I'd not been freaked out by any bugs the whole trip until last night.
It would seem we picked up some passengers at the Barn Hill station (we were camped under some wonderful shady trees). Short gestation period, and then WHAM, BAM, tent with hundreds of little shield bugs in when we went to bed last night. And then thousands just now when I was brushing for my life to get the little fuckers out. They don't bite from what we can work out, but they fly and probably crawl up our noses when we're asleep. Yuck, yuck and yuck. I'll be going in search of a decent spray at a garden centre if they're still around tomorrow.
Other than the bugs, there's not a bad word to say about Barn Hill. It even had it's own one lane lawn bowling green, in similar nick to lane 4 at Dangar Island, which is pretty impressive as we don't have cattle wandering around in search of a meal on Dangar. Or seasonal cyclones coming through. Come to think of it I'm not really sure what Freddy does to ours to keep it so challenging.
Having the two nights at Barn Hill gave me the opportunity to catch up on some moustache maintenance and once the heat had died down a bit, another couple of hours fishing. I was a little reluctant to get too far into the water in case of crocs, but the only wildlife I saw was a passing turtle, and a fish flying after a smaller fish rather than my lure. No one else on the beach seemed to be having much luck either, but I didn't hear any complaining going on. Such a beautiful spot.
We ran out of beer on the Sunday so really had to push on up to Broome to restock. It was such a relief to finally get here. The drive from Port Hedland to Broome is apparently 610kms. It felt like the Nullarbor all over again.
First port of call was Maccas (I know, but it was the first one since Perth, and we couldn't stomach another Chicken Treat so soon after Port Hedland), followed by Beaurepaires for a new rim/tyre. We've given up on trying to get to the second spare under the Troopie and really need to have two spares for the remote Gibb River Road which we start next week. Luckily they had exactly what we wanted in stock and it also now means that our main spare is now exactly the same as our other wheels (75R16). Fitting the old spare into the back of the car took some work, and some cursing, but in she went, with the dives tubs stacked on top.
* Not many chances left for sunset over sea shots, so please indulge me. I just hope we get one more cracker before we head inland.
After stocking up on some beers and a few other provisions, we headed straight back out of Broome, and headed up the coast to a free campspot at Prices Point. Not much shade, but we at least had the place to ourselves (if you don't count the shield bug plague, clouds of diease carrying mosquitos, and the flies).
The fairly stiff breeze this morning didn't keep the flies away so after a hurried breakfast inside MDT we made a sharp exit and came back to Broome.
First stop this time was the famous Cable Beach, for a coffee and a swim. Air temp was about 35 degrees, water temp around 30 degrees. Main local news story was a new resident in town (a 3m saltwater croc) but with lifeguards on patrol we both felt pretty safe. Next stop was a well earned relaxing lunch at overlooking Roebuck Bay, where we are now camped. I thought we were meeting up with Rob & Woo tonight, but turns out they get here next Tuesday (oops), so we're heading out of town up to Cape Leveque for a few nights at an aboriginal run 'resort' and then back to Broome on the weekend for Staircase to the Moon.