Prince Regent NP, The Kimberley (June 2017) – Part II
Continued from Part I
The falls were spectacular and we were relieved to know the hardest 2 days of the trip where out of the way.
Ro had ensured happy hour was good on night 6 with a 2L cask of wine in the food drop. That had been her main concern when the bag had rolled off the boulder – did the wine stay intact? It had, the main complaint seemed to be “where was the second cask?”.
Unusually there had been a bit of cloud around on day 6 & 7. This provided a magnificent sunrise on day 7.
The morning of day 7 we had a few things missing. Apparently there’s a quoll out there that likes gingernuts, women’s knickers and steel wool.
Mike came up with an excellent plan of doing a one-night trip up the creek and then returning to the top of the falls the following day. This meant we could leave a lot of our food behind and avoid heavy packs for a couple of days. The food bags were re-hung (in a more accessible tree) and we headed upstream.
With a fairly short day ahead we had a leisurely morning tea with lots of jumping by Mike and Tom at a great waterhole.
Our camp on night 7 was our most intimate of the trip. It was at a wonderful waterhole, almost the definition of serenity (other than when Tom was jumping in!).
We explored a bit of the nearby country that afternoon.
On day 8 we headed back downstream following a slight different route.
We camped in a different spot above the falls on night 8 as the spot we’d chosen on night 6 had been a bit of a wind tunnel. The weather which had been quite cool up until night 6 started to warm up so we had a much more pleasant night second time round.
On day 9 we descended below the falls – via a side creek a couple of kilometres downstream. We got some great views of the falls on our way out.
We did a day trip upstream to below the falls in the afternoon. There was some good rock art along the way.
On day 10 most of us did a day trip downstream to see how far we could get before we would have to swim. The section below was the only time we got wet until the final canal.
The final canal where swimming was your only option stopped us. We had morning tea and a swim. Tom swam part way down the canal and then climbed up the wall and did a jump (if you look carefully you can see his silhouette in the photo below).
Our final day of walking we exited up the side-creek we’d come down on day 9 and then across into another side-creek which cam back to Garimbu Creek below the canal we’d walked down to on day 10. It wasn’t the most pleasant terrain and the temperature seemed to be up a few degrees on previous days. We were all losing the will to walk by the time we got to camp.
Our final day we just walked back upstream 100m or so and waited for the chopper to arrive. We were taken back to Mitchell Plateau airstrip, and then a flight back to Kununurra.
Back in Kununurra we had a lovely dinner at The Pumphouse, and later that night (with much help from google) we finally finished the crossword we’d been battling with all trip!