So what is all about? Well... hopefully, by the time we are done, it will be a comprehensive journal about a family of 5 who have travelled around Australia to see the sights and also do some volunteer work around the country! In Mid 2010 we started thinking about what it would take to fulfil a life-long dream... We wanted to bundle up our 3 kids, pack-up the house, jump in the car and hit the road - probably for about 12 months. It sounds so simple ... At the start of January 2013, after almost 15 months on the road; we finally completed Our Big Aussie Road Trip. We hope that you enjoyed following our adventures, trials and tribulations as much as we enjoyed having them!

07 March, 2012


We arrived in Pemberton quite early on Sunday the 19th Feb, so we booked into the Caravan Park.  We wanted to stay overnight in Pemberton because we had heard it was a really nice area and we wanted to have a good look - we also needed to pickup some mail on the Monday.  We went and had a look at the main street (which was very quiet because it was a Sunday) and the kids had a brief play at the park in town, and a good climb all over on an old steam train on display whilst Liz visited to the Laundromat because the caravan park's laundry was under renovations :(

After a quick visit to the Visitor Information Centre (which are such a good resources for Travellers like ourselves) we headed to find some of the 'climbing trees' in the area.  The Most Famous tree in the area (the Gloucester Tree) was once used as a Fire lookout because the view from the top of the tree is spectacular, and allows one to see any fires that are burning in the vicinity.

Starting to climb the Gloucester Tree

We found the Gloucester tree and it is definitely a very tall tree!  Josh, Natalie and Sam were all very keen to climb to the top, but these trees are definitely not climbing trees for kids!! So while Liz and the kids battled the relentless attacks of march flies at the base of the tree, Mike climbed the 61 metres to the top (along the steel pegs hammered into the tree trunk) along with plenty of other tourists doing the same thing.  It was a very nice view from the top, it wasn't too scary, but was a little unnerving when the wind swayed the whole treetop from side to side.

Climbing the Gloucester Tree near Pemberton

Josh would have loved to climb to the very top

The view from the top of the Gloucester Tree

After lunch we drove to the second (of three) climbing trees in the area - The Dave Evans Bicentennial Tree.  Again, Liz and the kids had to fight off hundreds of biting March Flies while Mike climbed past the 25 metre platform to the 75 metre platform at the top of the tree.  It was another breathtaking 360 degree view of the area (and not quite as crowded as the Gloucester Tree).

The Bicentennial Tree

Later that afternoon, we drove to the Beedleup National Park to look at the Beedleup Falls.  It is the wrong time of year for the falls to be in full flow (most rainfall occurs in winter), so the falls were only a trickle, but we had a nice walk through the National Park and along a suspension bridge which the kids enjoyed as they bounced along to the other side.

The Suspension bridge in Beedleup National Park
Part of life in the caravan!
The kids are now used to doing the dishes...
but they all want to scrub! so they take turns to scrub and dry. 
On Monday Morning, we didn't need to go to the post office (because we'd managed to pickup the post the day before) so we did some school work and checked out of the Caravan Park at the standard 10am checkout time.  We drove to the rest stop that is at the Diamond Tree (the third of the climbing trees in the area) and Mike climbed this tree whilst the Kids and Liz waited at the bottom.  This tree was Mike's Favourite tree because there was no one else there, and it was another great view from the top.  We hadn't finished our school work for the day, so after Mike had climbed the Diamond Tree we finished our schoolwork inside the caravan (parked in the car park at the Diamond Tree) to get some relief from the March flies.

Climbing the Diamond Tree
When we were planning where to drive to for Monday Night, our Trusty "Camps 5" Book gave us a campsite at 'Grimwade' which is an abandoned township in a forestry reserve, so we went to look for our campsite for the night.  It was a bit difficult to find, but thanks to the help of an old couple, we found the campsite and we parked right next to a dam that had crystal clear water (until the silt at the bottom was stirred up), so because it was such a hot day, we went for a late afternoon swim in the Dam to cool off.  Grimwade was such a still and quiet place.  We thought it was a beautiful spot to camp for a night.  It would have been great to have a fire, but there is a total fire ban in WA between November and April to help stop bush fires, so we'll have to wait until after April to start having open fires again.

Swimming in the dam at Grimwade

Grimwade Dam

We left the Grimwade campsite on Tuesday morning, and headed for Bunbury.  On the way to Bunbury, we passed through Donnybrook, which has the largest free outdoor playground in Australia.  We decided that we had to stop (even though the temperature was in the high 30's) and let the kids have a play for a while after we ate lunch.  The kids didn't play too long (it was just a bit too hot) and so we headed on to Bunbury and booked into the Caravan park.

The Donnybrook Playground

No comments: