Manning Gorge

Manning Gorge

Branco's Lookout - El Questro Station

Branco’s Lookout – El Questro Station

And now it is time to hit the road home.  More detailed blog posts on all the fun we have had very soon – fingers crossed for reception tonight!

 

 

 

Categories: Camping, WA Camping | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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