Aussie RT Day 18-20: Cape Range National Park

Australia, WA Roadtrip — By on November 13, 2010 1:33 AM

We were starting to get the feeling that perhaps Joel wasn’t enjoying traveling with two girls. Whenever he spotted another guy, he would immediately ditch us to hang with a bloke. We kept running into a group of four he had met in Darwin that were on our same route. We weren’t too surprised when he shined his flashlight into the back of the Jeep late one night and told us “No offense girls, but I am going to take off with this other group in the morning. Thanks for giving me a lift so far, happy travels.” It sucked that he ditched us mid trip as we were counting on him to share in the costs, but it was a smart move on his part as he would now be spitting costs with five people instead of three.

In the morning Stacy and I headed into Cape Range National Park with the only man we need in our lives … Hercules! Cape Range is  home to Ningaloo Reef Wildlife Park … we absolutely loved this place! Beautiful beaches, clear turquoise water,  heaps of wildlife, fishing, great snorkeling, and cool new friends! A day in our life at Cape Range … morning snorkel, mid-day nap, afternoon snorkel, fishing at sunset!

We wanted to go fishing so we drove straight onto the beach, forgetting to lower the tires and as a result, we got bogged in the sand for the first time! After lowering the tires to 18 and getting a push and scolding from a few local guys we were free to roam the sandy beach. We forgot to buy bait in town so we were forced to fish with lures. We could see heaps of fish swimming in the clear water but none of them wanted anything to do with our lures.

The guy at the visitor center warned us that the campsites fill up fast, his favorite was Lakeside. At 10:30 am Lakeside was already full, so we decided to check out the site at T-Bone Bay. The site only had three spots, the two shady ones already taken. The nice Dutch couple lounging in the shade, told us that the rest of the park was already full and we would be smart to take the last spot at T-Bone even though it was smack in the middle of the sun. We befriended a nice Swiss guy named Ben who had landed himself a shady site and asked if he would mind if we took a nap in the shady bit behind car. He didn’t mind at all so we put our mattress under a tree in preparation for our afternoon nap that we had become accustomed to taking to avoid the hottest part of the day. After only a few minutes, heaps of kangaroos emerged from the bush, quite curious about us. When they realized we were napping, they decided to lay down and nap with us! There were five roos just chilling around us as we read our books and slept.

We saw heaps of roos and emus all over the park.

The park had amazing snorkeling only a few feet just off of shore. There is no need to hire a boat to take you out the the coral, just throw on a snorkel, jump in and a few strokes later you are swimming with heaps of fish and marveling at the beautiful coral. You can only snorkel at Oyster shack at high tide, but Turquoise Bay and Lakeside are good spots all day.

My favorite spot was by far Turquoise Bay, beautiful clear turquoise water and a really fun drift current that moves you along as you snorkel. Stacy thought it felt like a ride and said I want to go on it again!

Also staying at our campsite was Lexi (the cutest five year old I have ever met) and her dad. The two made quite the pair. We all went fishing at sunset and Lexi caught a seagull by accident and her dad caught a shark! Back at camp she amused us all with a “dancing shower” as her dad blasted electronic music as Lexi danced under the home made shower her dad had rigged to the back of his truck.

We both could have spent so much more time in Cape Range, a definite must see for anyone wanting to explore Ningaloo Reef!

To see more photos of Cape Range National Park CLICK HERE.

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