We left Perth on Monday in our little camper van, heading south for Busselton, on the coast. It was a good first day on the road, not too far and the caravan park was the best I have ever seen: spotlessly clean with great facilities, a shady spot for the camper and a good ocean beach across the road. The temperature dropped from the high 30s of the previous week to the comfortable mid 20s.
The camper is a ten-year-old Toyota van conversion with 530,000 km on the odometer. We rented from a budget rental operator. The van rattles and shakes, driving at 100 km/h feels like 130, and the gear shift feels like a spoon in a bowl of jelly. You get what you pay for, but it is fine–the bed is comfortable, everything more or less works, it is fun to cook our own meals and caravan parks are more social than hotels.
Tuesday we headed to Yallingup via cape Naturaliste. This is the most western part of Australia. We paused in Dunsborough where we bought some window screen and rope to improvise a (very clever) fly screen for the side door of the camper.
Wednesday we stayed a second night in Yallingup, spending most of the day walking a section of the Cape to Cape track, a 140km hiking trail along the coast that takes about a week to walk. It is spectacular scenery with almost empty white sand beaches, blue-green ocean, big surf, intricate rock formations and thick low bushland. Unfortunately it also has flies. The flies don’t bite, but they love to land on your face, fly into your ears and crawl up your nose. Gail gave us fly nets to wear before we left Perth; they saved our sanity and made it possible to enjoy the walk.