Steve and I had the pleasure of meeting John and Chris from Family West C&C Club and had a wonderful time hearing their stories of many happy years on the road. John wrote a newsletter of the visit and we have included a copy of it here. Safe and happy travels to all of the Family West C&C Club and in particular John and Chris.
4th – 6th August 2015
Nambung Station is a working sheep and cattle property located East of Cervantes. In recent times the station has been advertised as a station stay with facilities suitable for caravans, campers and mobile homes. At our last rally Chris and I volunteered to check out Nambung and report back as to its suitability as a rally venue for our club.
Access to Nambung Station can either be via Brand Highway or via Cervantes. We chose to take the western route via Kwinana/Mitchell Freeway, Wanneroo Road, Indian Ocean Drive, Cervantes Road and Munbinea Road. Upon our arrival at Nambung Station the odometer on the Nissan read 300 km however we did make a detour at Lancelin for lunch. Our return journey was via Wongonderrah Road, Brand Highway, Roe Highway and Kwinana Freeway, a distance of about 250 km but once again we detoured into Gingin for morning tea. Brand Highway is the shorter route but there are numerous traffic lights and heavy transports to contend with however either route would be about a 3 hour drive from Rockingham keeping in mind about 14km of Munbinea road and about 22km of Wongonderrah road is unsealed. Both these roads appear to be reasonably well maintained although wet weather might be an issue.
Nambung Station is reasonably well sign posted and upon our arrival there was adequate signage giving advice and directions to visitors. There is a large grassed area with adequate parking for multiple numbers of caravans as well as a dedicated area for campers. Shade is very limited and this would be a problem during summer months although trees have been planted throughout the site. Electric power is not available and water is limited. It was noted mobile phone reception was available. There is a spartan camp kitchen constructed from corrugated iron and a small outdoor seating area surrounded by shade cloth. Adjacent is a fire pit surrounded by a corrugated iron wind break. The ablutions block consists of two demountable type units with combined shower and toilet. Hot water is a gas/instantaneous service. Electric lighting is limited. A small playground is provided for younger children. Pets are welcome. The reception and office is located in the main house about a distance of 100 metres from the caravan park area. Tariff is reasonable at $10 per person per night.
Nambung National Park of Pinnacles fame has a common border with Nambung Station. The Painted Desert is also a unique area of the National Park and this can be accessed at the end of the property. The Station conducts guided tours of the property and the Painted Desert and this, thanks to our guide Alison Kruger, was the highlight of our visit. Alison gave us a personalised tour of the property and was able to provide informative and historic details of the property, the Nambung National Park and the Painted Desert in particular. Alison and husband Steve are also consummate photographers and it is worthwhile checking the pictures on their web site – :http//www4wdaus.com.
The tour included a short walk into the Painted Desert with its fascinating rock formations similar to those found at the Pinnacles. Walking through the sand and the dunes of the Painted Desert may be difficult for some however it is well worth the effort and the reward is spectacular views of the dunes and pinnacle formations. Cost of the tour is a very reasonable $10 per person. Transport via a John Deere Alligator 4WD vehicle is also a unique experience.
Nambung Station is not likely to be a suitable destination for a Rally for the Family West Caravan and Camping Club unless it is designated OBT (Off the Beaten Track). The distance to travel may also be difficult for those still working and would be best reserved for a long weekend. Our retired members would probably add an extra day or two to such a rally. Caravans would need to be self contained as water is limited and electric power is unavailable. Generators are acceptable. The ablutions would be insufficient to cater for a large group. The best time to visit would be September/October when the weather and the wild flowers should be at their best. Summer visits would not be advisable due to lack of shade. Winter could also be quite cold as the area is exposed to wind. Some caravanners may also be averse to travelling on gravel roads although the roads appear to be regularly maintained. It would not be advisable to travel on these roads during wet weather.
Regardless of the above, Chris and I enjoyed our short stay at Nambung Station and particularly enjoyed the station tour and the visit to the Painted Desert. The station is better suited as a venue for individual travellers than as a venue for caravan club rallies. It is perfectly suitable for those seeking a slightly remote and quiet location and can be recommended for that purpose.