We'd said our goodbyes to Deb & Wayne the night before but managed to wave them both off to work from the window of the camper this morning, having just woke covered in bites from last night mozzie fest! I also got to say goodbye to French bulldog Poppy who had been dropped off that morning. When we left she was desperate to follow us out of the gate and it was all I could do to stop myself from smuggling her into the van & driving off but I didn't think that was a very good way of paying back our hosts for their hospitality so we left her with Deb & Wayne's younger son Bailey instead!
Having been unable to hold a koala yesterday because of the heat, we thought we'd try again today (much cooler at 24c) but because we needed to be on the road sooner rather than later and the first session wasnt until 11.30am I called them up to see if we could go an hour earlier & luckily the manager Sandra answered and said she was happy to arrange that for us seeing as it was very quiet at that time :)
After a bit of shopping and brekkie in the shopping mall at St Agnes
we set of for The Gorge Wildlife Park, Cudlee Creek (aptly named!) with me just slightly excited!
The Gorge Wildlife Park, Cudlee Creek SA
On arrival we were directed down to the holding area and shortly afterwards Bella appeared with her keeper.
I'm slightly embarrassed to say that from the second the koala was put in my arms I was in tears, I just couldn't help it, it was magical :)
We didn't get to spend long here but it's a lovely little Wildlife Park & we could tell that the staff really care about their animals.
Another thing knocked off the bucket list, we move on to the next part of our journey:
From Adelaide to Smoky Bay
Along the way...
Christmas Decs Aussie style!
Lochniel (pink lake!)
This road & the bush either side stretch as far as the eye can see! 29c at present.
Kimba - not the most interesting place but it's the first town in miles
Merry Christmas, funny!!
A change of terrain
After 8 hours of driving we were really excited to arrive at the Caravan Park at Smoky Bay. I'd chosen this site because the pitches were described as beach front but when we pulled up in to the gravel car park it appears that this was our pitch for the night!
The buildings and fences around the site wouldn't have looked out of place in a prison yard (minus only the barbed wire & maybe a bit lower!) and as far as I could tell, the only people with a potential beach view would've been the office/reception staff as that building ran parallel to the beach which was not visible from any of the pitches & not helped by all the fences
Maybe we've been spoilt by all the beautiful sites we've had so far but when you've travelled 8 hours to a specific place because you've been led to believe it's something it's not, it's frustrating! Every day is special to us & when something is described as beachfront we don't expect a car park!
It does have really posh loos though; they even play piped music while you go....😫
Despite the site being a let down, Smoky Bay is lovely.
We took a walk down the jetty just before sunset and although it was a bit chilly due to the wind blowing a hoolley, there is a lovely windbreak structure with benches at the end and it was beautiful sitting there watching the sun go down over the water :)
There is quite a large group of resident pelicans in the Bay too - there were about twenty perched on the safe swimming zone barrier & a group of six or seven down on the beach, you can just about make them out below but more close up photos to follow from the Canon.
Anyway it's time for bed now as we are hoping to make it over the border into Western Australia (WA) tomorrow and hopefully hitting the desert road or we may save that until Thursday depending how the day goes!