We actually ended up driving to a packaging company outside of the Perth Hills to pick up our tent. Apparently, they tried to deliver the tent and no one was there to sign, so they left it at the package delivery company for us to pick up. As soon as we got the tent to the house, I set it up in our living room! I liked the idea of camping in an Aussie made tent in the outback. So, Kody and I searched for a good National Park outside of Perth, to stay for the weekend. Yalgorup National Park sounded like the perfect place for our first night of camping in the bush. We booked our sites, $10 per person per night, at the Martins Tank campsite.
After packing the food, camping gear, and other amenities, we loaded the directions to Yalgorup. The GPS said it was about a one hour drive from Lesmurdie. On the road, it was fascinating to see all of the road names. Jandakot, Atwell, Anketell, Kwinana, even Yalgorup, the names were so different from road signs we were accustomed to seeing in the US. Many of the road names originated from Aboriginal words. I did a little research on the road names and found out that when the British came to Australia they asked Aboriginals the names of locations in order to keep the original names. Interestingly, there was some misinterpretation between hearing and spelling the words, causing some of the signs to have crazy letters and pronunciations. Anyway, the drive to Yalgorup from the Perth Hills is quick and pleasant.
After socializing at the communal fire pit, we headed back to our tent and snuggled up to try and keep warm. Kody told me that he had to go use the bathroom and then was gone for a longer period of time than I had expected. When he came back, he told me that he found a kangaroo skeleton in the woods and stopped to take pictures of it. We drunkenly made the decision to go look for kangaroos. We headed towards Martins Ferry Lake and looked around the woods and only found animal feces. After that, we called it a night, and cuddled up in the tent.
Hiking Trails or Running Trails
That morning, we woke up, ate a little breakfast and decided to get a morning run in. From what Kody had read about Martins Tank, there seemed to be a few hiking trails around the National Park. We found one and jumped on the trail hoping it would be flat and soft surface. Since Kody runs much faster than me, I found myself alone on the trail enjoying the beauties of the National Park. The trees were interesting, the ground was a reddish color, and the run just seemed to be perfect. Kody had made it back to me and told me that he saw some kangaroos just up ahead and he scared them when he ran by. I was so jealous because I had yet to see a kangaroo in Australia. We hustled to get to where Kody saw them but had no luck. When back at the campsite, I was relieved to have my training done for the day. Kody reminded me that we needed to stop at the Preston Beach grocery store, where we had bought wine the day before, to get a jar of the local honey that they were selling. Next, we ate breakfast at the Footprints Restaurant, which was delicious, and then hit the road in hopes of getting farther south.
After a few hours of driving, we made it to Busselton. I wanted to see the longest pier in Western Australia, and this is where it was located. Known as the Busselton Jetty, it is also the longest pier in the Southern Hemisphere. A jetty day pass cost $4 AUD and we purchased them in the Busselton Jetty Interpretive Center. The jetty has a train that you can pay to take you to the end and back, but we decided to save money and enjoy the walk. It is 1.8 km long, so just a little over a mile to the end. It took us about an hour to walk all the way to the end and back. At the end of the jetty there is a sign that posts directions of cities and how close they are to the end of the jetty. I made Kody take pictures of me with the sign and then we kindly asked someone to take a photo of the both of us together.
During the summer, they offer snorkeling tours of the jetty, we probably would have booked one if we were there when the waters were warmer. I would suggest walking around the museum located in the Interpretive Center. There are a lot of facts about the jetty and when it was built.
We only stayed in Busselton a few hours and then we decided to head back to the Perth Hills! Camping in Yalgorup was ideal for our first camping trip in the outback and seeing the Busselton Jetty is a memory I will never forget.