To Esperence and
Return by Falco

Mediterranean blue waters and fantastically sculptured dunes

We spent the next day on the property northwest of Esperence with our friends Margaret and Keith, then departed to fly home the following day with a somewhat inclement forecast of a trough ahead of us. Initially the weather wasn't bad, and we refuelled at Caiguna after a couple of diversions to look at the mountain of Cape le Grand and some more colossal dunes.

Life's a beach, and then you die

Then back along the coast, sunny and warm but with increasing cloud-climbing up, then down to avoid it. Our plan was to refuel and overnight at Ceduna, but as we approached the weather deteriorated rapidly. Glimpses of brown paddocks and the sea in rain and ever-decreasing visibility. We descended to seven hundred then five hundred feet above ground with lower cloud ahead. At seven miles from Ceduna we had to turn back. Ian's out-of-date instrument rating would not have helped as we would not have become visual at the minimum descent altitude.

The surf beachs of Esperance are breeding grounds for the Southern Right Whales

We picked up the Eyre Highway and followed it forty miles back to the little town of Penong and spent the night in a small square room in an old hotel. We did get a drink and a good meal.

On the ground at Penong -- a tiny town, but relieved to get there

It rained all night, and we slushed around on the clay strip (covered with white snails) and set off in marginal conditions in turbulence beneath a ragged cloud-base of five hundred feet in rain. The weather looked better ahead, and we refuelled at Ceduna and got to Port Augusta which was sunny, with little trouble.

A cove in the cliffs. No swimmers in the water up from the Antartic



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