Kimberley Capers...Lake Argyle
Trip Start Apr 05, 2011
79Trip End Nov 15, 2012
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We were escorted to a well shaded site ensuring the shade would be maximised in the afternoon, it was such a refreshing change to have this level of service, we were blown away by their hospitality.
The Ord River was dammed in the late sixties with completion of the project in the early seventies. This has created an inland sea; the biggest manmade lake in the southern hemisphere. We were staying in what used to be the workers village which has now been turned into a holiday park and sitting atop a hill it offers magnificent views over the lake and surrounding inlets
We watched a DVD on the making of the dam and it was a classic. Clearly there was no OH&S back then. The men were hard at work, bare chested wearing only a pair of 'stubbies' (they were a popular brand of shorts for anyone who wasn’t around in the seventies!) and sandals. Every now and again we caught a glimpse of a sun hat… the explosive charges were lit with a cigarette, oh how times have changed!
We joined a sunset boat cruise out on the lake and whilst we were taking in the crocodiles, euro’s and variety of birdlife surrounding us, Rod recognised the gentleman sitting in front of us. Rod and Bill served in the Navy together and way back in 1987 Bill actually gave Rod and another friend Nick a lift to and from work. With them both keeping in touch with different people from that era (with some cross over) it was nice to hear what old friends were up to. Just another example of what a small world it is.
The sun set majestically over Lake Argyle, the fiery orange ball reflecting off the dark waters of the lake before descending behind a mountain ridge. Here in the middle of this massive lake the boat sat still while people took the opportunity to jump in for a swim
Back at our camp we were delighted to find we could sit outside and enjoy the mild evening devoid of the bugs which had driven us inside whilst we were at Kununurra. This was all too good; we must stay another night!
What I have so far failed to mention is the awesome swimming pool… An infinity pool set atop the hill, it offers sweeping views over Lake Argyle and her many islands. It is simply one of the most beautiful settings for a pool of this design. It really made us feel like we were at one with the lake. Needless to say we enjoyed countless swims there during our stay never tiring of the view.
We spent our additional day washing the car and caravan as they were both a shade of red from all the dust we had been collecting along the way. With most of the countryside we had traversed parched and desperately awaiting the wet, here at Lake Argyle they were almost begging us to use the water!
We found it ironic that whist the Ord River was dammed to provide irrigation water for the crops around Kununurra, the town itself remains on bore water, unable to take advantage of all the beautiful fresh water in Lake Argyle because of a grass which lines the river banks and contaminates the water as it makes its way to town
After dinner, Bill, his partner Ali and friend Ronnie joined us for a few drinks and a lot of reminiscing. As always it is so nice to catch up with old friends.
As we traveled the stunning drive out of Lake Argyle we knew that in half an hour or so we would be leaving Western Australia behind us. We have so enjoyed every part of our time in the west. Catching up with friends, the coastal scenery, kayaking, snorkeling, swimming, the station stays, the mining towns. Over the five months we have seen and learnt so much, even got ourselves a suntan!
Highlights of Lake Argyle:
- Catching up with an old friend
- Awesome infinity pool
- Sunset cruise on Lake Argyle
- Having an abundance of water and being able to use as much as we could!