Bus to Exmouth

Exmouth Travel Blog

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Early bus this morning to Exmouth. I had been hoping to hitch a ride with other travelers going south to Perth from Exmouth or Darwin but I hadn't factored on it being the 'off' season, and that most travelers fly into Perth and then drive north, not fly into Broome/Darwin and drive south. Consequently I had to pay $270 for a 21 hr bus journey, a fact made more painful by the offer late last night of a lift to Port Headland (about 5 hrs closer) the following day. I had walked to the 4 hostels in Broome town and put up notices asking for a lift but with only offers of a lift via the inland (hot, dry, dusy and unevenful route) and was told that Exmouh would have more travelers passing through so reluctantly I left the beautiful, quiet hostel and pool in Broome in search of better things...

The bus journey was mostly uneventful, and when I say uneventful, I mean, hours and hours and hours of the same straight road with the same flat ground, and the same scrubby trees. It really is hard to comprehend the concept of a country so large that you can have unchanging landscape for so many hours on end. I hear the Nullaboor Plain is 8 hours of flat salt-wash. I'm told it has to be seen to be believed, but only once, or that way madness lies....

The only events of interest were the 10 minutes driving through clouds of giant bee/butterfly things that splattered themselves across the windscreen and the 'roo bars at the front of the coach smearing a bright yellow goo in splat patterns on the glass, their black lacy giant wings fluttering in the breeze. They remained there for hours; the driver wouldn't risk putting the wipers on and smearing the yellow stuff across the glass.

At dusk the kangaroos came out in force, and while I couldn't spot them in the failing light, Cecilia (someone I would meet properly the next day) counted 150 in the light of the headlights, not including the one the driver mowed down. In Australia, it's a well-known fact that you should't drive after dusk because 'roos make pretty big dents in cars and often kill people (roo-assisted suicide). If you have to, the rule is, you don't swerve, for anything, because in the dark you may end up ploughing straight into a road-side tree.

I slept a little, though not as much as I'd have liked on a 21 hr drive stopping to swap coaches as 1.30am. I had fitful dozes listening to the gentle thumps of some unknown insects crashing into the sides of the bus at a rate of several a second. Later inspection of the bus revealed no clues, so they clearly weren't the spattering kind...

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photo by: rollerblading