Saturday, 30 August 2014

Port Smith

After a quick resupply in Broome we headed down to Port Smith, this was one of the only places we missed on our way up to Broome from Port Hedland originally. It is 20km off the highway on good quality dirt road. There is just a caravan park & a private homestead at Port Smith, so the only option to camp was the caravan park. Rates were $40 for a powered site per night. The sites are on red dirt, but are large & pretty shady & the on site facilities are really good & the staff very friendly. 

Looking down at the lagoon

The main attraction at Port Smith is the lagoon. It is just down from the campground & it is a lagoon that fills & empties with the tide. The tides here are still really big, so you have to be careful when accessing it. We went down for look the next day. High tide was at lunch time, so we went down at about 8.30am. When we arrived you had to walk through the mangroves to get to the water, it was pretty empty but the tide was starting to rush in. By the time we found a fishing spot, the tide had already come in heaps, so we had to back track, so we didn't get stuck. We found a spot to fish near a little channel & as the water got deeper the fish started biting. Mat got a big yellow tail bream & the guy beside us got a long tom on a lure, soon the water was pushing in behind us & we had to retreat back through the mangroves, wading through water, to the car (luckily on high dry ground!), so we didn't get stuck. The power & quickness of the tide was unbelievable, it came up so fast. 

The lagoon above & below

As it was still early we decided to have a look at a place they call the cliffs. The directions they have were a bit sketchy, but we did manage to find them & what a sight. We have never seen anything like it. Beautiful white cliffs, with the bluest water, in all different shades than you have ever seen. It was really magical. Mat chucked in the fishing line, while I scanned the water for whales with my binoculars, sadly I didn't see any. Mat didn't catch a fish either, but we were so swept up in the scenery that it didn't matter & we had the whole place to ourselves. 

The cliffs above & below

We went back to camp for some lunch & a bit of a rest & then Mat decided he wanted to go for a fish again, as the tide was going out. I decided not to go & spent the afternoon reading magazines (one good thing about caravan parks, is most of them have a magazine & book exchange) it was lovely. Mat went fishing, but didn't catch any, but had a great time exploring the area, while the tide was out. 

The next day we went back to the lagoon again for another fish, but like the day before, just when the fish started biting, the tide comes in too far & you have to get out before you get stuck by the tide. So no fish for dinner that night. We spent the afternoon getting sorted to leave the next day & charging everything up, as we don't plan on having power for while now. So it will be a big day into Port Hedland, for a quick shop & then we will find somewhere south on the coast for a few days. 

The tide comes in so fast

Port Smith is definitely worth a look, but again you really need a boat to explore it properly (as Mat keeps mentioning over & over!). We stayed for 3 nights from the 27-30th of August. 

Red winged parrots hanging out at the campground

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