Well I have just returned from a few weeks in the gloriously sunny French Riviera and the equally warm and sunny Madrid, but before I get to those posts I need to touch on my weekend away with the girls to the sunny but bloody freezing cold southwest corner of Western Australia!
Our annual girls weekend away with our little hiking loving group resulted in us staying at Donnelly River, about a 3 hour drive south of Perth. This small village was a former timber mill town, but today the old workers huts have been transformed into little chalets that can be booked for holidays. Donnelly River really is in the middle of nowhere, with barely any phone reception and no TV’s in the cottages it made for a peaceful and relaxing weekend away. The little settlement is also the midway point of the 1000km long Bibbulmun Track. For those hiking end to end this means that when you hit Donnelly River you are at the halfway point. It must be a welcome relief to see the small site, to be able to buy some “real” food and coffee at the one and only general store, and you can hire a chalet and have a real hot shower for the first time in days! For us, the chalet was a perfect base to do day walks from. We headed off on a 15km walk, admiring this section of the Bibbulman track for its outstanding forest and natural scenery. Compared to the northern part of the track near Perth, that we usually frequent, this more southern part had some HUGE trees and a lot more vegetation of a natural state. Even though it was a cold cold day (it hit 1 degree celcius that morning), it was perfect walking weather and very pleasant.
After a long days walk nothing beat going back to the chalet, lighting the fire and having a hot cup of tea on the porch, watching the local wildlife wander around from hut to hut looking for food. That’s right – the animals of the town are so tame that you will have kangaroos and emus wondering up to you and checking you out without a care in the world. It really is a unique and beautiful place, and one I would like to go back to with my own family in the future whenever we need a “time out” from the rat race that is city life!