Port Victoria SA and down Yorke Peninsula 8 & 9 Dec 2017

8 December 2017 Port Victoria and beyond.
Another good nights sleep and another late start,  life is tough for some.
Our plan for the day, every day needs a plan! (according to Deb, I am more of a let’s  go out there and see what happens sort of guy 🙂 ) , was to make our way down to Innes National Park and do a bit of exploring. We did that and a whole lot more.

We hit the road around 10:00am first stop was Minlaton, one of the largest towns on Yorke Peninsula. Deb had heard that there was a very good french bakery and a chocolate shop in Minlaton.  There was a  bakery in a very old building with extremely high ceilings and an old world charm about it. We picked up some pastries for morning tea, a couple of buns for later and a cob of sourdough bread. We looked in the chocolate shop which also had french pastries, Deb didn’t seem impressed, we left  without any chocolate!  After a short walk around the central part of the town, there isn’t too much here to see. We called into the Tourist Information Centre and got a few brochures and Deb bought a basket for home. Deb noticed there was a market on today between 4 and 8pm next to the town hall, so we made a note of that and got back on the road.
Not far down the road we turned off at Hardwicke Bay and drove down to the coast. It is an old fishing village with lots of old, dated and very basic “shacks” on the coast. There are a few more modern holiday homes scattered amongst the shacks,  but the old shacks really do rule there. Down on the beach were 4 tractors lined up in a row, the trailers attached to them facing the gulf and  empty. It was an interesting site to see them just parked there waiting for their owners to return from fishing.
Next was the bustling hamlet of Warooka, a very small place. You know its going to be small when the tourist guide lists toilets 2nd on the towns amenities! Another drawcard was the “Sheep Wishing Trough”, all proceeds to the local emergency services groups.
Just south of Warooka was a restaurant called “Inland Sea”, Deb had read good things about it so we decided to have lunch there. The meals were OK, Deb had a seafood taster plate (oysters, prawns, scallops and squid) with a salad and I had  Garfish, chips and salad. Not the sort of meal you would travel 100″s of km for, but better than most pub food.
Back in the car and our next stop was Marion Bay, the gateway to the Innes National Park. It’s a small town with a good looking beach, jetty and coastline.

Next we ventured into the National Park. It was my first time here, so I was interested to see a few of the spots I had heard about. First went to Stenhouse Bay and did the Lookout Walk. It was a good short walk through the bush that gave you great views of the coast and some of the parks relics of its gypsum mining past. Next we went to the old Inneston Historic Township. A trail that takes you through the old Gypsum mining Township, with many old deserted buildings, some semi-restored buildings and the fully restored old Post Office. The old cricket field is in need of some tlc, the pitch is a bit rough and the field is punctuated with random trees.  Onwards we went, continuing our drive through the park to West Cape and a lookout with views along the wild southwest coast and the sheltered Pondalowie Bay to the north.  Photos of the coastal scenery and park just don’t do it justice.
It was starting to get a bit late so we began our trip back to Port Vic. Rather than retrace our way back we decided to go back via Corny Point, so it was a left turn just out of Marion Bay. It wasn’t too long before the bitumen road gave way to dirt road, luckily we didn’t pass anyone on our way through. The road varied in quality from freshly graded(very smooth) to finely corrugated (not fun to drive on). On the way we stopped off at Berry Bay to take in the  beach and coast. There were some Hooded Plovers (an endangered bird) fossicking for food on the beach. The coast here is beautiful, and a match for many of the areas acclaimed on Kangaroo Island. We made it to Corny Point, marked by a whitewashed Lighthouse. The coast of Yorke Peninsula was a treacherous area for the early merchant ships, and hence the coast is dotted with Lighthouses everywhere.
We left Corny Point and started to head home, it was about now that we  noticed the distance back and our fuel left didn’t quite match. Deb  started googling where the various petrol stations in the towns we were going through shut up for the day. It didn’t look good, and  Deb kept saying we could stay in a pub at this town or that if we couldn’t find fuel. A bit of conservative driving while trying to get to towns before the petrol station shut meant for  interesting driving, but we were gaining on the distance to the next town and the distance of fuel left. In the end it didn’t matter, we had forgotten about Hardwicke Bay. The open sign at the general store petrol station was a welcome site, and with a full tank we headed off to the market in Minlaton. We got there at about 6:15, just in time, we got the last 2 steak sandwiches at the Lions BBQ stall. We had a quick look around the market and got back in the car and headed back to the van at Port Vic.
After a short time I left Deb relaxing in the van, grabbed my fishing gear and headed to the jetty. It was around 7:20pm and there were about 10 people out on the jetty fishing. After an hour and half, I decided to give up for the day. I had hooked up a squid and got it to within a meter of landing it before it squirted me with ink and dropped back into the water. I will be back to get that beast!!
It’s now 10pm, the 36’ers aren’t doing well against Perth in the basketball, it’s time to call it a day.

9 December 2017  Port Victoria
Another slow start, we didn’t have anything planned for today except for a bit of fishing for me and a relaxing day reading for Deb.
I was out on the jetty at about 8:15, late by local standards, and there were at least 20 locals out already. 2 1/2 to 3 hrs later I returned to the van empty handed, there wasn’t very much being caught this morning, I saw a couple of Tommy Ruffs landed and 1 squid, not too good considering everyone that was out trying their luck.
I went back out at about 1, there was a small family group out at the end of the jetty so I took up a spot 3/4 of the way out. This time I went out armed with a few prawns for a second line. This proved fruitless, without even a bite, but it seems persistence does pay off, I came back in at about 3:15 with a couple of medium size squid in my bucket.
Marinated up with a bit of sweet chilli sauce and they were delicious with a fresh salad for tea.

We will post some pictures at some time, promise. 🙂

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