Date 21st August 2011
On a perfect Sunday in the dying days of winter 2011, Shaun & Nicole, Colin & Carol, Russell & Jacquie, Kevin, Peter & Belinda, Mick & Kim with Simon & Zara, Chris & Kat and with Mike & Clare leading, met in a car park in the heart of Bullsbrook. With Colin & Carol volunteering to be tail end Charlie our first stop was across the road at the local convenience, home to one unique metal cow. The convoy then meandered north along the back roads of Bullsbrook, pausing only where the bitumen gave way to a well maintained gravel road. This marked our entry into the hills close to the Avon Valley, where the convoy engage 4WD high, as the gravel could be quite slippery. Around 10:30, down by a creek under a stand of gum trees we stopped for morning tea. Out came the cakes and drinks and we gathered for a quick 15 minute chat. We then headed east and entered the Julimar Conservation Park. After the bushfires that raced through this part of the Park a couple of years earlier, it was clear that the bush was recovering well, with abundant new growth covering the blackened countryside and, as a Spring bonus, patches of yellow and white wildflowers brighten the surrounding landscape. The convoy meandered along at a slow but constant pace as drivers easily navigated the twists and turns of the bush track. The dry weather had reduced the amount of water on the track, so the muddy sections were few and easily traversed. Around 11:30 we arrived at Cooks road; the \”St Georges Terrace\” of Julimar, where we turned left and then right after passing over Julimar Creek. Briefly visiting this popular area some of the convoy successfully ascending one of the hilly trails to the west, with two participants descending the same trail on their return. Noon saw the convoy settled down to a lunch break along the banks of the Julimar creek. With two couples of our convoy recently returning; one from a trip along the Gibb River Road; and another from a return visit to the UK; there was plenty to chat about. An hour later, we packed up and hit the not so dusty trail, heading west on Cooks road again. At this time, the convoy came alive on the radio, with a few laughs and a couple of jokes to pass the time. A first for the trip leader was seeing a small echidna in the wild nonchalantly meander across the track. Did you see that! The convoy wheeled north off Cooks road emerging beside a paddock in the middle of the Park. Shortly after, a large solitary Emu was seen careening down the fence-line then darting across the track only to disappear into the bush. Did you see that one? The convoy later turned left onto a narrowing track, with a lot of twisting and turning between the trees. A muddy patch saw 4WD re-engaged briefly, but with the convoy steadily climbing west out of the valley. The members were quiet on the radio now, admitting later that they had been concentrating on threading their vehicles through this tight obstacle course. The track gave way to open pastures and green fields which marked the official exit from the Julimar Conservation Park. After a brief transit, the not so muddy convoy arrived at the new Bindoon Bakehaus, ending the day\’s trip. Mike & Clare thank you for joining us on this trip to Julimar and we hope you had a memorable day . . . keep the mud on the outside!