We were going to stay in Esperance but Wiki camps mentions Gibson Soak. Gibson is about 40 k out of Esperance. There is a large area beside the local pub. The owner lets people bush camp. There was already a van in the lot and as we parked up they came to talk to us. They informed us that it was a toss up between the noise of the road and the noise of the trains.
We looked around to see where the train line was. “Just over near the tree most people miss them if you don’t know where to look. Just wait until this evening when the back packers come in late. They always park over there. Then in the morning you will see most of them have moved.” He laughed as he was telling us “How many trains are there in a night?” “One at 7pm, 2am and 6am” “I guess we will have an early start then.”
We heard the one at 7 o’clock but nothing after that. (We did see some backpackers pull in late to set up for the night and then find them somewhere else in the morning.)
We left the van at Gibson and traveled into Esperance. Esperance is said to be named after a French ship (L’Espérance meaning hope). Just before you enter the town there is a lake. The Pink Lake. Funny name to call a lake I know but the name comes from the fact that the lake turns pink. Don’t ask me to tell you why, it has something to do with alga and dunalietta salina and bacterium halobacterium cutirubrum etc. etc. There are other pink lakes around the world. The one just out of Geraldton WA is a farm for the Dunaliella to be used in food colouring. We drove around the lake but for us it didn’t look very pink.
We walked around town and had a look at the jetty. We hadn’t been there long when a verbal argument broke out with some of the locals. We didn’t stick around to find out who won.
The next day we decided to drive out to Lucky Bay. On the way is Stonehenge. Esperance Stonehenge is based on the original one, as it would have looked like 3500 years ago. There are 137 stones of Esperance pink granite. The 10 trilithon stones (which are in a horseshoe pattern) weigh between 38 – 50 tones each, they stand with 18 tonne lintels to a height of 8 metres. Inside of the trilithon horseshoe stands another horseshoe of 19 blue stone. The Altar stone weighs 7 tonnes alone and lies in front of the tallest trilithon stones. The structure is aligned with the summer solstice sunrise. The station stones are positioned on this line to allow the sunrays to pass through to the altar. The summer solstice is on the longest day of the year 22rd December. The sunset on the winter solstice, which is the shortest day of the year 21 June, this is the same line as the summer solstice sunrise. (Yer, I did read the pamphlet they gave us.)
We had been told to drive past because Stonehenge wasn’t that interesting but we decided to go in to have a look. We were amazed at the structure. To look at how big and heavy the stone were and to think the people building the original one all by hand. We spent about an hour just walking around it marveling at it and I wished I knew more about the first one.
After our walk down an up-dated version of history we head off to Cape Le Grand National Park and Lucky Bay. Lucky Bay has been voted to have the whitest beach in Australia if not the world. I had read the sand on the beach was so clean it squeaked. They were right, the beach did squeak sometime as you walked along it. Yes I did the kid thing and kept making the sand squeak. Adrian just looked at me. Hey it was fun.
Another thing Lucky Bay is well known for is the Kangaroos that live around the beach. While we were there one came bouncing down the beach. Adrian went to give it a pat. He looked at Adrian’s hand and when he realized there wasn’t anything in it for him he wasn’t interested. There were signs everywhere saying “don’t feed the animal” but clearly not everyone reads them.
After I had stopped playing with the sand, we went to a picnic area for lunch. The picnic area was enclosed with shrubs. As we started to eat some birds came probably hoping for some scraps. I know the Willy Wagtail (Black and white bird) but the other one, I think is a White-cheeked Honeyeater. It won’t be a New Holland Honeyeater, which is similar in colour as they are only found in the lower part of new South Wales and Tasmania. (I hope I sound very smart as I have a bird app now but if I am wrong please let me know. Some of the birds do look alike)
As we started to pack up more kangaroos camp bouncing down the track. They stopped to see if we had anything for them and when we didn’t they moved onto the next person. They were not impressed with any of us.