We managed to get another campsite this morning, still in Kurrajong, so we are ok for tonight. The campground is really nice – 8 little sections partitioned off from each other and all only 80m from the beach! The beach here is not much to look at, but we are very close to the beaches where you can snorkel.
We headed into Exmouth this morning to get water, fuel and gas. We had nice coffee at the café and also ended up buying snorkelling gear – rather than hiring it.
Once we got back to camp. We quickly got ready for the beach and headed down to Turquoise Bay. There are two different sections there – Drift and Bay. We went to Drift. Once you get down to the beach, you head about 300m south and swim out to the reef (only 20m off shore). There is quite a strong current that takes you north along the reef, so you can snorkel but you don't really have to swim. It was really relaxing and enjoyable – there were heaps of different types of corals to see and lots of fish. Matt even saw a blue-fin tuna. (Quote from Matt – "Big bastard"!)
We spent a while lying on the beach because it was glorious out there. We also wandered over to the Bay section, which would have been great for kids. It’s a lot more sheltered – less wind and less current.
On the way back to the campground, we decided to check out Yardie Creek. It turns out that there is an unpaved road heading east from the National Park. We thought this would be a good option, so that we don’t have to drive right around the cape again. There is one tidal river crossing though so we have to make sure we cross at low tide. We checked out the crossing at 1 hour before afternoon low tide and found it was just a trickle of water. And the low tide in the morning is supposed to be even lower so we should be fine.
Back at the van, we finally cracked out the shower tent and had beautiful refreshing showers with our Coleman Hot Water Service. It was luxury!!
We basically spent the whole day driving to Cape Range. As the name suggests, it is a cape, with Exmouth on the east coast and Cape Range National Park on the west coast. To get to the National Park, you have to drive up the east coast, round the tip and then down the west coast. There are campgrounds right on the beach in the National Park that we were hoping to stay in. We rang ahead at 2.30pm to see if they had any sites free and they said they had a few. Unfortunately, it took us another hour and a half to get there and it turns out the Visitors Centre closes at 3.45pm! We decided to drive into one of the campgrounds to see if they had any spare spots or if they knew of any other spare spots. They didn't have any, but they radioed around and one place had a spot (Kurrajong). When we go there, it turned out it was just the day use parking area. The guy said that we were welcome to camp there overnight and that he was bound to have a spot free in the morning. Sounded good to us!