20-Dec-2003 -- This confluence point is located at a sparsely populated area in the Gascoyne region of Western Australia. (Named because it is the catchment of the Gascoyne River.) The nearest town is Meekatharra, which is 84km to the southwest.
The confluence is situated 89km southwest of Plutonic Gold Mine where Shane, Noel and I work. We left the mine office at around 4:10pm and travelled along the main mine access road for 12 km in a westerly direction until we reached the “Great Northern Highway” – the only bitumen road in the area. Once on the highway we were quite surprised at the number of trucks. There were more trucks then cars, and the majority of the trucks were “triples” – they have three trailers with a total of 62 wheels and are approximately 60m long.
We headed south for about 80km until we reached the turn-off. It took us quite some time to find the actual road we were supposed to be on as there were a number of tracks in the right direction – but these all came to an end after a short distance. We then had to rely on our fearless navigator Shane, to correctly identify the right track despite initially sending us on a “wild goose chase”.
The track ran beside an abandoned fence line to a number of bores (water wells). The first one we came to was David’s Well. This had obviously been abandoned some years ago. David’s Well was 12km northeast of the CP. There is a photo of the three of us in front of this abandoned well. From here the track continued in a southerly direction for about 10km until it headed southwest for 5km. From this point we continued on an unmarked track for a further 4km. Whilst travelling along this track we saw the first wildlife of the day – a group of three kangaroos lying in the shade of a tree. They bounded off as soon as they saw us coming. We then drove west towards the CP across country, but had to stop 2.4km from the CP when we came to a low ridge with moderately dense vegetation.
We walked from the car for about 25 minutes to get to the confluence point. We reached there at around 6:35pm. This gave us enough time to take some photos and have a quick look around before the sun set at 6:54pm.
The confluence point itself was undistinguished from the surrounding countryside. The ground surface was flat with only low scrub visible from the confluence point. On the journey from the road there was very little grass to be seen, and none at all near the CP – just barren ground and low trees with a large amount of broken shale on the surface. There was evidence of cattle (one piece of cow dung), but we saw no other wildlife. There was also evidence of rabbits (two burrows) and frequent small pits which had presumable been dug by kangaroos in search of food (roots and nodes on roots).
From here the trip back was relatively uneventful. We got back to the car shortly after sunset and back to the mine at around 9:00pm.