Cape Riche and return to Albany

I made notes at Camp Riche as we didn’t have enough of a signal to upload anything so I’ve included day and dates in the blog.

Cape Riche campground Friday 13th January, 2023

Yesterday at Cheynes Beach Caravan Park was a bit of a frantic morning with packing up, getting our washing in, and emptying and filling tanks. We bought hot drinks at the cafe before leaving the caravan park and went for a drive to check out the beach.

Then drove to Wellstead where we checked out the community centre and library. I bought honey and freshly baked bread. The bread was a bit of disaster as it wasn’t cooked through. It was obviously done in a domestic bread maker. I always choose a longer setting as I know it can be a problem. But, the honey is local and delicious.

The Cape Riche campground costs $20 per night and has flushing toilets and a cold, but enclosed, shower. The camping spaces are marked out and we had to vacate by 10.00 a.m. We have driven around to a day use camping spot to finish off our washing, etc.

Now we can relax and enjoy being here a bit longer. The beach here is short and rather rocky with lots of seaweed. You can avoid the seaweed, but we keep comparing beaches to the lovely sheltered and clean beach at East Bay, and we’ve not seen anything to compare with it. We walked over to the back beach, a walk suggested by our camp host, but even that didn’t seem as nice. The walk was very sandy and much tougher than it should have been and the beach sand wasn’t as firm as at East Bay, you can see where this is going.

At least our spot at the Cheyennes Beach Caravan Park had view, both of the ocean and the bushfire in front and heathland and rocks to the rear, plus heaps of kangaroos who stuck around for the camera.

The bushfire appeared to be mostly over by the time we left yesterday morning. On the way to Wellstead there was a section marked as having smoke limiting visibility, but at the time we came through it was clear. We saw a couple of fire trucks leaving, probably heading for the Donnybrook region where there has been a much more serious fire threatening lives and homes.

Stephen was wandering along the road and discovered that a couple of better campsites had opened up. So we decided to stay and paid for another night. It’s been a pretty warm day, but I felt too lazy to go in the water, what with dealing with wet bathers. We waited until after 4.00 p.m. when the sun is less intense to go down to the beach.

Saturday 14th January, 2023

We really enjoyed our stay in the second campsite at Cape Richie. We were closer to the sound of the waves for sleeping. It was lovely being closer to the beach for walks. I helped, I think, with a little fishing dinghy as a man and his daughter were trying to put wheels on to take it out of the water and up the beach. The waves kept pushing it away from him and the daughter was busy trying to keep it in place, so I stood on the opposite side for the placement of each wheel clamp.

It was much quieter on Friday due to fewer people camping and no swimming lessons. That contributed to our enjoyment. We had another utility camper next to us, one of the Explorer ones, which always seem more glamorous than the Suncampers. They have a fibreglass hull like a boat so they don’t need harsh edges. They are more expensive, of course.

On the way out of the campground we went to try to find a lookout walk. We started walking the wrong way (back to the campground) so were just able to check the beginning of the walk before heading off.

I now quite enjoy gravel roads as we use high range 4WD, which feels safe, and I feel happy driving at about 60kph which smoothes out the bumps. I think I’ve already said that we couldn’t do this in our Fiat camper as it was too jarring, especially if the corrugations went from shallow to deeper, as they do. This camper handles it beautifully. It is now appropriately covered in red dust!

We had quite a shopping expedition when we arrived back in Albany. We stopped first at Wellstead to empty the toilet, then drove pretty much straight through, just over 100kms. Our steps are still sticking and although I tried the trick of putting the button in the outward position it didn’t release. We’ve been relying on the small plastic step we use to get into bed and it’s beginning to deteriorate, with a long crack and bits falling off. The mission was to find another little folding step, just the same. After going into BCF, Anaconda, Bunnings, Spotlight, another unidentifiable shop I was able to find one finally at an auto store. The BCF was the only shop at a different place and we were able to get mini pizzas from a place next door for our lunch.

I spent money at Anaconda and Bunnings as well, so the long search was expensive, but has resulted in getting a step that looks the same, just a different colour.

When we put the Sherwood in to have the second battery connected and our new storage box installed I will ask them to remove and reinstall the steps. The problem arose back in Port Hedland when they were taken off due to no 12v power and then reinstalled.

Sunday 15th January, 2023

We are at the Golf Links car park, the only camper here. We’ve booked for two nights and it was good to have a peaceful place to go yesterday after our marathon shopping expedition. We are not sure how much longer we will have in Albany and it partly depends on whether Matt has surfing this coming Saturday. I’d like to be back to see it. Otherwise we will still be heading back this week, probably arriving Sunday evening, as we have things we want to do in Perth next week. I’m sorry to be leaving the cooler weather with access to lovely beaches, but it is a sign of a good holiday if you don’t really want it to end.

A little video from East Bay