Little towns along the way
Trip Start Jul 25, 2012
136Trip End Ongoing
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This part of the journey will take me from Katanning to Broomehill, Tambellup, Gnowangerup and then Borden.
The weather is still overcast, with a few drops of rain to dampen my spirits, but at least if it gets any heavier,I have wipers that work now.
Broomehill here I come.
Well that didn't take long, as it is only 26 kms down the track.
The sun was trying desperately to break through the heavy cloud cover as I drove in to town and I was hoping it would bring some warmth as the lousy weather has dropped the temperature down about 15 degrees. Can't believe I am actually wearing jumpers and socks in November...a far cry from the 38+ I experienced in the N.T. not so many weeks ago.
First thing on the list is of course the 'doggy stop'. On with the sexy hat and fly netting and brave the sticky, obnoxious flies.
That done it's now time to explore this quint little 'ghost town', which was once a thriving community with stores, an Inn, Blacksmiths and dwellings. There is a Museum, but you have to make an appointment to see it... prior arrangement can get you a guided tour of the town, so needless to say I just took off.
The town of Broomehill owes its creation to the Great Southern Railway, which was completed in 1889. The railway runs from Beverley to Albany. Broomehill is named after Sir Frederick Napier Broome (1842–96) who was then the Governor of Western Australia.The town site was gazetted by the Western Australian Land Company in 1890, which was recognised by the state government in 1897.A group of settlers from the now extinct town of Eticup moved to the present site of Broomehill to help establish a township after the construction of the railway was completed. These settlers included the Withams, the Walshes, and the Curnows. These three families worked hard to establish the early structures. In 1892, a Police Station and Post Office were also established.The population of the town was 72 (37 males and 35 females) in 1898The economy of the area is dependent on wheat and sheep farming although recently farmers have diversified into viticulture and aquaculture in the form of Barramundi farming.
Tambellup had little to excite me, an old railway water tank an old school that dates back 100 years but sadly, has been modernised... and of course a museum that was closed.
The Old Water Tank
Gnowangerup was the next town in the guide.
The name Gnowangerup is derived from the Aboriginal word 'Ngow', meaning Malleefowl. For thousands of years the plains were hunting grounds for the Goreng Noongars - evidenced by stone implements still found along the creeks. The last full blood Noongar died in 1965, however descendants are still in the area. While some settlement in the region took place in the second half of the 19th century it was around 1905 that the Land Department was requested to survey the area, now known as Gnowangerup.
While driving up and down the road looking for the sites I was obliged to stop on the side of the road and get my bearings...Oh dear! Next minute this lady is walking towards the van and asked me if I needed any help, to which I answered just checking my map. But that didn't deter her as she was a trainee for the Community Resource Centre and started on a spiel that was to last for almost half an hour, by which time I had heard all I needed to know about the adjoining towns and the little town of Gnowangerup...
Time for another 'dog stop' a quick lunch and on to Borden for a night at a 'freebie'.
Once again the Camps book says this has toilets and a shower, well I drove around for about 10 minutes and finally asked the local council workers where to find the spot and they said 'it's right behind you', oh! really. Turned out to be the local sports ground and there were toilets and showers, but locked and secured. Well I'm here now, so make the most of it.
According to the Tourist Guide there is a real Whale's willy mounted on the wall of the Tavern which has to be seen to be believed...once again I'll never know as the place was closed when I got there and closed when I left. I guess if you've seen one willy...you've seen them all, they just come in different shapes and sizes. lol!